Monarch Migration Maps Monarch Butterfly Facts Monarch Migration News Monarch Butterfly Home Page Report Your Sightings! Monarch Butterfly Resources Monarch Home Page Journey North Home Kids Monarch Butterfly

National Science Education Standards
Winter Monarch Lessons

Journey North's Monarch Migration project helps bring a wide range of National Science Education Standards to life. Browse this chart by content area and then link directly to information and activities that reflect your teaching goals. As you review the activities, consider how you can adapt them to your unique context and students' abilities. (Also see the Journey North for Kids Learning Standards and Themes.)

Science as Inquiry Earth and Space Science
Physical Science Science in Personal and Social Perspectives
Life Science History and Nature of Science

National Science Education Standard
Journey North Monarch Activity or Lesson

A. SCIENCE AS INQUIRY
ABILITIES NECESSARY TO DO SCIENTIFIC INQUIRY

Ask a question about objects, organisms, events. (K-4)

Video Visits to Sanctuaries: Pictures to Poetry
Monarch Population Dynamics
Write a Field Guide for Overwintering Sites
Camouflage in the Overwintering Colonies
Cascading Behavior
The Forest as Blanket, Umbrella, and Hot Water Bottle

Use data to conduct a reasonable explanation. (K-4)

Monitoring the Sierra Chincua Sanctuary
The Effect of Snow on Monarchs
How is the Weather Today in the Overwintering Region?
How Cold Are the Overwintering Sites in Mexico?
Temperature and Elevation: The Monarchs Are Nearly Two Miles High
Tropical vs. Temperate: Watch the Seasons Change
Food at the Overwintering Sites
Mexico's Wet and Dry Seasons: Precipitation Graph
The Climate of the Monarch Sanctuaries: What Do Two Pictures Tell You?

Communicate investigations and explanations. (K-4)

 

Write a Field Guide for Monarch Overwintering Sites
Identify questions that can be answered through scientific investigations. (5-8) Cascading Behavior
Develop descriptions, explanations, predictions, and models using evidence. (5-8) Monitoring the Sierra Chincua Sanctuary
Food at the Overwintering Sites
Use math in all aspects of scientific inquiry. (5-8) Counting All Butterflies: Estimating Pop. Size
UNDERSTANDINGS ABOUT SCIENCE INQUIRY
Science investigations involve asking and answering a question and comparing that to what scientists already know about the world. (K-4) Storm Kills Over 75% of Overwintering Monarchs
Why Do Monarchs Shiver?
Living on Lipids: Surviving on Stored Energy
The Effect of Snow on Monarchs
The Cloud Effect
Cascading Behavior
Food at the Overwintering Sites
How Many Monarchs in Mexico?
Monarch Habitat: Dr. Calvert Looks at Space from a Monarch's Point of View W

Scientists use different kinds of investigations depending on the questions they are trying to answer. Types of investigations include describing objects, events, and organisms; classifying them; and doing a fair test (experimenting). (K-4) Storm Kills Over 75% of Overwintering Monarchs
Monitoring the Sierra Chincua Sanctuary
Why Do Monarchs Shiver?
Millions of Monarchs Eaten By Predators
Camouflage in the Overwintering Colonies
Living on Lipids: Surviving on Stored Energy
The Effect of Snow on Monarchs
Migration Monitoring Sites
Why Are Those Butterflies Behaving So Strangely?
Food at the Overwintering Sites
How Many Monarchs in Mexico?
Simple instruments, such as magnifiers, thermometers, and rulers, provide more information than scientists obtain using only their senses. (K-4) How Many Millions of Monarchs in Mexico?
How Many Monarchs in Mexico?
Scientists develop explanations using observations (evidence) and what they already know about the world. Good explanations are based on evidence from investigations. (K-4) Storm Kills Over 75% of Overwintering Monarchs
Why Do Monarchs Shiver?
Living on Lipids: Surviving on Stored Energy
Cascading Behavior
Food at the Overwintering Sites
Why Not Estimate the Number of Butterflies
Different kinds of questions suggest different kinds of scientific investigations. Some involve observing and describing objects, organisms, or events; some involve collecting specimens; some involve experiments; some involve seeking more information; some involve discovery of new objects and phenomena; and some involve making models. (5-8) Storm Kills Over 75% of Overwintering Monarchs
Monitoring the Sierra Chincua Sanctuary
Why Do Monarchs Shiver?
Millions of Monarchs Eaten By Predators
Camouflage in the Overwintering Colonies
Living on Lipids: Surviving on Stored Energy
The Effect of Snow on Monarchs
Food at the Overwintering Sites
How Many Monarchs in Mexico?
Technology used to gather data enhances accuracy and allows scientists to analyze and quantify results of investigations. (5-8) How Many Millions of Monarchs in Mexico?
Current scientific knowledge and understanding guide scientific investigations. (5-8) Why Do Monarchs Shiver?
The Cloud Effect
Scientific explanations emphasize evidence, have logically consistent arguments, and use scientific principles, models, and theories. The scientific community accepts and uses such explanations until displaced by better scientific ones. When such displacement occurs, science advances. (5-8)   Food at the Overwintering Sites W
Citizen Science and Journey North W S 
Mathematics is important in all aspects of scientific inquiry. (5-8) Storm Kills Over 75% of Overwintering Monarchs
Monarchs in the News: Populations Rebound
How Many Millions of Monarchs in Mexico?
Counting All Butterflies: Estimating Population

