Activities and Lesson Plans
Come Fly With Me
Texas Parks & Wildlife Magazine, May 2009
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Suggested Topics: birds, habitat, migration, land use.
Related 4th Grade TEKS:
4.6 A, B: Geography: Use geographic tools such as maps
4.7 A, B: Geography: Regions: human activity, landforms, climate, vegetation from physical characteristics
4.6 A, C: Science Concepts : Identify recognizable patterns
4.8 A, B: Science Concepts : Adaptations increase survival
4.9 A, B: Science Concepts : Learned and inherited traits
4.3 A: Number, operation, and quantitative reasoning: Add and subtract to solve problems
- What is migration?
- How many species of birds found in Texas migrate?
- What is a flyway?
- What birds like to fly in a "v" shape?
- What do birds use to help them find their way?
- What are some of the dangers birds must face when they migrate?
- What about migration is inherited? (answer: when to fly, size, shape)
- What about migration is learned? (answer: where to go)
- What senses does Cliff say you should use to identify birds?
- What did Jesse Huth do to learn how to identify birds?
- Learn about migration
- Get out maps and look at migration routes through North and South America. Use flyway maps and examples of migration routes for several birds.
- Watch the video: Rare Cranes Taught to Migrate at http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2007/11/071106-cranes-video-wc.html. This video features captive-bred whooping cranes in Wisconsin being taught to migrate to Florida. Whooping cranes from Wisconisn migrate east to Florida while the cranes from Alberta, Canada, migrate to Texas. Read about Whooping Cranes that winter in Texas. Read about a refuge for whooping cranes at Aransas National Wildlife Refuge.
- nest cams http://watch.birds.cornell.edu/nestcams/camera/index
- Explore bird and other migrating species through Journey North: http://www.learner.org/jnorth/ Consider having your students track migration.
- Become birdwatchers
- Student Research Page
- All About Birds (Cornell Lab of Ornithology)
- Have a field day! See how many species students can find. Give them a week or so to look. Use the Where the Birds Are page to help students learn to look at different layers of habitat. If they are using binoculars, remember the tip to keep your eyes on the target and bring the binoculars up to your eyes.
- Learn good wildlife watching behavior from the Texas Guide for Wildlife Watching.
- Read some of the wonderful articles in this month's issue of TPWD magazine. Then have students cut out pictures of birds in the magazine to make posters, trading cards or greeting cards with fun facts about that bird.
- Have students make presentations about birds. Choose an interesting aspect about birds such as bills, migration, feet, color or other. Use the Learn About Texas Birds Activity Book; the Kids Pages or for more advanced readers, the TPWD species fact sheets as sources for their research. To get you started here are some links:
- Research the wildlife trails. Are you near a trail? What species might you find?
- Other Ideas: