Garden Update: April 2, 2004
This Week's Tulip Garden Data
For many of us March brings the first welcome breath of spring. March also brings freak snow storms, tricky fog and treacherous mud. As of yesterday, though, the calendar says, “April.” This month will bring us even longer days, warmer temperatures and more blooming tulips! Take a look at this week’s map and remember back one month ago. What changes do you notice happened in March 2004?
Which Comes First, the Tulips or the Leaves?
Here's an observation that only takes an instant to make: Look out the window (or better yet, go outside) and see if "leaf-out" has occurred. We define "leaf-out" as the moment the leaves on a tree are as large as a quarter. (This is also when the leaves are big enough to make full shade under the tree.)
Let’s make this leaf-out map show us a more accurate picture of spring! Report your observations to Journey North – wait 5 minutes for the map to display your sighting and then watch the MapServer each day. Pass the word to friends and relatives far and wide and let’s watch the greening up of the continent!
Seasons and Cycles: Focusing with O'Keeffe on the Details
was an artist finely attuned to the sights and sounds of the natural world.
In addition to looking closely and intimately at her subjects, she often
wrote of the things she heard around her: blowing wind, deep stillness,
rustling trees and animal sounds. She transferred these sounds into the
mood of her paintings using color and form.
Use this art lesson to take a moment to focus on the beauty of springtime in the natural world around you.
My Native Plant Field Guide
Did you know that every one of us live in a place that contains native plants special to just the place we live? The geography, climate, and microclimate of each special location combine to make a habitat just right for the plants.
Botanical field guides are useful resources for identifying and learning about your local plants. Creating your own personal or class guide is a great way to preserve and record botanical history for now and the future.
Try your hand at making a field guide for the native plants in your area.
Pattern Puzzler: Discussion of Challenge Question #6
Ever think about the pattern of emerging and blooming gardens? Do you find yourself looking at the tulip map and wondering why all the gardens in the same area don't come up at the same time?
This question stimulated some students in Woburn, MA to think. Holly Cerullo’s 7th graders found they had more questions than answers- a nice reminder of how challenge questions lead to real inquiry in the Journey North classroom.
Here are some of their thoughts and questions:
And in conclusion they made this thoughtful statement: “We figure that whether or not the planting rules were followed exactly could effect the emerging dates no matter where the gardens are.”
Teacher Tip: JN and Inquiry
Some activities in Journey North prescribe questions, procedures, and data for students to interpret; others challenge students to ask their own questions and design investigations to try to answer them. This reflects the continuum of classroom-based inquiry. Most Journey North classroom science explorations fall somewhere in between.
In an inquiry-oriented classroom, the teacher is a co-explorer and guide who cultivates curiosity and challenges students to think and act like scientists as they explore intriguing questions. It is a place where diverse ideas are valued and students feel safe taking risks to "think out loud" as they share, debate, and justify emerging ideas. Students have time and opportunities to explore, experiment, test and refine ideas as they collaboratively build understanding. But it takes time, practice, and sometimes, a shift in teaching strategies, to create a classroom where inquiry can flourish.
Find out more about inquiry strategies:
What Does Blooming Mean to a Tulip: A Journey into Inquiry
- Hubert Dyasi
Go out into your tulip garden this week and focus on drawing and writing. What do you know about your tulips? Now that they are above ground – growing and maybe even blooming – take the time to look and think about the anatomy and life cycle of the plants you explored as bulbs last fall.
Calculate to Compare! Challenge Question #8
It is impossible to know if spring is on time! Sometimes it seems like it is earlier this year, and sometimes it seems later.
Last time we asked you to compare this spring with last
spring, but we gave you some statistics to help you compare them like
Our Tulip Expert Gives Us the Scoop on Cold Weather and Tulips
How to Respond to Today's Challenge Questions:
an e-mail message to: firstname.lastname@example.org
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