B. PHYSICAL SCIENCE
PROPERTIES OF OBJECTS AND MATERIALS

Materials can exist in different states?solid, liquid, and gas. Some common materials, such as water, can be changed from one state to another by heating or cooling. (K-4)
Storm Kills Over 75% of Overwintering Monarchs
The Effect of Cold, Wet Weather on Monarchs
Where Do Monarchs Get Water in the Winter?

C. LIFE SCIENCE
THE CHARACTERISTICS OF ORGANISMS

Organisms have basic needs. For example, animals need air, water and food; plants require air, water, nutrients, and light. Organisms can survive only in environments in which their needs can be met. The world has many different environments, and distinct ones support the life of different types of organisms. (K-4) Wintering South of the Border: Sharing a Small Area
The Monarch's Forest Ecosystem
Monarch Migration Updates for Sanctuary Schools
Exploring the Monarch's Winter Habitat
Can YOU Find the Monarch's Winter Home in Mexico?
More Photos, Maps, Landscape Views
Food at the Overwintering Sites
Mexico's Wet and Dry Seasons: Precipitation Graph
Where Do Monarchs Get Water in the Winter?
Water Resources for Sanctuary Region Families
Monarchs are Cold-blooded Creatures: The Basics
Scientists Learn From Butterflies: More Land is Needed
Each plant or animal has different structures that serve different functions in growth, survival, reproduction. (K-4) Camouflage in the Overwintering Colonies
Mating Before Spring Departure
Why Don't Cold Butterflies Fall?
The behavior of individual organisms is influenced by internal cues (such as hunger) and by external cues (such as a change in the environment). Humans and other organisms have senses that help them detect internal and external cues. (K-4) Wintering South of the Border: Sharing a Small Area
How Much Space Does a Monarch Colony Need?
Seasonal History of a Monarch Colony
Monitoring the Sierra Chincua Sanctuary
Living on Lipids: Surviving on Stored Energy
The Cloud Effect
Monarch Migration Updates for Sanctuary Area Schools
Why Are Those Butterflies Behaving So Strangely?
Why Do Monarchs Shiver?
Can YOU Find the Monarch's Winter Home in Mexico?
More Photos, Maps, Landscape Views
Tropical vs. Temperate: Watch the Seasons Change
Food at the Overwintering Sites
Where Do Monarchs Get Water in the Winter?
Close Quarters: How Many Butterflies on a Branch?
Monarch Habitat: Dr. Calvert Looks at Space from a Monarch's Point of View
Visiting the Monarch Sanctuary with Doctor Lincoln Brower
Searching for Monarchs in the Sierra Chincua Sanctuary
Field Notes From Mexico
Monarchs are Cold-blooded Creatures: The Basics
LIFE CYCLES OF ORGANISMS
Plants and animals have life cycles that include being born, developing into adults, reproducing, and eventually dying. The details of this life cycle are different for different organisms. (K-4) Mating Before Spring Departure
Monarch Migration Updates for Sanctuary Area Schools

