Fourth Grade Studies Ocean Ecosystems at Conomo Point
For their second field trip to study ocean ecosystems, fourth graders ventured to the salt marsh on Conomo Point in Essex. Liz Duff from Mass Audubon, who has worked with GUS fourth graders for many years to deepen their understanding of the zones of a salt marsh (high marsh, low marsh, salt panne and mud flat), joined the group. During their exploration, students searched for living things in each zone and collected data. They found clams, periwinkles, green crabs, mummichogs (a small fish), and a white egret. They observed the difference between the salt hay of the high marsh and the cord grass of the low marsh, and they brought home four mummichogs for their salt water aquarium. Back in the classroom, they sorted the living things into the zones using powerpoint. They even modified a favorite classroom activity, four corners, into four zones of the salt marsh ecosystem.