Mini-Grant Application for School Year 2019-2020

Submitted by: Amber Platowski Email: Grade Level: 10-12 Subject: marine science, AICE marine sc
Co-Applicant: Email: Grade level: Subject:

School: Booker High School Type: Public Grade Levels:9-12 County:Sarasota

Approx. Enrollment: 1250 Number of teachers:80

School Address:

3201 N. Orange Ave
Sarasota, FL 34234

Phone: 9419279000 Principal:Dr. Rachel Shelley Email:

Twitter: @BHS_Sarasota #Booker_BRUVs

Project Title: connecting our community with our oceans: an opportunity to expand our understanding of marine scien
Project Dates: Feb 1, 202-5/1/2020 Grade Levels:

Focus Area(s) :science communication- field science- ecosystem management - website design

Students will build and deploy Baited Remote Underwater Video survey (BRUVs) structures in Sarasota Bay to measure predator and prey abundance as they study the bay as a habitat for sharks. BRUVs are weight PVC structures with action cameras and bait boxes mounted on them and are typically used in shark research. Biscayne Bay in Miami will be used as a model and students will have the opportunity to collaborate with scientists from Field School as they engineer their BRUVs. They will analyze their video footage and create a website with protocols for other student groups to participate as citizen scientists.


How is your project innovative?   (25 points)
This project is innovative because we are putting the survey techniques of marine scientists in the hands of high school students. Through citizen science, we will provide opportunities for our students to be competitive in the 21st century job market and university research roles. This project combines the technology of camera traps with the survey techniques of shark scientists and allows non-invasive habitat monitoring of our local marine ecosystem. Students will be doing everything from the engineering of the BRUVs to the data collection to the website design and science communication from their studies. A BRUV itself isn't incredibly high tech, but the way that the technology is used as a camera trap, similar to trail cameras has vast potential impacts for bay and inland water studies. The technology is simple enough for the students to take ownership over, but will provide ample opportunities for them to create their own research questions and familiarize themselves with a tool that is used in field research at the undergraduate, graduate and PhD level.

How will it fit into your curriculum (include standards)? (10 points)
ISTE 1D: empowered learner: Students understand the fundamental concepts of technology operations, demonstrate the ability to choose, use and troubleshoot current technologies and are able to transfer their knowledge to explore emerging technologies. Students will work with the BRUV and action camera and footage as first-person field-scientists and troubleshoot as necessary. ISTE 3D: knowledge constructor: Students build knowledge by actively exploring real-world issues and problems, developing ideas and theories and pursuing answers and solutions. Fisheries management for sharks is a growing field, as populations decrease and management strategies are under scrutiny. Non-invasive study techniques like the BRUVs will allow students to gain firsthand knowledge of the research techniques as well as the advantages and disadvantages of using such skills. ISTE 4A: innovative designer: Students know and use a deliberate design process for generating ideas, testing theories, creating innovative artifacts or solving authentic problems. Students will be working with raw data from our local Sarasota Bay ecosystem. They will develop their own questions and problem-solve as needed. ISTE 6A: creative communicator: Students choose the appropriate platforms and tools for meeting the desired objectives of their creation or communication. As they develop a larger data set, students will be able to create communication methods such as infographics, informational videos and a website for our community members, local scientists, and other students around the world to utilize. ISTE 6D: creative communicator: Students publish or present content that customizes the message and medium for their intended audiences. The communication tools students will use will vary depending on their audience (website for other schools to follow our protocols, infographics for the local press, etc). This will allow students to step into the role of science communication specialists, a growing field within conservation biology. NGSSS: SC.912.N.1.1: Define a problem based on a specific body of knowledge, for example, biology, chemistry, physics, and earth/space science, and do the following: 1. Pose questions about the natural world, Conduct systematic observations, Examine books and other sources of information to see what is already known, 2. Review what is known in light of empirical evidence, Plan investigations, 3. Use tools to gather, analyze, and interpret data (this includes the use of measurement in metric and other systems, and also the generation and interpretation of graphical representations of data, including data tables and graphs), 4. Pose answers, explanations, or descriptions of events, 5. Generate explanations that explicate or describe natural phenomena (inferences), 6. Use appropriate evidence and reasoning to justify these explanations to others, 7. Communicate results of scientific investigations, and 8. Evaluate the merits of the explanations produced by others. Students will be creating and testing their own protocols thorough background research on where BRUVs should be deployed, and data collection methodology for reviewing video footage. They will share these methods with others to build a network of students acting as citizen scientists. SC.912.N.4.1 Explain how scientific knowledge and reasoning provide an empirically-based perspective to inform society's decision making. Fisheries management is a popular field within conservation biology and up-to-date technology and protocols, as well as accurate data, need to be utilized in order to set catch limits, determine fishing seasons, and review current and future best practices. UN sustainable development Goal 14: Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development Increase scientific knowledge, develop research capacity and transfer marine technology, taking into account the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission Criteria and Guidelines on the Transfer of Marine Technology, in order to improve ocean health and to enhance the contribution of marine biodiversity to the development of developing countries, in particular, small island developing States and least developed countries Students will be working in a hands-on capacity to delve into this important United Nations goal for 2030. By utilizing inexpensive marine technology and creating protocols so other groups can follow their procedures, students will be creating opportunities for citizen scientists to contribute to their study of sharks in warm, shallow bays around the world and hopefully help inform fisheries management practices. Cambridge University AICE marine science A-level: Fisheries management Students who are working towards their AICE diploma can work with authentic data sets and marine technology to gain a better understanding of the complexity of fisheries management.

