Two stories this month describe the unique ability of wild creatures to teach kids about their world. At Herring Gut in Port Clyde, oysters teach middle-schoolers elements of math and science, not to mention how the value of a natural resource can be enhanced through cultivation, careful husbandry and hard work. In Portland, fish are the instructors in a Gulf of Maine Research Institute program called LabVenture, where kids are exposed to the scientific method, learning to identify a mystery species through experimentation and analysis of the available information. Hands-on marine studies such as these are growing in importance in Maine’s schools, and all of us are the better for them.