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This outdoor inquiry explores the fascinating underwater world of a local pond. Using simple tools, students are able to practice the science skills of observation and classification to locate and describe aquatic organisms. The lesson places a strong emphasis on responsibility and respect for the natural area being visited which also strengthens conservation values in young children. Pre-visit and post-visit classroom projects supplement the in-depth learning experience where students deepen their understanding of:
This lesson encourages scientific exploration and supports learning related to habitat relationships, adaptations and wetland ecology. The activity would also be a great addition to units that are examining the diversity of life.
An important component of this resource is the message that we must all "become pond stewards". A number of citizenship ideas are presented such as collecting litter or developing interpretative signs to inform the local community about the values of these habitats. A school wide conservation project could involve students in working with an organization like Ducks Unlimited Canada to “adopt” a local pond and develop the site as a community green space as a model of sustainability in action.
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