Complete Science Lesson Plans from Noble Foundation

These are professionally-written, complete lessons that are keyed to objectives.  These lessons all have some sort of  tie-in to Agriculture and are generally for middle-school through high school levels.  There are currently about a dozen complete lessons, but check back often as they are being re-written and new ones will be added in the future.   http://noble.org/noble-academy/

Maps of Ecosystems

Very nice maps of North America by region or by states, in a variety of different levels of detail, are available from http://www.epa.gov/wed/pages/ecoregions.htm

If you ask nicely you can sometimes get a large classroom copy mailed to you.

 

One example of how to use this is to post them side-by-side with a geology map of the same area, or a precipitation map and have the students looks for similarities and patterns in the distribution of vegetation types and the surface geology.  They can also look for patterns in the distribution of vegetation types and the amount of precipitation, or of any other weather characteristic you might be able to generate maps of.  Shown is Oklahoma but these are available for most states and regions.

Project WILD

Project WILD – one of the most-used sets of environmental education curricula in the US. grades K-8 with some flexibility in the grade levels. You can’t buy the materials – it’s given to you when you attend in one-day (or more) workshop. You get the books while the actual materials are simple and cheap.

Don’s hint – get a plastic bin for each activity you will use and keep it pre-loaded with all of the things, be they paper towels, paper clips, whatever.  Add a few empty trash bags and a photocopy of the exercise and the teacher’s hints.  Then you can just grab and run.

A lot of learning about conservation, environmental and ecological principles can be taught through games and activities.  Project WILD and its companion, Project WET serve to provide the teacher with dozens of such activities that have been teacher-written, then teacher-tested, and revised so that they just simply work.  Most are keyed to objectives.  Read more at http://www.projectwild.org/

One more thing – here a free sample lesson.  It’s for young children, and it’s about how fish use their bodies when they swim.  http://www.projectwild.org/GrowingUpWILD.htm and click on the “Sample Activity”.

Vegetation Maps of Oklahoma

There are several maps of where in the state the vegetation types are, or historically were.  The classic study is the map of 15 different kinds of vegetation.  A smaller copy appears above, and a link to the image is below.  Remember – when it comes to images, link, don’t lift!   http://www.okatlas.org/okatlas/biotic/vegetation/duckfletcher.htm

A more simplified (12 vegetation types) but more clear map, in pdf format is at http://www.forestry.ok.gov/Websites/forestry/Images/Ecoregions.pdf

There are other maps on this blog – geology, etc.  Just search to see what you find that you can use in your classroom!