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180Bob

Tanks for Teachers??

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I have a 45 gallon tank with stand and canopy' date=' overflow box, and sand I would like to donate for this also.[/quote']

 

Bob that's great. So could you list what would be needed to make the tank complete? maybe other reefers might be able to give those items?

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It would depend on what they wanted to put in it. I would need lights, a sump, heater, rock. The canopy is custom made and will support MH lighting if need be. I have a return pump I can throw in also.

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Any new updates?

 

Nothing more than what has been posted. I need to check once more with Reefgeek if his offer on his cube is still standing. It's on my list "to do". If this does not pan out we can keep soliciting for all the parts needed to complete Bob's tank.

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Nothing more than what has been posted. I need to check once more with Reefgeek if his offer on his cube is still standing. It's on my list "to do". If this does not pan out we can keep soliciting for all the parts needed to complete Bob's tank.

 

Thought Reefgeek just sold his cube tank.

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Thought Reefgeek just sold his cube tank.

 

Yes you are correct he did. We are talking about a 24 nano (plug and play) that he also has/had (the all in one type of tank) ;)

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What we need

 

Ok so reefgeek got rid of his small nano. So we are starting fresh with Lowman's 45 G tank. What are the dimension Bob?

So we are looking for donations as follow:

 

Lights (Maybe fluo to start with, upgrade to MH eventually later if needed)

Sump (if it has a refugium compartment even better)

Heater

Rock

thermometer

Fish food

Live stock (Easy starting fish)

Skimmer or filtration system

Salt

DI Water system

Electrical power strip

Timers for lights

Probably some plumbing (valves, tubing, or PVC)

Anything else?

 

feel free to step up with what you have that may help

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I've been going through our boxes of miscellaneous parts and pieces. We have an old sump that has been repaired a few times, heaters, sand, 10 gallon glass tanks, possibly some small skimmers (not sure if they are complete,) ho ballasts, coral skeletons ( I was using for reef rubble.) Let me know if any of these items would be good for the teacher program.

-Nick

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Nick, thanks those would be great . Preferably things that work and are reliable are what we need. heaters, lights pumps and skimmers are needed. Are the HO ballasts wired as well? The 10 gal sumps tanks could also be used , are they drilled? Sand and rubble will be good too.

 

Thanks

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If we could get some sand/cement/salt from someone, we could make some DIY rock that could soak in water while we are trying to get everything else put together. This would cut down on the cost.

 

Is there any more information from IPSF? Someone was going to look into getting invers from them. I don't remember who.

 

dsoz

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Who in the area can pick up the tank from Bob? Please PM him to set up a time.

 

Jay

 

 

Where does it need to go? I think I am close to Bob and have a truck so not a problem if it is close to the Metro area for delivery. Just let me know if this can be worked out.

 

Scott

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What experience tells me...(warning, long!)

 

Hi everyone--

 

My name is Ryan Lenz and I'm new to the club, but old to the hobby and excited to hear other people using aquariums in schools. I'm completing my year of student teaching here in Corvallis (teaching 8th grade) and I've got a little 20 gallon tank with a few chunks of donated live rock and (as of yesterday) a piece of green start polyps (thanks, Scott!). I've spent the last year installing 6 coldwater tanks (10-60 gal) down in the Coos Bay/Bandon public schools (elementary and middle only) and am convinced that ANYTHING can be taught using an aquarium. I mean it! A bit of a summary of what my experience tells me about putting tanks in schools:

 

From math to literature to the sciences, aquaria are engaging to young people and can be used as unique educational tools. This message needs to be at the forefront of our efforts--otherwise these tanks will only receive attention as "decoration". I have lesson plans drawn up that address many subjects at the K-6 level, but they can be easily extended into higher grades as well. It's not hard for all of us to imagine how tanks can be used in schools--but it's not as obvious to non-reefers. If a school is being asked to spend precious time/money on a tank, a one-page "here is what we/you can/will teach using the aquarium" will go a long way. I am hoping to eventually put together a manual/book for teachers with these lesson plans, but feel free to email me personally for any of the material (ryanjohnlenz@gmail.com).

