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is a Human Vacation Like Monarch Migration?
When you go
on a trip, you have to prepare for it. How is a human vacation different
from an animal migration? (For example, have YOU ever traveled without a
suitcase?) As you begin the monarch migration season, compare and contrast
the purpose of travel, the preparations required, and the challenges faced.
You're sure to appreciate the monarchs' remarkable journey even more after
comparing their abilities to our own.
1. Ask students to think about trips they've taken. Why did you go? What
made the trip fun, comfortable, and safe? What caused problems? Invite
stories that illustrate these points.
2. Make two columns on the board or a flip chart. Label one column Human
Travel and the other Monarch Migration. Ask questions that
spark students to compare the two.
the purpose of your trip?
- What things
do you need to bring? (Have you ever traveled without a suitcase?)
- Do you
need to get in shape before you go?
- How do
you find your way?
as students get the idea, let them suggest their own comparisons. Record
the responses on the Migration/Vacation chart.
the "trip" by keeping the Migration/Vacation chart available
to students as they learn more about migration. Students could instead
maintain individual charts in their science notebooks. You can use these
for assessment at the end of the migration season.
Extension: If you track more than one migration this year, have students
make and compare migration/vacation travel charts for different kinds
See what new items students are able to add to their charts during the
Journey North season; ask yourself how these reflect student understanding.
Check that they're able to identify some of the "whys" and "hows"
of migration and
the adaptations (structural and behavioral characteristics) that enable
animals to make these journeys.
Optional Assessment Rubric: Understanding
of Monarch Adaptations
Science Education Standards
have basic needs. Organisms can survive only in environments in which
their needs can be met. (K-4)
- Each plant
or animal has different structures that serve different functions in
growth, survival, reproduction. (K-4)
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