Outdoor Nature Explorers kicked off at Eagle Creek Elementary in Shakopee. We started out by sorting creatures into different categories. One student wanted to sort by where the animals live - in the air, in water, and on land. Another way we sorted was by coverings - fur, scales, feathers, and not sure. Then we sorted by mammals, fish, birds, insects, reptiles, and amphibians. Each of these animals lives nearby either on land or in the Minnesota or Mississippi Rivers.
Then I told my students that we will look for these same animal pictures outside around the school. I have another set of images but instead of the animal name a different word is printed.
As we discover each hidden picture outside, we record the word in the appropriate box on our recording sheet. When all of the words are located and recorded a riddle is revealed. Unfortunately my riddle was not all that great!
Here it is:
How can you tell the difference between two trees?
You listen to their bark.
I admit, it is not that funny and my students did not think it was either which I then found funny. But they were very good sports and enjoyed the hunt anyway.
We lost the mosquito picture. It could still be in its hiding place or it blew away. It could turn up or someone will make an interesting discovery!
This activity was inspired by a post from Heyer Learning and I tweaked it to fit my group. I am so happy that more teachers are taking their students outside. The kids love it and the learning really sticks when students are active and engaged.
I made a Quizziz with the same animal pictures. Test your skill at sorting animals into their classes. Click HERE to play.
During nature class this week at Oak Grove we enjoyed sitting in a stick fort and reading the picture book, The Great Indoors written by Julie Falatko. Each year, the animals of the forest spend a week in a human house and enjoy the amenities available like indoor plumbing, electricity, and kitchens. We loved that we read this outside while the animals in the story were inside. Click here to go to page to reserve from the Hennepin County Library System.