Nature Explorers: Habitat

11/17/2009
Photobucket
~Mali is 4.9 years and Elli is 2.10 years old~
Part One: Wyoming Habitat
For our lesson on habitat, we started by visiting the Wyoming Game and Fish Department and the Forest Service.
They were very helpful and loaded us up with info and stuff.
Checking out his loot once we got home. We used the print information at the end of our study.
We learned that Wyoming has 5 main habitats:
  1. The Alpine Zone
  2. The Foothills Shrubland
  3. Sagebrush and Prairie Grassland Community
  4. Urban and Agrarian Lands (Agrarian means cultivated land)
  5. Aquatic and Riparian Areas (Riparian means of or by the banks of a river)
We talked about how people share the same space with many animals in Wyoming and that we need the same things from our habitat that wildlife does:
  • food
  • water
  • space
  • shelter
But we use our habitat differently than an animal does.
Checking out several species common to Wyoming.
The black tailed prairie dog lives in the Sagebrush and Prairie Grassland Community among 53 species of birds, 58 species of mammals . . .
By the time we were done, they were Junior Game Wardens.
Part Two: Jump In On Brother's Science Experiment To Learn That An Animal's Habitat Can Protect Them From Predators.
The older boys are studying land animals, and their first experiment had to do with how camouflage can protect animals in their habitat. So when they were done, Mali did his own experiment ~ of course it involved chocolate so he was anxious to do so. He went on a hunt to find the candy bars and made a candy "bar" graph.
Part Three: Forest Habitat
After reading several books on different habitats, I let Mali pick which habitat he would like to study further and he picked forest. We own property that is considered forest land, so we went for a hike to see what we could see.
We saw several old stumps and knew that they could be a home for several small animals, such as mice or rabbits, according to Mali. We saw evidence that animals had been there, including deer and turkey tracks and turkey feathers. We have a resident black bear, but did not see any signs that it had been nearby (no scat or tracks). We did see evidence that something attacked a turkey - there were feathers everywhere. It must have carried it off. And on our way back, we saw a woodpecker.
Brush piles and underneath a log are homes for small animals and insects.
We spent time reading about forests, forest fires and animals that live in the forest. And then back home, we used the info that we gathered from the Forest Service to make a forest collage.
Cutting out trees.
More cutting. (Sure one photo would have been enough, but I love my little man to pieces)
Cutting and organizing his collage.
Pasting it all down with rubber cement. . .
. . . while watching a documentary on Noah's Ark.
The finished collage:
Forest animals and trees.
Animals and tracks we find in the forest.
Looking at posters from the forest service and learning about Fire's Role in Nature.
Some of our readings on forests included: Wonders Of The Forest and The Tree in the Ancient Forest*
We briefly touched on other common habitats by reading the books Frog in a Bog*, The Young Scientist Investigates Pond Life, and The Hidden Life of the Meadow.
*Our favorite ones.
I don't think two weeks was long enough to explore habitat. We will for sure have to come back to this on our own again.
Now head over to Blissful Moments to see what she and others did this week to explore habitat. Any other young nature explorers out there? Check out the next topic: forest layers (which will make a lovely extension of our study on forest habitat!).

3 comments:

Loni said...

It looks like they had sooo much fun, and learned a LOT! I especially like the great collages Mali made :D If you don't mind me asking, what was the documentary that you watch? We love HIStory :D and science!

Blessings,
Loni

Andi said...

Hey we have those same posters lol - great habitat study,

Kylie said...

wow, awesome that was realy fun. I know what you mean with the photo's I always go overboard on mine too....but the process of his collage was great to see. :)

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