The TEVA experience started as soon as the students got off the bus with a musical welcome from the staff. The children learned many of the important lessons on environmental issues through performances, games, workshops, and hands-on explorations in the ecosystems of TEVA. Judaic studies were also a large part of TEVA and how our religion teaches us to care for the environment we live in.

Some of the activities the students participated in were: a night walk, camp fire, hiking up the mountain to “The Overlook”, examining the pond ecosystem as well as observing the animals on the farm and seeing where the vegetables we ate while we were there came from. We were able to make wild tea and cheese while listening to instruments made from recyclables. The students even learned how to build a shelter from the materials and environment around them.

The children were able to connect this whole experience to the sixth grade curriculum on Environmental Science and the Leader in Me Program. They are presently studying population, communities, ecosystems and biomes, from observing biodiversity and physical changes that occur within a mini pond developed in class and comparing it to the TEVA mini pond ecosystem brought back from the trip. The students are also participating in “Bringing it Back to School” by becoming active members in the GBDS Green Team to get our school closer to a zero waste community.

Click here to see pictures from TEVA.

Mrs. Robin Kelly

How do oxygen and carbon dioxide flow through an ecosystem? How does the Sun's energy get converted into sugar? What happens to our food after we digest it? These are just some of the questions that the 7th and 8th graders can now answer with confidence after completing lab activities on photosynthesis and cellular respiration. The students designed experiments to show how the amount of light that a plant is exposed to influences the rate of photosynthesis in an Elodea plant. They are currently conducting experiments on how temperature and sucrose concentration affect the rate of cellular respiration in yeast cells. The students were amazed at how quickly yeast cells produce carbon dioxide and captured some of the gas inside of a balloon. Next week, they will investigate how bacteria convert milk into yogurt by making a batch of it!


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The 7th and 8th grade students are enjoying their study of matter, atoms, and molecules. They started by learning the properties of the atoms essential for life: hydrogen, oxygen, carbon, and nitrogen. Their lab activities involve building models of both simple and complex molecules including carbohydrates, lipids, proteins, and nucleic acids. Their most recent lab activity involved using chemical indicators to test foods for the presence of sugars and starches. This introduction to organic chemistry builds the foundation for learning chemical reactions such as photosynthesis and cellular respiration.
Mrs. Sheila Barbach
Academies Coordinator
Science Coordinator

Check out these photos of our 6th grade science class from exploring the ecosystem surrounding GBDS. The students investigated the different organisms within the area. They recorded the biotic and abiotic factors within the ecosystem and their relationship to each other.

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By: Mrs. Robin Kelly

Mrs. Schwack's sixth grade Language Arts class presented an erudite program discussing the formation, history, and goals of the United Nations in honor of United Nations Day. Each student spoke about various aspects of the organization. They also each created beautiful replicas of many countries' flags. The sixth grade worked very hard, and their dedication was obvious to all students, teachers and administrators present!
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