graders visit UI
The 7th grade class recently went on a campus tour at the University of Idaho in Moscow. This field trip was paid for with GEAR UP 2 funds. GEAR UP 2 is a seven year federal grant that School District 242 was awarded this year. Its beneficiaries are this year’s 7th graders and next year will also include this year’s 6th graders. It’s designed to help prepare the kids to successfully graduate from high school and be well-prepared to go on to college or some other post-secondary education. School District 242 is wrapping up the GEAR UP 1 grant which has followed this year’s 10, 11 and 12th graders for the past six years.
Our campus tour at U of I began with an activity at the Human Anatomy and Physiology Lab on campus. The 7th graders have been learning about human body systems with their science teacher, Tandy Savage. The anatomy instructor, Candi Heimgartner, had prepared two activities. The students created working lung models with balloons, straws and cups. They also learned about forensics. They looked at human tibia bones and determined if they were male or female and calculated the height of the person using simple mathematical equations. Instructor Heimgartner was impressed with the students’ level of knowledge about bones, their attentiveness and their critical thinking skills.
Following the Anatomy Lab activities, we ate our sack lunches in the Commons area. After lunch, half the students went on a walking tour of the campus with undergraduate students from U of I. The other half went to the Museum of Entomology at the College of Agriculture. The museum has a huge collection of insects and is open to the public, by appointment. The students listened to Frank, “the keeper of the bugs,” talk about the importance of insects in our ecosystem. They got to see a variety of the insect displays and a collection of live “walking stick” bugs that Frank has raised and the tarantulas he has adopted. Frank talked about the remarkable ability the walking sticks have to camouflage themselves.
After all the students had seen the campus and the Museum of Entomology, it was time to head for home. It was a great day at the University of Idaho. The students were exceptionally well-behaved, and hopefully enjoyed their time on campus.
Nicole Poxleitner holds a "walking stick" bug at the Museum of Entomology at U of I.
Kennedy Rieger holding "Lucy," the tarantula at the Museum of Entomology at The University of Idaho.