Students dissect sharks at Gordon Cooper Technology Center

Tina Bridenstine
The Shawnee News-Star
AIM Academy students Lincoln and Clint hold up egg sacks and a baby shark found in the shark they dissected.
Hazen and Emmett dissect a dogfish - a type of small shark - Tuesday morning at Gordon Cooper Technology Center.
Saige and Peyton dissect a dogfish - a type of small shark - Tuesday morning.
J.J. holds up a baby shark found inside the shark he was dissecting.
J.J. and Lawson dissect a dogfish - a type of small shark - with the help of a GCTC student Tuesday morning.

A group of homeschool students had the opportunity to do some hands-on learning this week when they dissected sharks at Gordon Cooper Technology Center.

The students are all members of AIM Academy, run by Rhonda Ellard. They range in age from 6 to 13, and come from all over the area.

Two days out of each month, Ellard said, the students meet to do different activities relating to various topics. In April, the students will do STEM, and in May they will learn life skills such as cooking. The shark dissections, which were originally scheduled for February but pushed back because of the winter storm, are part of a life science topic.

A total of 18 students were able to take part over the course of two days, and GCTC's Tina Buckmaster led the dissections.

GCTC students also assisted, teaching about different organs in the sharks as well as about lab safety.

A GCTC student helps Maddox, Ellie and Andrew examine the inside of a dogfish - a small type of shark the students dissected Wednesday morning at GCTC.
Everett and Evelyn check out one of the dogfish at GCTC Wednesday morning.
Aubrey and Joey look at one of the baby sharks inside the shark they dissected.
Micaiah cuts into one of the sharks Wednesday morning at Gordon Cooper.

Tina Bridenstine is a reporter for The Shawnee News-Star. She can be reached at tina.bridenstine@news-star.com. Follow her on Twitter at @tbridenstine1