Life is ultimately about systems - organisms, social/economic systems and ecological systems. To encourage new ways of thinking and systemic institutional change, we are forging development partnerships in schools, prisons, and community institutions to establish a network of Aquaponic Gardens (AquaLabs).
Prototype for Haiti Under Construction at Stonewall Jackson YDC (November 2014)
100 Gardens will be installing a demonstration aquaponics unit in Port au Prince, Haiti in early 2015. The system will be located at the St. Vincent's School for the Handicapped. The system is a scaled down version of the larger system to be installed at the future location of St. Vincent's in 2016 .
The purpose of the system is to give students at St. Vincent's real world experience managing an aquaponic system before the larger unit is installed, which will be used to produce some of the food for the 300+ students at St. Vincent's. The students in the Stonewall Jackson Horticulture Program have designed, with the assistance of 100 Gardens, the prototype training system that will be built in Haiti in early 2015. SJ students have begun fabrication and installation of system components. While building the system, SJ students learn teamwork, leadership, construction and management skills. For updates please follow the blog.
First Fall Harvests From the Garinger High School Aquaponic System (November 2014)
First Harvest of Aquaponic Produce at South Iredell High School (October 2014)
New Partnership between Stonewall Jackson YDC and Cabarrus County Meals on Wheels (10/27/14)
Every week starting October 2014, the horticulture program at Stonewall Jackson YDC is donating produce from the raised beds and aquaponic systems to the Cabarrus Meals on Wheels program. So far the students from SJ have donated more than 15kg of peppers, turnips, and romaine lettuce. Click here to view the Stonewall Jackson YDC Horticulture Blog!
Food Science and Aquaponics Lecture at CPCC (September 19th 2014)
The Food Science class taught by Chef Jess Cochrane was a great audience! Everything from GMO's, the problems with commercial organics, GAP certification, food production in developing countries, and anything food related was explored in an open discussion type setting. Big thanks to all of the students for their enthusiam concerning the future of food!
Experiential Learning Through Aquaponics – Part 1 Garinger High School
Today the AP Environmental Science class, led by Nemal Patel, tested an recorded critical water quality parameters, recorded the amount of fish feed administered, and seeded 250 lettuce plants. Over the course of the year, several classes will perform activities that relate to their specific standards. Follow the blog here!
Anson-East Union Aquaponics Cooperative Workshop (Sep 26th 2014)
The first aquaponics design workshop will take place on September 26th, 2014.
NC New Schools STEM Workshop a Big Hit! (June 2014)
Big thanks to NC New Schools for giving us the opportunity to host a STEM workshop at Stonewall Jackson YDC. Educators from around NC met with students in the Aquaponics Program at Stonewall Jackson and learned how aquaponics can be used as a vehicle for experiential learning. Thanks to all the educator who participated and provided these kind comments!
"What stood out to me was the cross-curricular focus. That's what kids are looking for today. Sometimes kids say "How will I use this?" and when you can put math into a real-life problem they can see the meaning of things like flow rates, radius of the pipe, amount of power in the pump." –Calvin Miller, Teacher, STEM Early College at NC A&T, in reference to how aquaponics touches many academic subjects.
"A key takeaway was how students can channel their interests from one subject or career to another, like the student we saw today whose experience with aquaponics has motivated his interest in owning a mechanic shop. What they need to see is "I am capable of something" and then they ask "So what can I do next?". –Erin Bingham, Teacher, Early College EAST