A week ago, on Saturday, November 5, 64 TIC teachers and volunteers gathered at Mount Abraham Union Middle-High School for the third annual TIC workshop. Based on comments offered and evaluations completed by participants, it was a valuable day of learning and sharing. (Click here to read evaluation comments.)
Information was presented by Joe Mark, Jeremy Whalen, Bob Wible, and Doug Zehner, but many of the most important contributions were made by experienced TIC teachers in attendance.
Bob Wible provided a helpful review of the AquaClear 110 filter and how to assemble it. He also explained how to modify the standard breeder basket so that it traps less debris.
Group activities included water testing and using an Excel spreadsheet to estimate or even control when fry hit the critical swim-up stage.
(Teachers and volunteers will be interested to know that, after the workshop, Poultney volunteer Lorena Schwarz proposed a simpler version of that spreadsheet--Yeah!--and then I took Lorena's version to Castleton University statistics professor Abbess Rajia, who simplified it further. Shortly, I'll be writing a special post about the new "Development Index Calculator" and giving all TIC fans access to it.)
(Here's a page of six Release Day videos.) Two of the morning activities ran longer than expected, and this cut into time planned for visiting MAUMHS host Sam Kayhart's TIC tank, although Sam offered to take teachers to her classroom after the workshop.
The second panel addressed ways to enhance TIC programs as well as a variety of approaches to Release Days. Other highlights included describing some of the "across the curriculum" ideas that various TIC teachers have developed in the past.
Joe Mark, Lead Facilitator, Vermont Trout in the Classroom
In June 2012, I retired after 40 years in higher education, having spent the last 32 years of my career as dean at Castleton. One of the first things I volunteered to do in retirement was to work with Jim Mirenda to help the Dorset School, where his kids and my Vermont grandkids attend, start a TIC program. Gradually that commitment grew into my current role, which is both demanding and highly rewarding.