How will it encourage long-lasting change in your classroom, school or community? (20 points)
By building their BRUVs from scratch, students will navigate through unforeseen obstacles and be able to communicate those to other groups who want to follow our schematics for BRUV building and deployment. Our students, many of whom are from economically disadvantaged families will learn a technique used by working field scientists, giving them a competitive advantage for university and job markets. They will communicate their results to our community, including those at Mote Marine Lab and Aquarium as well as develop a website and infographics for science communication purposes.

How will technology be utilized?  (20 points)
By building a BRUV from scratch, students will work with hand tools in order to cut their PVC and mount an action camera to the BRUV. They will review the HD video footage from a Surface Pro and gain competency in forming a strict protocol for doing so. Students will be introduced to software to create infographics as a visual science communication tool as well as basic website development skills to share their protocols with the world.

What evidence will you collect to show student gain?   (10 points)
Students will be given a pre-project survey, developed in conjunction with Field School to determine their interests in field science, marine science, and engineering. They will complete reflections throughout the process which will be reviewed, looking for keywords indicating a change in perspective or the addition of new vocabulary. Students will create a website and infographics as a culminating project in order to share their work with a broader audience and will be graded with rubrics for both. Finally, they will be given a post-project survey, which will be compared to the pre-project survey to determine learning gains.

How will participants share your project results with the community?  (15 points)
Communication of results is a vital piece of scientific research. Students will be sharing their work with the wider school, local and international communities in a variety of ways. They will create infographics to share the results of their field study comparing the abundance of predators and prey in Sarasota Bay. They will share these on the Shark Stewards website (a nonprofit organization with a local chapter) as well as with Field School, a partnering organization as well as with the School Advisory Council. Students will also create a website for their BRUV engineering and deployment methodologies which will be shared with the Florida Marine Science Teacher’s Association as well as other marine science clubs in the area.


Service/ Item Description Cost
construction of baited underwater remote video survey structures (2) 449.80
3 GARMIN GPS action cameras 1100.31
Microsoft Surface Pro 699.00
Boat Rental (3- 1/2 days) 498.00
Total Cost of Project 2747.11
Total Requested from TERRA 2747.11
If matching funds identified list source:
Donated Goods/Services:

I, Amber Platowski, certify that the application is complete and final, AND I verify that I have received permission to apply for these funds from Dr. Rachel Shelley,the Principal of Booker High School and any other individuals required by my school district.