Our Adolescents have recently returned from their Odyssey trip to Seacamp in Big Pine Key, Florida. Seacamp offers interdisciplinary field experiences designed to allow students to raise questions about the natural world, conduct investigations through free exploration, and practice the use of field observations in order to attempt reasonable answers to scientific questions.

 

    

 

Among their many activities during the week, Greenspring students studied the effects of environmental stressors on Cassiopeia (upside-down jellyfish) in their natural habitat, went to Mangrove Island to study mangrove communities, participated in a squid dissection to learn about the internal anatomy of cephalopods, and explored the causes and effects of global climate change on our oceans. Students also participated in several lab programs, including an Algae Lab, the Echinoderm and Fouling Communities Lab, and the Nocturnal Adaptations of Marine Organisms Lab.

 

   

 

Students enjoyed many adventures, including a boat trip to the Coral heads, snorkeling among sponges, a trip to the Blue Hole (an abandoned rock quarry turned wildlife preserve complete with alligators), and swimming with bonnethead and nurse sharks!

 

   

 

Another highlight of the trip was the campfire, in which students enjoyed an astronomy lesson while gazing at the stars overhead. (There may have been a few campfire songs and roasted marshmallows enjoyed in the process!)

 

   

 

On the final day, Greenspring students visited the Sea Turtle Hospital and rehabilitation center in Marathon, Florida and adopted a Kemp’s Ridley Sea Turtle named Bender.

 

 

It was the experience of a lifetime!