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Friday, January 30, 2015

Fresh Snow!

Although the storm on Monday didn't quite give us the snow amounts we were expecting, it did at least give us a couple inches of fresh snow to explore. As we hiked the property we found lots of different tracks. Each time we came across a set of tracks, the class would stop to determine the animal and the direction of travel. Can you guess who made the tracks below?
The snow was obviously great for play as well! We made snow angels, threw a couple snow balls, and enjoyed the ultimate winter pastime- sledding.
Once we returned to the toasty warmth of the classroom, we continued our lesson on mammals. Last week we learned that bats are mammals and we read "Stellaluna" by Janell Cannon. To continue are study of bats we discussed how they are the only mammal that can truly fly. We examined a taxidermy specimen of a Little Brown Bat and got an up close and personal look at a bat skull. It was so tiny! We could see it's perfect little teeth made for eating insects, like mosquitoes. 
Bats use echolocation to help them navigate and find insects at night. To help them to understand the concept a little better we played a game called "Bat & Moth". In this game there is one student that is the bat, another that is a moth, and the rest are trees. Once the bat is blindfolded, to simulate the darkness of night, the bat calls out "bat!" and the moth returns by saying "moth". The bat catches the moth by listening for the location of the sound and tagging the moth. The class had so much fun playing the game! 
Here we are touching a coyote fur and meeting Willow the Rat!
Next week we will wrap up our lesson on mammals and introduce our next Vertebrate group.

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