How aquaponic system models are helping teachers get great results in STEM subjects

“The best teachers are those who keep students motivated, challenged and flourishing.”

John Kline

Primary school children touring off grid aquaponic system

Skills for the future

The way of farming is changing. The job market is shifting and the traditional skill-sets. Skills that have held value for decades may not necessarily be as valuable ten and twenty years from now. As demand for Barbados to remain competitive in this world we need to improve our industry and tourism product we can do this by drawing upon the STEM subjects being tough in schools and this can be do through using aquaponics as an aid for the teachers. We need these subjects to improve the whole work force.

CVQ class in barbados cleaning fish tank

CVQ class in barbados cleaning NFT growbed

Multi subject teaching aid

The ability to teach different subjects through various aspects of the system and in varying degrees of depth means that aquaponics can provide stability in learning throughout the year. Aquaponics can offer unique learning and teaching opportunities and because it pancakes them in a whole system we can see how these things work together. With aquaponics the saying the sum of the parts is greater than the whole rings through. The principals that can be taught during the setting up of aquaponic systems is one phase then you have the start up phase and then you have the running phase.

CVQ barbados aquaponics class graduation

secondary school touring off grid aquaponic system

Topics you can teach

Building
1. Water flow dynamics
a. Siphons
b. Bernoulli principle
c. Water Pressure
d. Irrigation manifolds
2. Material usage
a. Food safe
b. Environmental effects
c.
3. Lights
4. Air quality
Start up
1. Nutrient cycle
2. Water cycle
a. Evaporation
b. Transpiration
c. Condensation
d. precipitation
3. Water chemistry
4. Water
Maintenance
1. Fish breeding

We have found some hurdles towards using aquaponics in the class room setting and also found the solutions to implementing aquaponics as a teaching aid. Following this guide will ensure you can use aquaponics in the classroom setting at any level in the school.

Barbados community college touring off grid aquaponic system

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Equal parts technology enthusiast, carpenter, kitchen designer, farmer, capitalist, domesticated father and tree-hugger, I dissected and negotiated myself into a life that brings me both pleasure and pain upon coming to the realization that I cannot save mother earth from Human nature and my only recourse is to do more good than harm through Aquaponics. All of my work can be found here in these 12 main and the supporting pages I use to valiantly put forth this hypothesis.

Damian HInkson