Last week, the NOAA Marine Debris Program co-hosted the Great Lakes Marine Debris Educators Workshop with Ohio Sea Grant.
Educators from across the Great Lakes, and from all grade levels, experienced marine debris research first hand. Participants trawled Lake Erie for plastics, conducted a marine debris cleanup, dissected fish, and participated in marine debris specific lessons and activities. Educators were given the opportunity to analyze the trawl samples, fish gill and stomach contents, as well as personal care products that contained microbeads under microscopes to see and experience the debris that impacts our local Great Lakes habitats and species.
By pairing science-based education with other lessons and activities focused on local action and prevention of marine debris, participants can share the information they learned with their peers and engage students in the global importance of marine debris.
The workshop was held at The Ohio State University’s Stone Laboratory in Lake Erie. Established in 1895, Stone Laboratory is the oldest freshwater biological field station in the United States and the center of Ohio State University’s teaching and research on Lake Erie. The lab serves as a base for more than 65 researchers from 12 agencies and academic institutions, all working year-round to solve the most pressing problems facing the Great Lakes, including marine debris.