Bird Identification

This website is a fantastic resource for learning about Missouri birds. It even gives you identification tips for some species. We will leave at 9:30 Thursday morning for our field trip. Be sure to bring binoculars if you have some.

Bird Study

Please sign up here if you would like to participate. We will be meeting for a class at school Monday morning, May 7th and then going on a field trip Thursday morning, May 10th. We will learn some basic bird anatomy, characteristics, behavior, and identification tips and have the opportunity to go birdwatching with an Audubon birding expert at Valley Water Mill Park.

Cave Projects

Here are some options for cave-related projects you might find interesting after our visit to Smallin Cave on Monday. You may choose to do any number of these projects (including zero) or design a project of your own.

  1. Cave model – using clay or other materials, design a model of a cave that includes labeled cave features such as stalactites, stalagmites, soda straws, flowstone, popcorn, etc.
  2. Mapping caves – create a map of the state of Missouri that shows the location and number of caves around the state.
  3. Cave current event – choose a news article such as this one that features new cave discoveries. Read it, and write a response. Or read it with a partner or small group and discuss the article.
  4. Field trip – visit another cave in the area, and create a photo essay about the cave. Display at art walk.
  5. Lab – Go to this website to learn about cave formations and complete the lab that is outlined on the website. Share the process and results via a presentation or report.
  6. Around the world – choose a cave from anywhere around the world that you would like to visit, and research the location and unique features of the cave.
  7. Wildlife – choose one or more cave animals to research, and share your findings. You could focus on species in Missouri, endangered species, adaptations for cave life, etc.

Cave Ecology

 

Smallin Cave – Ozark, MO

Visit Smallin Cave with us on Monday, April 16th. We will leave school at 9:30am and return around lunchtime. While at the cave, we will explore the history and ecology of the cave. There are many animals, fossils, and historical topics to research and/or develop into larger projects. This would be a good science study opportunity before the school year ends. 🙂

DNA

Image result for dna

Tuesday, March 27th, we will begin a workshop to investigate the structure, function, and extraction of DNA. We will create an edible DNA model, discuss DNA’s importance, create glowing bacteria using a bioluminescent gene, and extract strands of our own DNA from our cheek cells.

Shark Orders

Image result for shark profile mouth openLet’s meet Thursday (3/22) morning at 10:00am to discuss the different orders of sharks and wrap up our workshop.

Shark dissection Thursday

If you are participating in the shark dissection, this video may be helpful for you to watch. It shows some external and internal anatomy that we will observe and identify. Plus it prepares you for what the shark will look like. Also, if you take a video or photos as you dissect, you could use it as your blog post for this activity.

Shark Week starts March 5th

If you’re interested in learning about the world of sharks and rays, join us for a workshop on cartilaginous fishes where we will discuss their behavior, anatomy, and ecology. We will conclude with a shark dissection.

Probiotics for Plants

Image result for plant  probioticsIf you are interested in participating in the botany experiment “plants and probiotics” please join me Monday morning (12/4) for a discussion about a timeline for experimentation. In addition, please read the following short article from the American Society of Agronomy.

Probiotics – for plants  *helpful vocabulary hint: Endophytes are organisms like bacteria or fungi that live in between the cells in plant tissue.

Consider the following questions about the reading. 1) Briefly describe Sharon Doty’s experiment.  2) What happened to the rice plants that received transferred endophytes?  3) What is the potential impact of Doty’s experiment on chemical fertilizer use?