Aquatic Education: Fishing for Answers

Sixth-grade students (N = 2,916) attending 127 Missouri public schools were surveyed (86% response) to detennine their behaviors, attitudes, and knowledge about fishing and the aquatic environment. Data were collected using a stratified random sampling procedure. Most students enjoyed fishing (82%), although a few students did not want to fish again (7%). Student scores reflected a need for more education about aquatic ecology (67%), aquatic resource management (62%), and water topics (45%). An analysis of variance indicated students' knowledge scores significantly differed for gender, region, population, swimming ability, and parent's fishing experience. Although about one-third ascribed animal-rights philosophies to fish, students are more likely to develop "no kill" values than to avoid sport fishing. Because most sixth-grade students are interested in, knowledgeable about, and participate in fishing, aquatic education programs should take advantage of students' backgrounds and weave aquatic learning opportunities into the curriculum.

Starting page
563
Ending page
572
ID
28438