ESCTU and Trout in the Classroom
ESCTU is a proud and active participant in New Jersey's successful and growing Trout in the Classroom program (TIC). In 2007, our chapter purchased TIC equipment for New Egypt High School, the first school we sponsored outright. Our chapter has since followed up by purchasing TIC equipment for the East Amwell School in Hunterdon County and the Princeton Child Development Institute for autistic children in Hopewell. As of 2016, ESCTU also provides technical and logistical support for eleven TIC aquariums operating at the following NJ schools:
TIC is a science-based program that teaches children about the importance of cold-water conservation through a hands-on approach to learning. Through the process of raising trout from eggs to fingerlings, the size they are at release time, students learn about the importance of clean, cold water, not only for the trout they are raising, but also for the other organisms, including people.
New Jersey Trout in the Classroom is a collaboration between Trout Unlimited and the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife. The Ernest Schwiebert Chapter of Trout Unlimited, National Chapter 227 based in Pennington NJ, currently sponsors 12 trout in the classroom project in 11 schools in the central NJ region.
ESCTU believes that educating our youth on the importance of cold water conservation is critical to preserving our states watersheds as well as the heritage of trout fishing in the Garden State for future generations.
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ESCTU and the Onion Sack Program
ESCTU continues to lend its support to the New Jersey TIC project by providing onion sack deliveries to two participating TIC schools. ESCTU Conservation and Education Chair, Bill Hannisch, stuffed onion sacks with leaves and debris and then let them soak for several days in a local trout stream. The sacks were then retrieved and delivered to the Bear Tavern School and to the Montgomery Lower Middle school where the students got to sort through the debris to collect and identify small stream organisms classified as macro-invertebrates using stream keys. This highly interactive and educational exercise was enjoyed by the students and their educators alike.