ORGANISMS AND THEIR ENVIRONMENTS

All animals depend on plants. Some animals eat plants for food. Others eat animals that eat plants. (K-4) Millions of Monarchs Eaten by Predators
An organism's behavior patterns are related to the nature of that organism's environment, including the kinds and number of other organisms present, the availability of food and resources, and the physical characteristics of the environment. When environment changes, some plants and animals survive and reproduce, and others die or move to new locations. (K-4) How Much Space Does a Monarch Colony Need?
Introducing Dr. Bill Calvert
Monarch Population Dynamics
Why Do Monarchs Shiver?
Exploring the Monarch's Winter Habitat
Why Are Those Butterflies Behaving So Strangely?
Why Do Monarchs Shiver?
How Cold Are the Overwintering Sites in Mexico?
Where Do Monarchs Get Water in the Winter?
Humans depend on their natural and constructed environments. Humans change environments in ways that can be either beneficial or detrimental for themselves and other organisms. (K-4) Domestic Uses of Wood: A Ranch Tour with Noemi's Dad
Deforestation Maps of Monarch's Forest
Deforestation in the Sanctuaries: Domestic Uses of Wood
Causes of Deforestation
Monarch Conservation News From Mexico
About Conservation Perspectives
Storm Kills Over 75% of N. America's Migratory Monarchs
Monarchs in the News: Population Rebounds
Measure Your Ecological Footprint
Water Resources for Sanctuary Region Families
Life in the Sanctuary Region
Why Not Estimate the Number of Butterflies

STRUCTURE AND FUNCTION IN LIVING SYSTEMS

Living systems at all levels of organization demonstrate the complementary nature of structure and function. (5-8) Why Don't Cold Butterflies Fall?
REPRODUCTION AND HEREDITY
Reproduction is a characteristic of all living systems; because no individual organism lives forever, reproduction is essential to the continuation of every species. Some organisms reproduce asexually. Other organisms reproduce sexually. (5-8)

Mating Before Spring Departure

 

In many species, including humans, females produce eggs and males produce sperm. An egg and sperm unite to begin development of a new individual. That individual receives genetic information from its mother (via the egg) and its father (via the sperm). Sexually produced offspring never are identical to either of their parents. (5-8) Mating Before Spring Departure
Every organism requires a set of instructions for specifying its traits. Heredity is the passage of these instructions from one generation to another. (5-8) Mating Before Spring Departure
REGULATION AND BEHAVIOR
All organisms must be able to obtain and use resources, grow, reproduce, and maintain stable internal conditions in a constantly changing external environment. (5-8) Entire Monarch Study
How Much Space Does a Monarch Colony Need?

Seasonal History of a Monarch Colony
Wintering South of the Border: Sharing a Small Area
Exploring the Monarch's Winter Habitat
Why Are Those Butterflies Behaving So Strangely?
Why Do Monarchs Shiver?
Temperature and Elevation: The Monarchs Are Nearly Two Miles High
Food at the Overwintering Sites
Mexico's Wet and Dry Seasons: Precipitation Graph
Monarch Habitat: Dr. Calvert Looks at Space from a Monarch's Point of View
Visiting the Monarch Sanctuary with Doctor Lincoln Brower
Monarchs are Cold-blooded Creatures: The Basics

 
Regulation of an organism's internal environment involves sensing the internal environment and changing physiological activities to keep conditions within range required to survive. (5-8)

The Monarch's Forest Ecosystem
Why Do Monarchs Shiver?
Why Are Those Butterflies Behaving So Strangely?
Temperature and Elevation: The Monarchs Are Nearly Two Miles High
Temperature and Survival: A Balancing Act
Monarchs are Cold-blooded Creatures: The Basics


 

