Small Fry to Go (SFtG) is a unique, award-winning, year-long, project-based, science, technology, engineering, mathematics (STEM), and communications program where pre-K through 8th grade students, the
ir teachers, parents, and community organize learning around driving questions about ecosystems and habitats. Since 2003, SFtG has been changing the way students learn and teachers teach as they are literally immersed in learning. SFtG involves every student in the school, year-round as they nurture trout, catfish, Striped bass, butterflies, tree frogs, praying mantis and earthworms in a professionally-designed and installed Labitat ( a 146 gallon, 8-foot climate–controlled and UV sterilized mini hatchery). The Labitat is customized to accommodate the study of both terrestrial and aquatic organisms (fresh water and marine). The program crosses all curriculum areas including science, math, reading, language arts, writing, social studies, health education, character education, technology, and career education with over 150 activities and projects that are correlated to State and National standards.
This whole-school program is not just about raising fish. Students and their entire communities are learning the importance of preserving habitats and ecosystems while conserving resources and becoming environmental stewards. Small Fry classrooms, connected via Internet video, link students from Georgia to Florida to Maine to Alaska who communicate to share experiences and understandings of their natural worlds. New Programs like Electronic Trail Guide: Mission Possible Challenges, Hop to it!, Catfish Roundup, Horseshoe Crab Experiences and Turtle Tracks expand student’s horizons to include fresh water, terrestrial and marine ecosystems.
Small Fry to Go Field Studies, fry release activities and virtual field trips take the students from the SFtG Outdoor Environmental Learning Classroom of the School to local parks and nature preserves.
Small Fry to Go Partners: DeKalb County Schools, Duval County Schools, Fernbank Science Center, Intel Foundation, Best Buy Foundation, Foundation RED, Atlanta Archdiocese, Portland Water District, TroutLodge, Chattahoochee Nature Center, Georgia Aquarium, George Lucas Education Foundation, Lowes Foundation, University of Georgia ( UGA) Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources, UGA Cohutta Hatchery, Barnsley Gardens, Georgia Aquarium, UGA Marine Extension Service, Chattahoochee RiverWarden, Owen & Williams Hatchery, Welaka Federal Hatchery, Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area (National Park Service) and Georgia Department of Natural Resources.
Children Served 2011-2012 SFtG (sixteen schools): 11,850 students (pre-K through 8th grades)
Teachers & Staff Served 2012 SFtG (sixteen schools): 1150 teachers, 16 principals, 105 specialists
Awards and Recognition:
- U.S. Department of Education’s #1 Science Program (South East Development Labratory, SEDL – 2006)
- Toshiba Foundation Selected SFtG Program as Elementary Science Program of the year
- WGBH video features SFtG as Project Based Learning Model Program
- Best Buy Teach Award to expand SFtG to Middle School – 2008 ($110K)
- Intel Foundation Elementary Science School of the Year, 2009 – SFtG school awarded ($220K)
- SFtG credited with Increased Student Attendance (all schools)
- SFtG credited with Improved student achievement (all schools)
- SFtG credited with raising middle schools CRCT Science scores to 90+% (100% increase) year to year 2010
- SFtG increases parent participation and community involvement in schools