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Flutters and Flowers

Elementary, Middle

Description

Without pollination many of our fruits, vegetables, nuts and grains could not grow. Insects like the Monarch butterfly provide this essential service for free and consistently support our agricultural industry, while also maintaining natural ecosystems. However, pesticides and habitat loss are causing significant declines in native butterfly and bee species. As part of the “Teaching Tools About Monarchs” resource, this interactive game of “freeze tag” involves students in learning about human impacts on pollinators as they:

  • Participate in role playing where flowers are “frozen” by threats like herbicides until “pollinated” by a Monarch butterfly.

  • Describe how impacts like habitat conversion could eventually destroy Monarch's and the plants that depend on them.

  • Define the ecological role and importance of pollinators.

  • Describe how humans can support Monarch conservation through action.

General Assessment

Recommendation of how and where to use it

This fun, interactive game strengthens Physical Education skills in movement, fair play, safety and respect. Students will also recognize the value of games in building stamina and motor skill development. The associated discussions support Science concepts surrounding biodiversity, interdependence, human impacts on the environment and sustainability.

 

The attention the activity places on an environmental issue will support a student action project that links healthy living and sustainable food choices. A class could design and build a school “food forest” that features trees that provide food for both pollinators and humans. Fruit trees like apple and cherry could be grown along with berry shrubs. Ground cover could include a combination of wildflowers like Milkweed that is essential to Monarch reproduction and edible wild plants such as blueberries. A class might also involve the local community in the project and apply for funding support through Tree Canada and Learning for a Sustainable Future.

Relevant Curriculum Units

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        • Exploring connections strengthens our understandings of relationships to help us make meaning of the world.
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        • Living Systems: Understandings of the living world, Earth, and space are deepened through investigating natural systems and their interactions
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        • Science 4: All living things sense and respond to their environment
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  • Yukon Territory
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        • Science 3: Living things are diverse, can be grouped, and interact in their ecosystems
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        • Science 4: All living things sense and respond to their environment

Themes Addressed

Citizenship (1)

  • Sustainable Consumption

Ecosystems (3)

  • Biodiversity
  • Habitat Loss
  • Interdependence

Food & Agriculture (1)

  • Conventional Farming