Immaculate Heart Makes a Splash with the Fish Project

Published : Monday, November 13, 2017 | 1:14 PM

Students prepare to take their regular readings of water quality and fish behavior.

For over 10 years, Immaculate Heart High School Biology and Honors Biology students have been taking part in “the fish project”—a tradition that’s still going strong today with science teacher Stacie Miller’s Biology class!

The fish project is a deceptively simple undertaking: students must care for a freshwater fish tank, populated by the fish and/or other aquatic creatures of their choice, for the entire school year.

One group takes the pH of their tank’s water.

To be successful, and ensure the survival of their fish, students must learn how to maintain a fish tank, take regular readings of the water quality, and, of course, feed their fish an appropriate diet. Over the course of the year, students keep a journal where they regularly record water level and temperature, pH, nitrate, nitrite, ammonia and behavioral observations. Using this data, students then write a report discussing the relationship between water quality and fish health.

The project gives students the opportunity to understand what goes into fishkeeping, and encourages many students to begin an aquarium of their own.

One group’s guppies swim energetically in their tank.

“I love watching how committed the students become to their fish, especially those few who have little to no experience caring for fish,” Miller said. “The thing I enjoy most is when the project makes such an impact on a student that she decides to maintain her own tank at home, often starting with the fish she kept here. Every now and then, a student will come back to tell me ‘you should see how big my catfish is now!’”

About Immaculate Heart

Founded in 1906, Immaculate Heart High School & Middle School educates young women in grades sixth through 12th from its central location in the Los Feliz foothills near Griffith Park in Hollywood. The school has a long and distinguished history, with more than 10,000 graduates. Today’s student body of more than 700 young women is both geographically and ethnically diverse, drawing on students from throughout Los Angeles County. Last year, virtually 100 percent of Immaculate Heart graduates matriculated to colleges, including the most prestigious schools in the country.






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