Behavior is one kind of response an organism can make to an internal or environmental stimulus. A behavioral response requires coordination and communication at many levels, including cells, organ systems, and whole organisms. Behavioral response is determined in part by heredity and in part from experience. (5-8) Seasonal History of a Monarch Colony
The Cloud Effect
Mating Before Spring Departure
Monarchs are Cold-blooded Creatures: The Basics
An organism's behavior evolves through adaptation to its environment. How a species moves, obtains food, reproduces, and responds to danger are based in the species' evolutionary history. (5-8) Storm Kills Over 75% of Overwintering Monarchs
Mexico's Wet and Dry Seasons: Precipitation Graph
POPULATIONS AND ECOSYSTEMS
Populations of organisms can be categorized by the function they serve in an ecosystem. Plants and some microorganisms are producers?they make their own food. All animals, including humans, are consumers, which obtain food by eating other organisms. Decomposers, primarily bacteria and fungi, are consumers that use waste materials and dead organisms for food. Food webs identify the relationships among producers, consumers, and decomposers in an ecosystem. (5-8) Millions of Monarchs Eaten by Predators
The number of organisms an ecosystem can support depends on resources available and abiotic factors, such as quantity of light and water, range of temperatures, and soil composition. Given adequate biotic and abiotic resources and no disease or predators, populations increase at rapid rates. Lack of resources and other factors, such as predation and climate, limit the growth of populations in specific in certain niches. (5-8) Millions of Monarchs Eaten by Predators
DIVERSITY AND ADAPTATIONS
Biological evolution accounts for the diversity of species through gradual processes over many generations. Species acquire many of their unique characteristics through biological adaptation, which involves the selection of naturally occurring variations in populations. Biological adaptations include changes in structures, behaviors, or physiology that enhance survival and reproductive success in a particular environment. (5-8) The Monarch's Forest Ecosystem
Storm Kills Over 75% of Overwintering Monarchs
Millions of Monarchs Eaten by Predators
Camouflage in the Overwintering Colonies
Mating Before Spring Departure
Why Don't Cold Butterflies Fall?
Millions of Monarchs Eaten by Predators

D. EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE
PROPERTIES OF EARTH MATERIALS (K-4) (5-8)

Soils have properties of color and texture, capacity to retain water, and ability to support the growth of many kinds of plants, including those in our food supply. (K-4) Causes of Deforestation
CHANGES IN THE EARTH AND SKY
Weather changes from day to day and over the seasons. Weather can be described by measurable quantities, such as temperature, wind direction and speed, and precipitation. (K-4) The Monarch's Forest Ecosystem
Storm Kills Over 75% of Overwintering Monarchs
How is the Weather Today in the Overwintering Region?
How Cold Are the Overwintering Sites in Mexico?
Climate and Seasons: Annual Global Precipitation
Tropical vs. Temperate: Watch the Seasons Change
Objects in the sky have patterns of movement. The sun, for example, appears to move across the sky in the same way every day, but its path changes slowly over the seasons. The moon moves across the sky on a daily basis much like the sun. The observable shape of the moon changes from day to day in a cycle that lasts about a month. (K-4) Where Do Monarchs Get Water in the Winter?
STRUCTURE OF THE EARTH SYSTEM
Clouds, formed by the condensation of water vapor, affect weather and climate. (5-8) Climate and Seasons: Annual Global Precipitation
Global patterns of atmospheric movement influence local weather. Oceans have a major effect on climate, because water in oceans holds a large amount of heat. (5-8) Tropical vs. Temperate: Watch the Seasons Change
EARTH IN THE SOLAR SYSTEM
The sun is the major source of energy for phenomena on the earth's surface, such as growth of plants, winds, ocean currents, and the water cycle. Seasons result from variations in the amount of sun's energy hitting the surface, due to the tilt of the earth's rotation on its axis and the length of the day. (5-8) Reasons for Seasons (entire unit)