 

  1. Teacher support is critical, but teacher time is severely limited and inconsistently available. We've got to get systems that can handle neglect! Nobody (but us) enjoys cleaning protein skimmers and scraping corraline, and teachers/custodians have very little extra time to commit to tank upkeep. Even "simple" daily tasks like feeding and dosing chemicals is a lot to ask of someone who is in charge of hundreds of kids. We don't want to set up tanks that end up failing because there isn't enough time to give them the maintenance we need.
     
  2. I mentioned this in this months meeting, but its worth repeating: There is no reason whatsoever to keep fragile, rare or expensive critters in school tanks! Students/teachers/the general public don't have a clue that your Voodoo Micromussa is any more valuable/rare/impressive than an Aiptasia under actinics. Remember, this is guaranteed to be the first saltwater tank (let alone reef) that most students have seen and had a chance to be involved with. I know it makes some of us cringe, but a tank full of Caulerpa, Aiptasia, Valonia, flatworms and damsels is gorgeous and educational in its own right. Of course, teachers that become hooked on the hobby will want to move into non-weedy tanks, but if that happens our job as instigators is done :)
     
  3. Get students involved! If you can train an "aquarium crew", you will rarely have to touch the tank. Obviously this depends on grade level, but students can (and should!) clean the glass, mix saltwater, change water, clean skimmers, test water (and graph results), clean pumps, add chemicals--virtually everything. You/teacher supply the materials and supervision, the kids do the dirty work. This is so important! A major objective of using aquariums in schools is to teach students responsibility. It might be possible to send the tank home with students over long breaks/summers, if it was small enough. The point is that kids *want* to help, so let them!
     
  4. You are probably aware of this, but the general public still thinks that saltwater aquariums are "really hard to keep". And while they might be somewhat right, they're thinking of 90's style fish-only canister/undergravel/UV/bio-wheel tanks with sick fish and algae nightmares. Its important that teachers understand that "Natural" reef aquariums (i.e. substantial amounts of live rock, circulation, and skimming) are self-regulating to a much higher degree than the tanks of the past.
     
  5. Fish steal the show. While most students will constantly ask "Where are the fish?", I find that a invert/plant-only tank gets people to really notice the details. When Nemo is bathing in his anemone, its hard to notice the gorgeous crustose corraline formation next to him. Not to mention, fish up the ante for maintenance and cost. I'm not saying we can't/shouldn't put fish in the tanks, but I would consider the benefits of inconspicuous fish (neon gobies, lemon gobies, algae blennies, etc.).
     
  6. RO/DI water is not realistic in most cases. This is just a fact of life in schools. Without serious funding and a personally involved teacher, you are probably going to end up using tap water, or if you're lucky, a cheap DI unit. I have yet to meet a teacher (other than myself and Lee Jones--"AquaEd") willing to haul buckets of water into the classroom. My solution is macro-algaes, but its also in the attitude you take on algae. Once again, we need to take off our reef-geek blinders and realize that unless your algae problem is totally extreme, its not necessarily a bad thing! Algae is a critical part of natural systems and (in my unsubstantiated opinion) helps keep neglected tanks from becoming cesspools. And more importantly--without purified water (and even with it, many times..) you're going to have algae, so look at it as a free source of oxygen ;) Can't beat em...join em, right?

Direction for the future:

 

  1. Find funding! This is probably the number one obstacle to getting low-maintenance tanks into schools. I have applied and received grants from Soil and Water Conservation Districts, and there is surely more money out there waiting to be asked for. Perhaps someone else with more experience writing grants can chime in with some other possible sources. How about the Oregon Coast Aquarium/Hatfield Marine Science Center? Local stores are usually hit-or-miss, but it can't hurt to ask. I think its a reasonable trade off to offer to put a small sign on/near the tank: "thank you to ______ for their contributions to this aquarium". Are there any national organizations that would be worth approaching? How about the online vendors?
     
