This lesson is divided into three sections:
-- Preparing for the Lesson.
-- Conducting the Lesson.
-- Managing Resources and Student Activities.
The following materials are recommended:
- Composition books (one per student)
- Atlas (one or two per class of students)
- Maps (one or two per class of students)
- One large wall map
- Charting supplies (colored pens, rulers, pushpins, colored yarn, etc.)
- Computers with access to the WWW (ideally, one per group of three students)
You will need at least one mulitmedia computer workstation with
Internet access. We recommend, as a minimum, using Macintosh II
series running System 7.0 or higher, or a 386 IBM-compatible PC
running Windows 3.1 or higher. We also recommend a minimum modem speed of 14.4K bps, though 28.8K bps is preferable.
Bookmark the following sites:
Provides day-to-day information about the Spring migration north.
Additionally, includes numerous activities for students to complete
involving estimation, language arts, and simple biology, and their ties to the
Project Monarch Butterfly
This is designed for elementary students. Very up-to-date and contains data
relating to various Monarch projects. Created with the cooperation of the
National Wildlife Association. Also discusses tagging and includes an area for
Sandhill Crane Migration Update.
Gives monthly updates of Sandhill Crane migration and flock
activities. Can be used for a longitudinal study or a quick snapshot of migration habits
Sandhill Cranes ... Wings over the Platte.
Displays the activities of a flock of over 200,000
Sandhill Cranes. Provides numerous links, maps, and chronological data.
Birds of Cyprus.
The Island of Cyprus is on the
North-South migration route of various bird species. This contains relevant
information about birds (and butterflies) that migrate through Cyprus including
their migration timing, specific behaviors, and routes.
Wild Wings: Heading North.
Excellent site which allows you to pick a goose and follow it on
Migratory route. Map its trip, view an actual scientist's field journal, and
find migratory animals near you! Includes graphics, maps, pictures, and data
tables (in addition to text).
Whale Times: Fishin' for Facts-Gray Whales.
This is geared toward children. Provides information and facts about the life
and habits of the Gray Whale. Also allows students to access information about
other whales and migratory actions.
Kidproject: Kid link - whale watching.
Text-based site which chronicles actual whale observations made by
students, and which allows the site visitor to see and discover migration habits, actions,
and life cycles of the whale population.
WhaleNet - "Rat" Unit.
Provides information about numerous whales and their migratory
actions. Follows the movements of a specific whale named
"Rat." Maps, movement data, locations, and habits of other groups
of whales can be found at this site.
Site provides information about the behaviors of Humpback
Whales. This site has excellent graphics, numerous pictures, virtual reality
graphics, maps, and data to be downloaded and/or saved.
Introduce and define the term "migration," and ask students to
brainstorm about the kinds of animals that migrate. Ask students to share their ideas with
the class in a discussion format. Compile a list of animals that migrate based on the students' answers. Write the definition and list
on white/black board or large sheet of paper. Ask the students to work in pairs and discuss why animals migrate. Ask students to ponder the
questions: If you could migrate, where would you go? Why?
Have students share their responses with the class.
Distribute composition books to the students. Tell students that the
composition books will be used as research journals. Have them place their
names on the cover and the title of the investigation. Have students write the
definition of migration and the list of animals that migrated in their
composition books. Demonstrate how to use a Search Engine. Do an initial
search on one or two animals.
Divide students into groups of 2 or 3 (however you choose.) Assign one animal to each group to research.
Have students write the name of their animal on the cover of their journal.
Have each group use Web search engines to gather information about animals
that they are assigned and record the information in their journals (habitat,
niche, predators, diet, etc.).
Using a large wall map, explain how different areas of the world have different
climate zones based on geographical characteristics. Have each group of students come up to the map and present the
information they have found about their migrating animal. Next, have the group
map the migration of the animal on the large wall map. After all student
groups have presented their findings, discuss common migrating patterns with
the class. Topics to discuss include similarities and differences in migration patterns,
reasons for migration, and seasons of migration.
Working in Groups
If you have access to one computer in your classroom, you can organize your
class in several ways. Divide your classroom into groups. Instruct
some groups to do paper research or write in their journals while
a smaller group is working on the computer. Bring in books, encyclopedias, etc.
from the library for the group doing paper research. Lead the group working at
the computer through a Web search, taking turns looking for migrating
animals. Rotate groups.
Looking for Web Resources Together as a Class
If you have a large monitor or projection facilities, you can do an Internet search
together as a class. Make sure that every student in your class can see the
screen. Do an Internet search and bookmark the pages that you and your
students think are helpful. Go to a search engine page, allow your students to
suggest the search criteria, and do an Internet search. Again, bookmark and/or
print the pages that you think are helpful. Your class may refer to these later.
Using a Computer Lab
A computer center or lab space with a computer-to-student ratio of one to three
or less is ideal for this lesson. This way, students can help each other
if problems or questions arise. It is often beneficial to bookmark sites for
students ahead of time (see Prep) and make suggestions, this way you can be
sure that students have a starting point.
Submit a Comment:
We invite your comments and suggestions based on how you used the lesson in your classroom.