As universities, colleges, and schools move learning online in the wake of the coronavirus spread and COVID-19, many educators are interested in how to conduct WILD activities remotely. See below for ideas and resources to guide students through WILD activities at their own location. If you have additional ideas or resources, feel free to send them our way at email@example.com. Stay WILD and healthy!
Courtesy of Kerry Wixted, Maryland Project WILD Coordinator:
Many of WILD's field investigations make it easy to have students go through activities on their own.
Seed Need (Project WILD page 117; student pages here)
- Create a background PPT or video to talk about plant dispersal . Here is a potential video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=06sbmWAzoys
- Have students go outside and collect seeds from different plants. They can use the sock method, masking tape, collect by hand, or use materials like felt that is swept through brush.
- Have them sort the seeds using the investigation sheet. Have them take photos of their sheet and describe some of their reasoning for sorting seeds in those categories. Have the class share photos online with descriptions on where they collected seeds.
- After viewing the class photos, have students identify the most common type of dispersal and explain why they think that is.
- As a STEM extension, challenge students to design a dispersal mechanism that can disperse a lima bean. Options can include: by wind, by water, by animals, etc. See who can make the best design and have them measure how far it will travel. Have them share methods and results online.
Keeping Cool (Project WILD page 200; student resources here)
- Go over thermoregulation and how different organisms survive in a PPT or video.
- Have students select a local reptile and research optimal temperature ranges and habitat preferences.
- Have students design a model of their reptile. Have them take pictures of their models and provide information about habitat preferences.
- Have students create a data sheet to collect at least 3 temperature readings (see sample in text).
- Have students go outside and investigate habitat to evaluate if any of the selected sites would meet the needs of their reptile. Use thermometers to measure temperature and have them take photos of their reptile models in the 3 different habitats. Be sure to stress that temps should be taken within 15 min of each other.
- Once back inside, have students determine if any of the locations they selected may support their reptile. Why or why not. Have them write up observations and conclusions to share with the class.
To celebrate 50 years of Earth Day, we're teaming up with the National Wildlife Federation and Project WET to provide an online professional development opportunity! On March 23, we're launching a FREE online training for educators on climate topics. This self-paced course will prepare you to lead others in a full week of climate education, community building, and storytelling.
Educators who complete the course will also receive access to two activities from Project WET's Climate, Water and Resilience Educator Guide, two Project WILD climate activities, and NWF resources. Did we mention it's all free? Sign up today to reserve your spot in the training!