Gering Gives Truman Faculty Forum About Katydids to Students at Ray Miller Elementary School


Jon Gering, associate professor of biology, presents katydid information to third graders at Ray Miller Elementary School in Kirksville recently.

on Gering, associate professor of biology, presented a Truman Faculty Forum titled “The Katydids: Model Organisms for Citizen Science” at 9 a.m. Oct. 12 at Ray Miller Elementary School.

Third graders were able to attend Gering’s presentation, which covered basic information about the katydids: what characters distinguish them from crickets and grasshoppers, what they look like, and what sound they make. He also provided the children and their families with keys, developed by Gering and his students, to identify katydid sounds. Finally, he provided live katydids that were handled by the children.

The main purpose of the presentation was to foster a sense of ‘biophilia’ by exposing children to this abundant, widespread, and charismatic family of insects that are model organisms for citizen science.

The Truman Faculty Forum was created in 2003 to give faculty the opportunity to present their research and creative work to the Truman community and to enhance the importance of scholarship and creativity in the culture of our institution. In the spirit of the liberal arts, the Forum provides one more way of exposing all members of the Truman community to various fields of investigation. A variety of formats are offered including public lectures, classroom-style symposia, performances, and gallery exhibitions. By opening the presentations up to the public, the Forum is yet another way that Truman serves the Kirksville community at large.
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