F. SCIENCE IN PERSONAL AND SOCIAL PERSPECTIVES

TYPES OF RESOURCES
Resources are things we get from living and nonliving environment to meet the needs and wants of a population. (K-4) Domestic Uses of Wood: A Ranch Tour with Noemi's Dad
Causes of Deforestation
Reforestation Solutions: Michoacan Reforestation Fund
Life in the Mexican Monarch Sanctuary Region
Measure Your Ecological Footprint
Water Resources for Sanctuary Region Families
Life in the Sanctuary Region
Some resources are basic materials, such as air, water, and soil; some are produced from basic resources, such as food, fuel, and building materials; and some resources are nonmaterial, such as quiet places, beauty, security, and safety. (K-4) Deforestation in the Sanctuaries: Domestic Uses of Wood
Causes of Deforestation
Reforestation Solutions: Michoacan Reforestation Fund
Life in the Mexican Monarch Sanctuary Region
Measure Your Ecological Footprint
The supply of many resources is limited. If used, resources can be extended through recycling and decreased use. (K-4) Deforestation in the Sanctuaries: Domestic Uses of Wood
Reforestation Solutions: Michoacan Reforestation Fund
Life in the Mexican Monarch Sanctuary Region

CHANGES IN ENVIRONMENTS

Environments are the spaces, conditions, and factors that affect an individual's and a population's ability to survive and their quality of life. (K-4) Habitat: A Quiet Walk in the Monarch's Forest
Can YOU Find the Monarch's Winter Home in Mexico?
More Photos, Maps, Landscape Views
Water Resources for Sanctuary Region Families
The Forest as Blanket, Umbrella, and Hot Water Bottle
How Are These Monarchs Avoiding Predators?
Monarch Habitat: Dr. Calvert Looks at Space from a Monarch's Point of View
Visiting the Monarch Sanctuary with Doctor Lincoln Brower
Field Notes From Mexico
Life in the Sanctuary Region
Scientists Learn From Butterflies: More Land is Needed
Changes in environments can be natural or influenced by humans. Some changes are good, some are bad, and some are neither. Pollution is a change in the environment that can influence the health, survival, or activities of organisms, including humans. (K-4) The Children's Monarch Reforestation Project
Deforestation Maps of Monarch's Forest
Causes of Deforestation
Monarchs in the News: Populations Rebound
The Effect of Cold, Wet Weather on Monarchs
Measure Your Ecological Footprint
Why Not Estimate the Number of Butterflies
Scientists Learn From Butterflies: More Land is Needed

Ecotourism Safari

 

 
POPULATIONS, RESOURCES, ENVIRONMENTS

Causes of environmental degradation and resource depletion vary from region to region and country to country. (5-8)

Monarch Conservation News From Mexico
About Conservation Perspectives
Measure Your Ecological Footprint
NATURAL HAZARDS
Human activities also can induce hazards through resource acquisition, urban growth, land-use decisions, and waste disposal. Such activities can accelerate many natural changes. (5-8) Causes of Deforestation
The Children's Monarch Reforestation Project

G. HISTORY AND NATURE OF SCIENCE
SCIENCE AS A HUMAN ENDEAVOR

Although men and women using scientific inquiry have learned much about the objects, events, and phenomena in nature, much more remains to be understood. Science will never be finished. (K-4) Storm Kills Over 75% of Overwintering Monarchs
Cascading Behavior
Many people choose science as a career and devote their entire lives to studying it. Many people derive great pleasure from doing science. (K-4) Monitoring the Sierra Chincua Sanctuary
Discovery Tale: Two Geographic Clues Led to Monarchs
Field Notes From Mexico
NATURE OF SCIENCE

Scientists formulate and test their explanations of nature using observation, experiments, and theoretical and mathematical models. Although all scientific ideas are tentative and subject to change, for most major ideas in science, there is much experimental and observational confirmation. Those ideas are not likely to change greatly. Scientists do and have changed their ideas about nature when they encounter new experimental evidence that does not match their existing explanations. (5-8)

Why Not Estimate the Number of Butterflies
It is part of scientific inquiry to evaluate the results of scientific investigations, experiments, observations, theoretical models, and the explanations proposed by other scientists. Evaluation includes reviewing experimental procedures, examining the evidence, identifying faulty reasoning, pointing out statements that go beyond the evidence, and suggesting alternative explanations for the same observations. Scientists agree that questioning, response to criticism, and open communication are integral to the process of science. As scientific knowledge evolves, major disagreements are eventually resolved through such interactions between scientists. (5-8) Citizen Science and Journey North
Why Not Estimate the Number of Butterflies 

Copyright 2003-2007 Journey North. All Rights Reserved.
Please send all questions, comments, and suggestions to
our feedback form