By the time students are in Grade 5 they have been studying and making graphs for three years through our Garden Data Collection project. So when we look at the rise and fall in these graphs of a fishing game, it is evident that there is something to pay attention to. In our discussion Grade 5 students acknowledged the over-simplified nature of the game we played; there are things that aren’t accounted for in the data graphed above like the true reproductive rates of individual fishes and the influence of their predators and prey.
Grade 5 students also noticed that our resulting graphs show a difference between sustainable and un-sustainable fisheries that also reflects the real issues facing our oceans. Fortunately, there is a choice; just like there was a choice for players in the game. With careful planning we can have a place where animals and people and business can thrive while habitats remain intact. For more information about sustainable seafood choices and issues facing our oceans visit the Seafood Watch page at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.