  2. Come up with specific tank-inhabitant combinations. Think of all the "die-hard" and cheap inhabitants and put them all together. Honestly I want to purposely create a "weed-tank" and watch everyone fall in love with it. But obviously it would be nice to branch out into shrooms, polyps, softies, etc.
     
  3. How about an aquarium-equipment drive? There is so much old gear sitting in garages--I bet some fliers and an ad on craigslist would bring out tons of tanks. Perhaps even sending letters home to parents?
     
  4. Maybe high school shop class could build tanks/stands/equipment? It might give shop teachers something new to do--I bet most of them have never built with acrylic!
     
  5. Could PNWMAS put together a "go-to" list of people who are willing to educate teachers, set up tanks, and perhaps do/supervise maintenance?

Ok--I'm done. If you made it this far, congrats, go stare at your tank (nutty). I'm obviously into this idea and I'm glad to put more energy into this.

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I've been toying with this for months, ever since my wife brought up the fact of what to do with a tank during vacation time in her classroom. (not to mention weekly/monthly maintenance) This was touched a little bit Sunday, but what if we had dedicated members to "adopt" a particular nearby school/ school tank of their choice. That person can help with a school they may live close to, and best of all, commit to helping move the tank back to their home and school during the summer break. Like if I ended up with putting one in June's classroom, I would be glad to take over that part for her. It does scare me to think of having to move a large tank back and forth all the time, but not many options unless someone was to come into the school to feed the fish every few days during janitor hours... That might be something to look into, or maybe getting a key to let an authorized person in to feed the fish during the summer. For instance, if we left a tank in my wife's classroom, it's too far away from SE 92nd and Stark to drive every few days from Damascus. I wouldn't do it. But if say, someone lived close by and volunteered to feed, do light maintenance, check on fish etc., that may work and never have to lug a 55 gallon tank home. That person can also be the "go to" guy if the teacher has questions or needs help.

PNWMAS adopt a fish program? Good idea? Bad? Any thoughts or other ideas, because I think vacations is our biggest obstacle.

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If we do like doughpat suggested, and only have low care items in the tank, then we don't need to worry a lot about die-off. Mushrooms, zoas, maybe a monti cap... Those all seem to be bulletproof. To get adventuresome throw in a head of frogspawn. From what I see, those types of corals can survive under low lights, even PC.

 

As for fish, if we make sure that the fish that end up in the classroom are properly QT, there should be no ick issues. I want to believe that Dave's clowns are "clean" and don't have problems with ick. If those are the first fish in the tank then all the others can be kept in QT for a couple of weeks then given to the school.

 

Ron- I have moved tanks around from school to home and back many times. Not over Christmas vacation, but over summer break. The other teacher in my school that has fish also takes the tanks home over summer. If the tanks are small enough (20-30g), everything can get put in buckets, brought home, and re-setup in a matter of hours. Not a big problem. If the tank gets too big, then there would need to be two tanks, one at home and one at school to help reduce the insanity of moving at the start and end of summer. If the teacher is a fish-head, this should be no problem.

 

dsoz

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I really think inverts only is the way to go. Shrooms, yellow polyps and a few various lps heads. I know there are folks out there who could donate some GSP frags to schools during their monthly pruning. Cool shrimp and such.

No fish or one fish = fewer ammonia spike problems in small tanks.

 

We should help with fish if they can pull off a 30 or 40 gallon system. Lots of schools have old fish tanks lying around but very few know how to make diy rock or what corals are hardy.

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I think that one of the big obstacles will be getting the teachers to realize that SW is not much more difficult than a properly set up FW tank. I know a lot of biology teachers that have FW tanks, but when I ask them if they would like a SW setup they turn white with fear. The impression is that it will take a lot more work and a lot more time.

 

I just talked with another bio teacher at my school and started convincing her that she should start thinking of having a SW setup in her classroom. I think she may be starting to think about it. I also gave her this website and she said that she would come visit us.

 

dsoz

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