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Seafood in Schools gives a boost to Banchory Pupils!

Seafood Scotland’s highly successful Seafood in Schools project is at Banchory Academy this week, presenting a series of interactive workshops to three hundred high school and primary pupils and their teachers.SIS Logo Blue pantone 289 smallerThe event takes place on Tuesday 10th and Wednesday 11th September, and will teach children where seafood comes from, how healthy it is to eat, and how it gets to their plates.   Each pupil will attend three half-hour workshops, whilst a separate session at lunchtime for teachers, will give them more confidence in using seafood as a context for learning.

The wetfish counter display is guaranteed to be a hit, enabling pupils to see and handle a variety of Scottish species and to learn how they are caught, landed and processed.

“We are really lucky to have three staff coming from Marine Scotland; Donna Jarvie a local fisheries compliance officer, Campbell Pert who works on the aquaculture & marine environment programme, and parasitologist Jane Mills, who will be bringing some marine bugs and beasties and a microscope for the children to look at.  They will also learn how to age a fish by counting the rings on its otoliths (earbones),” explained coordinator Ruathy Donald.

Scott Stephen from Banchory Lodge, who was runner up in this year’s Grampian Chef of the Year competition, will be filleting and cooking salmon from Wester Ross Salmon, and also demonstrating to pupils how to cook a smoked haddock and pea risotto.  They are all looking forward to tasting his delicious dishes!

The third workshop concentrates on health and wellbeing and the importance of eating foods high in Omega 3.  Run by Catriona Frankitti of Fish For Health, the session features a tutored tasting session using crab, sardines, mackerel, trout, mussels and herring.

Seafood for the display, tasting and cooking sessions will be supplied by Gourline, who own and supply local fishmongers, ‘the Creel’. 

Parents, grandparents, carers, siblings and guardians are encouraged to attend a community event on the evening of the first day (10th September, from 16.30-18.30), which will give them an opportunity to enjoy the same workshops and to sample seafood delicacies. 

Local langoustine fishermen, author and TV star Jimmy Buchan is attending the event, and bringing along fresh shellfish from his vessel Amity II.  “I love getting involved teaching children about seafood, and it’s great that Seafood in Schools gets parents along as well,” he said.  “We need to catch children young to ensure they grow up to love fish and shellfish, and it’s also important to teach them that the wider seafood industry offers some excellent career options.” 

In addition to students from Banchory Academy, pupils will also attend from Banchory, Drumoak, Hill of Banchory, Durris, Crathes and Strone.  Their transport is funded through the Seafood in Schools project. 

Following the workshops, each participating class undertakes a project of their choosing using seafood as a context for learning, which they must demonstrate to the rest of the school through an assembly or similar activity.  “In this way, we ensure that the Seafood in Schools programme and the messages it teaches, have a very wide reach,” said Ruathy Donald. 

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