School of Natural and Environmental Sciences

Fish and Ships

Fish and Ships

This innovative cross-curricular project was run by the School of Marine Science and Technology over a two year period.

This project looked at STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) engagement in the transition period from primary to secondary school. Our project partner universities were Sunderland, Teesside and Northumbria. 

What we did

For the Newcastle project, pupils from four primary schools worked alongside Dove Marine Laboratory staff.

Each school took ownership of one of a sites along the River Tyne reaches and estuary. At each of these sites, a particular type of boat has been dominant:

  • at North Shields there is a strong fishing community
  • at Hebburn the ship yards have traditionally provided work 
  • on the Quayside Tall Ships and Keelboats were common
  • Wylam was a popular Victorian pleasure ground with rowing boats and a ferry

The pupils investigated the uses and structure of the vessels at their selected study site.

They considered how the different industries have shaped the communities that worked in the area. They explored how the biodiversity in the river differs at each site as the environmental characteristics change.