Students learn science lessons at power plant

| May 18, 2017
Coshocton Elementary School sixth grader Michael Mills showed a cat fish to his classmates during the AEP Conesville Plant Earth Day celebration on May 17. Josie Sellers | Beacon

Coshocton Elementary School sixth grader Michael Mills showed a cat fish to his classmates during the AEP Conesville Plant Earth Day celebration on May 17. Josie Sellers | Beacon

COSHOCTON – Around 800 area fifth and sixth graders got hands-on lessons on nature, wildlife, the environment and a variety of other science fields on May 17 at the annual AEP Conesville Plant Earth Day celebration.

This was Jessica McClain’s third time at the event.

“I love this because they get to see nature in Ohio and it goes right along with our life science lessons,” said McClain, who teaches fifth and sixth grade science at Union Elementary School.

The students had more than 20 stations to visit during the day, but early on Wyatt Weese said his favorite was the fish of Ohio display.

“It’s fun getting out and learning somewhere other than the classroom,” said the fifth grader at Union.

Michael Mills, a sixth grader at Coshocton Elementary School, also enjoyed learning about fish. He eagerly picked up and showed off a cat fish that employees of the Ohio EPA Division of Surface Water brought out of the river that runs by the power plant.

“I enjoy fishing,” Mills said. “I caught a four pound smallmouth bass in this river once. I like everything about fishing, but especially because it gets you out and you’re not just sitting at home.”

The students were educated at this station by Ohio EPA Division of Surface Water employees Drew Phillips and Brian Alsdorf. They study fish in rivers and streams and check the quality of the water and the habitat of the fish there and what they will tolerate or are sensitive to.

AEP employees assisted with the event and taught them about what they do at the plant and what can happen if you aren’t careful around power lines.

“I liked learning about electricity and when they blew things up,” said Makenzie Schumaker, a sixth grader at Ridgewood Middle School.

Timothy Romine liked learning about mussels.

“We learned about how they live and how they adapt,” said the Ridgewood sixth grader.

His classmate Zane Stanton enjoys science and said he likes the hands-on learning that comes with Earth Day.

Royce Shaffer, another sixth grader at Ridgewood, agreed with Stanton.

“It’s better seeing things live rather than in class,” he said.

 

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    Josie Sellers

    About the Author ()

    I started my journalism career in 2002 with a daily newspaper chain. After various stops with them, I am happy to be back home! I graduated from Coshocton High School in 1998 and received a Bachelor of Arts in Communication in 2002 from Walsh University. I also earned several awards while working for daily papers, including being honored by Coshocton County’s veterans for the stories I wrote about them. I am honored and ready to once again shine a positive light on Coshocton County. I also am the proud mother of a little girl named Sophia!