Jerry Mueller to Explore the "New Frontier"
An extraordinary opportunity has arisen for Jerry Mueller, elementary 6-9 teacher in Room 1. Through the invitation of former MCS parent, Board member, and current University of Hawaii professor of oceanography Jim Cowen, Mr. Mueller will join Professor Cowen in a scientific investigation of the ocean floor off the coast of Mexico. Jerry will be out of the classroom from April 24 to May 17, 2002. As a classroom teacher on the voyage, Jerrys role is to participate in the expedition and share his experiences with students.
For this project, funded by the National Science
Foundation, Jerry will be on board the research vessel Atlantis,
the premier research vessel in the country. It is the mother ship
to Alvin, a submersible that can travel to depths of 14,000 feet
to study the ocean floor. The current plans are for Jerry to go
on one of the five dives in Alvin.
Jerry will be exposed to all facets of a major, field-oriented research program, including science and logistical planning, preparation of equipment and supplies, post-cruise analyses, and reports. Through this exposure Jerry will develop an awareness of all the challenges and sustained hard work that comprise a research project.
Our elementary students have all had a glimpse of whats in store for Mr. Mueller. Early this month, both the 6-9 and the 9-12 classes visited the Hawaii Undersea Research Lab at Makapuu. They learned more about the project, and got an up-close look at the Pisces IV and the Pisces V, two submersibles similar to Alvin.
Prior to Mr. Mueller's exploration, the students learned about the ocean floor vent communities including black smokers, tube worms and giant clams. A realistic demonstration was made possible when a parent designed and fabricated a "black smoker" model, using styrofoam, PVC pipe and dry ice.