Animals in the OUTBACK A WebQuest for 4th Graders Designed by Christy Nagy Roger Williams University December 2006
Developer Page Student Pages • Introduction • Task • Process • Evaluation • Conclusion • Credits • Developer Materials • Introduction • Learners • Curriculum Standards • Process • Resources • Evaluation • Conclusion • Credits & References
Introduction • This curriculum material was developed as part of the elementary science methods course at Roger Williams University, Bristol, Rhode Island. • I read the book, A Platypus, Probably, which discusses the life of an Australian animal as it hunts for food, mates, builds shelter and raises its offspring. I decided to make a web quest on Australian animals in general. • The WebQuest itself if dedicated to the loving memory of Steve Irwin (1962-2006). Developer Page
Learners The intended grade level for this WebQuest is 4th grade. By the end of 4th grade, students should be able to report about characteristics of organisms as well as their life cycles and environments. This web quest can be adapted for other grades if you alter the overall outcome of the investigation. For example, students could be required to only select endangered species and discuss how humans are helping these animals to not become extinct. Before beginning this WebQuest, students should have some prior knowledge about Australia including where it is located. They should also have some familiarity with reading maps and making graphic organizers. More importantly, students should be able to conduct simple research using the internet even though the web sites are included. Overall, this WebQuestis constructed and organized in a manner which 4th graders should have no problem completing it. Developer Page
Curriculum Standards • Benchmarks for Science Literacy • The Living Environment: Standard 5A - Diversity of Life • A great variety of kinds of living things can be sorted into groups in many ways using various features to decide which things belong to which group. • Features used for grouping depend on the purpose of the grouping. • National Science Education Standards • Life Science • CONTENT STANDARD C:As a result of activities in grades K-4, all students should develop understanding of • * The characteristics of organisms • * Life cycles of organisms • * Organisms and environments • The world has many different environments, and distinct environments support the life of different types of organisms. • Each plant or animal has different structures that serve different functions in growth, survival, and reproduction. For example, humans have distinct body structures for walking, holding, seeing, and talking. Developer Page
Curriculum Standards (continued) Science & Technology CONTENT STANDARD E:As a result of activities in grades K-4, all students should develop * Abilities of technological design * Understanding about science and technology By the end of 4th grade, students should be able to understand simple technology and apply this technology to science. Therefore, students should be able to perform research using the internet and also be able to use designs such as this web quest. Developer Page
Process • This WebQuest is scaffolded so students can easily progress through the assignment. First, students are asked to read an overview of Australia. Students are then divided into groups and asked to select a role. If students are unable to assign their own roles then the teacher will do it for them. These roles will familiarize students with different fields of biology. Students are then asked to research their animal and design their own graphic organizer. A site about different graphic organizers is provided for them. They are also asked to mark the location of their animal on a map to familiarize themselves with geography. Finally, students are asked to report their investigation to the rest of the class. Developer Page
Process (cont’d) Expected duration for this assignment is 30 minutes for research one day and 25 minutes for presentations the next. This way, students have time at home to neatly arrange their organizers. I suspect that students will be unable to find some of the information that is required and also might struggle with marking the exact location of their animal on the map. I will encourage the students to help each other out in their groups and if problems still arise, then come and see me. This Webquest is designed so that all teachers can use it and so all students can use it with minimal teacher assistance. It would be very beneficial for an Australia unit.
Teaching Resources • Materials Needed • Access to computers/internet • Map of Australia • Colored Pencils/Crayons (optional if students want to make their organizers colorful) • Paper Developer Page
Evaluation Developer Page
Evaluation (continued) Developer Page
Conclusion The conclusion illustrates what the students have accomplished as a result of this WebQuest including conducting research, marking a map and selecting and completing a graphic organizer. This conclusion also addresses the content standards by mentioning how they have learned about organism’s characteristics and environment. Developer Page
Credits & References • Based on a template from The WebQuest Page • Benchmarks for Science Literacy • National Science Education Standards Developer Page
Student Materials • Introduction • Task • Process • Evaluation • Conclusion • Credits and References
Crikey! The Crocodile Hunter Needs YOUR help! “Crikey!” Steve Irwin, the crocodile hunter and renowned animal lover needs your help! His next television episode will feature a variety of animals found in his homeland of Australia! Credits & References Task Process Evaluation Conclusion
Task Television producers want to get the show’s ratings at an all time high! You have been hired by the network to help Steve make this the best episode of all time! Don’t worry! Steve will handle the animals however, he needs you to research information about the animals that he should discuss on the show. Steve loves all animals and not only crocodiles therefore you will have to find different animals that he can show to his millions of viewers. So take a trip down under and Happy Huntings! Credits & References Introduction Process Evaluation Conclusion
Process • You be will assigned into groups of 3. • Each group member will read a brief description of AUSTRALIA. • As a group, you will each select a role and research an animal of that role. You will be required to indicate on a MAP where your animal is located as well as design a GRAPHIC ORGANIZERthat you will present to the producers of the show (classmates). • The following information must be included about this animal: • Physical characteristics • Habitat • What it eats • How it reproduces and raises its young • Interesting Facts • This is one role for each group member. The roles are listed below. Mammalogist – As a mammalogist, your job is to study mammals. Mammals are warm blooded animals with hair and (females) secrete milk for their young. Select an Australian mammal. Credits & References Introduction Task Evaluation Conclusion
Process (cont’d) Ornithologist – As an orthinologist, your job is to study birds. Some birds have wings but can not fly. Select an Australian bird. Herpetologist – As a herpetologist, your job is to study reptiles. A reptile is a cold-blooded animal that lays eggs and has scales or plates on its skin. Select an Australian reptile. The websites listed below will help you select an animal for your specific category. Australian Zoo • This will direct you to the Australian Zoo website which lists some animals according to their category. Australian Animal Library • This site will list animals according to their category however, contains very little information about that animal.
Process (cont’d) • The following sites will also assist you. Australian Animals • This site organizers some Australian animals into categories according to their habitat. Koala Page • This site not only talks about koalas, but also includes information about kangaroos, platypus, possums, wombats, lyrebirds, emus and echnidas. Unique Australian Animals • This site will direct you to a page about the platypus however, located on the bottom of the page are links to other Australian animals. Animals & Birds of Australia • This site can be used to find a picture of your animal. Perth Zoo in Australia • This is the site for another zoo found in western Australia.
Evaluation Credits & References Introduction Task Process Conclusion
Evaluation cont… Credits & References Introduction Task Process Conclusion
Conclusion Congratulations! You have become an expert about an Australian organism in a specific field of biology! You have learned about its characteristics, life cycle and habitat. Not only that, but the producers were impressed with your graphic organizer, map and presentation. You have found a lot of valuable information that Steve will most definitely include in the show! Steve and the producers thank you and will hire you again when the crocodile hunter visits Africa. Credits & References Introduction Task Process Evaluation
Credits and References I would like to thank the following sites for use of their graphics in order to make this a colorful and engaging WebQuest. * Australia Zoo * The Crocodile Hunter * Google Images (map of Australia) * Geocities I would also like to thank the following web sites that helped me make an informative and age appropriate WebQuest. * Australia For Kids * Endangered Australian Animals * Koala Page * Unique Australian Animals * Perth Zoo in Australia * Animals & Birds of Australia * Australian Animal Library * Australia Zoo Introduction Task Process Evaluation Conclusion