Aquaponics is a proven system for raising fish and growing plants that also provides an excellent way to teach children a variety of lessons. Whether you want to focus on learning key topics like science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) or you want to focus on responsibility, self-sufficiency, or nutrition, aquaponics for kids is the perfect solution. These benefits combined with the organic plants and fresh fish produced by the system make teaching kids about aquaponics a very rewarding experience. Learn how aquaponics can make an impact for children in the classroom, in your backyard, or even right in your living room.
Aquaponics In The Classroom
Aquaponics is a great way to bring engaging, interactive learning into your classroom, and it is suitable for any age. Teaching kids about aquaponics provides a wealth of opportunities to bring STEM subjects to life. From science lessons about plant growth, the lifecycle of fish, or how the nitrogen cycle works to make an aquaponic system thrive to engineering and math lessons, an aquaponics school project can take a major part in lessons throughout the school year. Not only does an aquaponics system provide fodder for lessons, but this type of interactive learning also helps reach kids that may otherwise disengage from more difficult subjects. It provides both kinesthetic and visual learning opportunities that capture the attention and get students involved.
Another benefit to incorporating an aquaponics school project in your lesson plan is that it can easily be scaled depending on class size and the amount of space available at the school. Aquaponics works both indoors and outdoors and can be set up as a small in-classroom aquarium or can occupy a larger outdoor space, with or without a greenhouse. Regardless of the size, the same principals and learning situations apply, so even a small aquarium with a few goldfish can be turned into a thriving aquaponic system. Whether your class grows bean sprouts, pretty flowers, or lettuce, they can learn a lot from aquaponics in the classroom.
Backyard Aquaponics for Kids
You can also bring aquaponics into your home by creating a do-it-yourself system right in your own backyard. A backyard aquaponic project for kids is an excellent way to supplement your child’s school lessons at home. It also provides a wonderful bonding experience for the whole family. Working together to set up and maintain your aquaponic system, its working parts, and the living elements of the system makes your family work as a team and provides a lifetime of memories. Starting your own backyard system can also help teach certain values to your child. It introduces or reinforces a focus on the environment, on being self-sufficient, on hard work and responsibility, and on eating nutritious foods.
Additionally, a backyard aquaponic project for kids provides important lessons on STEM topics at home, which can supplement and in some cases surpass the learning opportunities available to your child at school. Teaching your child about science, technology, and engineering at home can bring these often neglected topics to life. These skills are essential to a future in many of the newer, growing career fields available as technology becomes a bigger and bigger part of daily life. Finally, backyard aquaponics present an efficient way to teach responsibility through doing chores, caring for the living components of the system, and providing food for the family.
Indoor Aquaponics for Kids
Another great way to bring raising fish, growing plants, and all the associated benefits into your home is by getting started with indoor aquaponics for kids. If you want to teach your child about STEM topics, create a family bonding experience, and incorporate lessons on responsibility, but you are looking for something smaller and a little easier to manage, indoor aquaponics may be perfect for you. It brings all the benefits without the commitments of space, time, and materials required for a backyard setup. Depending on your resources you can start as small as an aquarium with a few goldfish or build an indoor greenhouse that produces enough vegetables for the whole family.
An aquarium and a sunny window are really all you need to get started with an indoor setup. You and your child can turn a basic aquarium into a convenient and effective place to grow everything from houseplants to herbs for the kitchen. Deep water culture systems adapt perfectly to the size of an aquarium, and a large variety of plants grow well indoors. Ornamental fish in the tank just add to the beauty and excitement of the project, which the whole family can get involved with. Thinking bigger? You can also build an indoor greenhouse system with your child and produce vegetables and leafy greens all year round.
As you can see, starting and maintaining an aquaponics system can be an engaging way to teach kids about everything from STEM topics to growing nutritious foods for the whole family. Bringing aquaponics to the classroom can make school more fun and relates well to a wide range of lesson plans. At home you can use aquaponics to teach your children about chores, growing their own food, eating healthier, and supplement their school education. Even a small indoor system can provide a wealth of information and opportunity to your child. The best part, aquaponics is easy and fun!