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This resource engages students in a study of wildlife migration by tracking the fall flight of monarch butterflies to Mexico. Using an on-line tool, Canadian students track monarch butterfly sightings in early fall, along with students from the United States and Mexico.
Before beginning the tracking activity, students learn how to identify a monarch butterfly, relate changing seasonal habitat to the timing of migration, and are trained to calculate migration rates and submit sighting reports. 'Migration Journals" are used to chronicle each step in the process.
The package includes parent letters, maps, slide shows, planning guides, journal pages, many reproducibles, related links, suggested activities, and word glossaries.
A brief description of each lesson follows.
Lesson One: The Magic of Monarch Butterfly Migration (3X60min)
After reading "The Migration of Monarch Butterfly", students locate their home province and the monarch's winter home on a map of North America. Research questions are then explored and keywords defined in "Migration Journals".
Lesson Two: Do You Know A Monarch When You See One? (3X60min)
After reading "Do You Know A Monarch When You See One?", students do a scientific illustration of a monarch butterfly, compare and contrast a monarch and viceroy butterfly using a Venn diagram, and discover words and concepts related to butterfly parts and identification. Students share and discuss their work.
Lesson Three: When, Where and How To Watch Fall Migration (5X60min)
After viewing a Power Point presentation, students describe three ways to monitor fall migration, read and analyze real monarch observations, calculate migration rates, list essential items in a sighting report, and submit a practice sighting report to the Journey North website.
Lesson Four: Fall Habitat Observations (7X60min)
After discussing how a monarch's habitat provides the basic needs for survival, students collect and analyze data on how seasonal changes relate to the timing of fall migration. They use this data to predict the timing of fall migration in their community. Findings are summarized and presented in booklets, scrapbooks, or discovery posters.
Lesson Five: Follow The Migration
Students use the on-line tool to report regularly on monarch butterfly sightings in their areas. They continue to record interesting data and information in their journals as well.
The following tool will allow you to explore the relevant curriculum matches for this resource. To start, select a province listed below.
A positive bias about the importance of students gaining an appreciation and responsibility for the natural world is presented.
|Bias Minimization: Presents as many different points of view as necessary to fairly address the issue(s).|
|Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions||Satisfactory|
The resource emphasizes the need for society to take notice of important biological phenomenon and appreciate the natural world.
|Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions: |
The resource effectively addresses multiple dimensions of problems and solutions. These should include the environmental, economic and social dimensions of the issue(s) being explored.
The resource provides thought-provoking activities that encourage both discussion of the students role as "citizen scientists" and as stewards of our natural world.
|Respects Complexity: The complexity of problems is respected. A systems-thinking approach is encouraged.|
|Action Experience: Provides opportunities for authentic action experiences in which students can work to make positive change in their communities.
Students learn to work cooperatively, collaborate on results, and brainstorm ideas leading them to an appreciation of the importance of biodiversity. This may lead them to take further action in tracking other species through the Journey North website.
|Action Skills: Explicitly teaches the skills needed for students to take effective action (e.g. letter-writing, consensus-building, etc.).|
|Empathy & Respect for Humans||Satisfactory|
|Empathy & Respect for Humans: Empathy and respect are fostered for diverse groups of humans (including different genders, ethnic groups, sexual preferences, etc.).|
|Personal Affinity with Earth||Very Good|
There is an excellent out-of -doors experience.
|Personal Affinity with Earth: Actively encourages a personal affinity with non-humans and with Earth. For example, this may involve practical and respectful experiences out-of-doors.|
The tracking of monarch butterflies in their own community gives this resource a local focus.
|Locally-Focused: Encourages learning that is locally-focused/made concrete in some way and is relevant to the lives of the learners.|
|Past, Present & Future||Satisfactory|
There is no discussion of the past. The activity focuses on real-time results and monitoring. It encourages students to continue the tracking of monarch butterflies and other species in the future.
|Past, Present & Future: Promotes an understanding of the past, a sense of the present, and a positive vision for the future.|
A combination of structured and guided inquiry is used.
Lessons are structured so that multiple/complex answers are possible; students are not steered toward one 'right' answer.
|Interdisciplinary and Multidisciplinary Learning||Good|
Although primarily a science resource, opportunities are also provided to explore concepts in geography, math, art, and language arts.
|Interdisciplinary and Multidisciplinary Learning: Multidisciplinary= addresses a number of different subjects Interdisciplinary= integrated approach that blurs subject lines Good: The resource provides opportunities for learning in a number of traditional 'subject' areas (eg. Language Arts, Science, Math, Art, etc.). Very Good: The resource takes an integrated approach to teaching that blurs the lines between subject boundaries.|
|Discovery Learning: |
Learning activities are constructed so that students discover and build knowledge for themselves and develop largely on their own an understanding of concepts, principles and relationships. They often do this by wrestling with questions, and/or solving problems by exploring their environment, and/or physically manipulating objects and/or performing experiments.
|Values Clarification||Poor/Not considered|
Poor- Students have limited opportunities to identify and express their values.
|Values Clarification: Students are explicitly provided with opportunities to identify, clarify and express their own beliefs/values.
Both cognitive and affective domains are addressed. There are no accommodations suggested for struggling learners, although appropriate groupings would address some of these challenges.
|Differentiated Instruction: Activities address a range of learning styles/different intelligences. They teach to both cognitive and affective domains. Accommodations are suggested for people with learning difficulties.|
|Experiential Learning||Very Good|
|Experiential Learning: Direct, authentic experiences are used.
|Cooperative Learning: Group and cooperative learning strategies are a priority.
|Assessment & Evaluation||Poor/Not considered|
Poor- although reflection questions and answers are provided the lesson guides have no assessment tools for capturing formative or summative information about learning and performance.
|Assessment & Evaluation: Tools are provided that help students and teachers to capture formative and summative information about students' learning and performance. These tools may include reflection questions, checklists, rubrics, etc.|
|Peer Teaching: Provides opportunities for students to actively present their knowledge and skills to peers and/or act as teachers and mentors.
Although no relevant case studies are given in the lesson, links provide a wealth of information.
|Case Studies: Relevant case studies are used. Case studies are thorough descriptions of real events in real situations that can be used to examine concepts in an authentic context.|
|Locus of Control||Satisfactory|
Although the resource is specific with regards to program content and the medium in which students work, there are opportunities in extension activities to go deeper into chosen issues.
|Locus of Control: Meaningful opportunities are provided for students to choose elements of program content, the medium in which they wish to work, and/or to go deeper into a chosen issue.|