By MADISSON HEINL
Communications Specialist, Center For Lakes & Streams
The Center for Lakes & Streams Lake in the Classroom program distributed 23 aquariums throughout Kosciusko County classrooms and local businesses this year.
The aquariums are located in classrooms, libraries and community centers for educational purposes. Each aquarium houses a variety of fish species found in local waterways, including bluegill, bass and catfish, and crayfish.
Caitlin Yoder, education coordinator for the Center for Lakes & Streams, said, “It is so exciting to see how the students love to interact and care for the fish. I hear story after story about how therapeutic the fish are and how they inspire the children to learn. We hope to continue to expand our program to reach even more students this following year.”
While the Lake in the Classroom program started as a K-12 education effort, the aquariums can also be found in local community centers and offices including North Webster Community Center, Syracuse Community Center, and Syracuse Family Practice. These aquariums provide the opportunity for community education concerning Kosciusko County’s lakes that stretches beyond the classroom.
Each aquarium is sponsored by a local business. During the 2014-2015 school year, the Lake in the Classroom program was expanded countywide when an aquarium sponsored by the Hand Family Foundation was added to Mentone Elementary School. The Lake in the Classroom program is now accepting sponsors for the 2015-2016 school year.
Other sponsors this year included The Allen Family, Biomet, Cargill, CenturyLink, City of Warsaw, CTB, Inc., Culver Family Foundation, Da-Lite, Kay Young — Todd Realty, Kosciusko Community Hospital, Lake City Bank, Lake Tippecanoe Property Owners, Louis Dreyfus Commodities, Medtronic, MutualBank, Paragon Medical, Silveus Insurance Group, Syracuse Lake Association, The Papers, Tippecanoe Watershed Foundation, Warsaw Breakfast Optimist Club, Wawasee Area Conservancy Foundation, Wawasee Property Owners Association, Webster Lake Conservation Association, and the Winona Lake Preservation Association.
If your organization or business is interested in sponsoring Lake in the Classroom, visit lakes.grace.edu.
The Center for Lakes & Streams at Grace College conducts applicable research, engages and educates residents, and collaborates with other organizations in efforts to make the lakes and streams of Kosciusko County cleaner. For more information or to support their efforts, visit lakes.grace.edu.