TeaTime4Schools will work together with 150 Austrian schools that will carry out the Tea Bag Index experiment. The students of the HBLA for Viticulture and Pomology Klosterneuburg will carry out the Tea Bag Index experiment four times to measure seasonal changes in the decomposition process.
International Soil Day (05.12.2017)
The HBLA for Viticulture and Pomology Klosterneuburg will start the Tea Bag Index experiments by burying tea bags on the International Soil Day, 5th December, 2017. All other schools will conduct the experiment between June and September 2018.
- Mark 7
At the beginning of 2018, the AGES project team will inform schools that are participating in the experiment. The project website will include background information and videos in order to explain the method. An introductory workshop for all participating teachers will be held at AGES on 18th April, 2018. (7) Teachers will receive all the necessary materials there, as well as personal advice on how to carry out the project.
A total of 150 schools will participate in the project and bury their tea bags in June 2018. They will dig up their tea bags in September. They will also take soil samples that will be analysed at AGES’s laboratories. Thereafter, AGES will investigate the most important soil characteristics: soil organic carbon concentration , total amount of nitrogen, potentially mineralisable nitrogen, labile carbon, texture, soil pH and the plant available phosphorous and potassium.
Summer internship for female students
– Yellow marks
AGES will provide a one month internship opportunity for female students in the summer of 2018 and 2019. This will enable the selected student to get involved in solving the scientific questions that the Tea Bag Index experiment is used for (marked yellow).
Vienna Open Lab (1 – 6)
- Marks 1 - 6: only HBLA for Viticulture and Pomology Klosterneuburg
The Vienna Open Lab will organise four DNA extraction workshops for the students of the HBLA for Viticulture and Pomology Klosterneuburg. Students will analyse the DNA of the tea bags buried at four different points of time, as well as from soil samples and fresh tea bags as a reference. Moreover, the students will learn the basics of molecular biology and soil microbiology
The last workshop will be held in cooperation with Dr. Roey Angel and Dr. Anne Daebeler in order to teach the students more about the soil microbiome. The students will explore the microbial biodiversity of the soil and tea bag samples in order to gain a better understanding of the interaction between seasons, types of soil, decomposition rates and the microorganisms found in the soil and the tea bags. To do this, DNA extracted from the soil samples will be analysed using next generation sequencing analysis of 16S and 18S rRNA. This will allow the students to study the soil microbiome Finally, the students will get introduced to bioinformatic evaluation and interpretation of the gained DNA data.
All participating schools will be invited to a final workshop at AGES (8) in March 2019, in order to learn about the results of the project.