Story by Brooklynn Edwards, Mary Sabo, Shoji Fujita
“I would like to invest in…” was the moment everyone waited for, hoping their product was chosen.
For the past couple of years, the eighth grade science classes have done the Shark Tank PBL during the genetics unit. The task is to combine two organisms using artificial selection then present it to the “sharks” with a PowerPoint and or video.
The PBL lasted two weeks and the job was to teach the kids about genetics in an engaging, fun way, according to Mrs. Susie Fulp, eighth grade science teacher. Many kids enjoyed it because it was fun and a cool experience because it was a fake shark tank, but, 8th grader Alex Smelley wishes you could mix anything together, not just organisms.
In order to combine the organisms, students created punnett squares and what you wanted to be dominant from the two things, why they wanted to mix the two, and what it would look like, which to most, was the hardest part.
When it came to presentation days, there was a panel of judges made up of teachers, administration and parents. Mrs. Lori Katz, assistant principal, Mrs. Liana Giles, social studies teacher, Mr. Todd Stewart, social studies teacher, and Mr. Steven Sturgis, science teacher, were some of the sharks.
The group would go on stage and the butterflies in their stomachs arrived. Someone introduced them and they began explaining what the product was, why they combined the two, the benefits, and how much they were asking for.
Aidan Simoneau said, “It was nerve-racking to present,” and Alex Smelley agreed.
Some examples of the products students created included the vencoon, a cross between a venus fly trap and a racoon, the bocanut, a banana and a coconut, a strawnana, a banana and a strawberry, and a powken, a mix between a chicken and a cow.
Although products people came up with ranged from odd to clever, what Fulp liked best, was not the product, but how the people presented.
“It could be the oddest idea, but if they are enthusiastic and present well then I like it," Fulp said.
All stories, photos and video footage by the seventh and eighth grade newspaper students.