The Varnett School- Northeast

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Students enthralled by Texas wildlife lesson

By Mr. Rhone
5th Grade Teacher
Northeast Campus

Conservation efforts across the world have sparked controversy among activists for more than four decades. This year Varnett 5th graders have been informed about the endangerment of the wildlife in the State of Texas.

On Monday April 28, students at the Northeast Campus were visited by Ms. Kayla Krueger, an instructor for the Texas Wildlife Association. She tours campuses outside the 610 Loop to teach students about wildlife preservation and interesting facts about local animal life.

She arrived early with a trunk filled with animal skins and skulls. They varied from black bear to bobcat.  As she unpacked her items, you could see the students' amazement as they made predictions and murmured among themselves. She then placed a cloth on the table in the front of the class and a poster board depicting the several species of animals that are native to the region. She informed the students that the poster was a visual word bank for the animals they had to research and learn more about today.

She then navigated the room and asked several questions such as, “What is conservation and why was it important?” I was very proud of the students'  responses, as I took a moment to praise some of them.

After she established background knowledge from her audience, who were as attentive as scientists on the breakthrough of a new finding, she distributed to each group a skull and a book of common animals in our area. Each cluster of children soon became consumed by the challenge. As they worked she passed out furs to match the skulls. When the groups were able to conclude which animal skin and skull matched, they were awarded the picture of the animal and were asked to present their findings to the classroom.

This was a great lesson in inquiry learning and I feel that my students are well versed as to how human interactions and wildlife coexist. Maybe a seed of activism for animal rights has been planted in a students' mind? 

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