NIMBioS Hosts Field Trip for Rural Middle School Students


Greenback School sixth graders release their “organisms” back into the “habitat” during the capture-recapture simulation.

Nearly 50 sixth graders and their teachers from Greenback School visited NIMBioS last week for an exciting day of STEM and getting a taste of the college experience. The rural school located about 30 miles southeast of NIMBioS.

Beginning with a mock “university class,” students did a fun hands-on activity created by NIMBioS postdoc Elizabeth Hobson. Students simulated the capture-recapture method of sampling organisms in the wild by using tupperware bins, beans and pine bedding. The activity showed the usefulness of math for doing ecological research.

Next, students headed across the street to Hodges Library for a tour and an introduction to the University of Tennessee’s six-story university library and all of its resources. The students returned to NIMBioS for a pizza lunch, since pizza is an important part of the college experience. Lastly, students walked across campus, past the new Student Union, Neyland Stadium, and UT’s Hill to the Min Kao Computer Science and Engineering building, where students toured energy and robotics engineering labs associated with CURENT, the Center for Ultra-Wide-Area Resilient Electric Energy Transmission Networks, an NSF Engineering Research Center at UT.

More photos from this fun day are posted on our Flickr photo album.

Hobson (left) with Greenback School Students

Hobson (left) with Greenback School students


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