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Learning Expeditions

BIOBLITZ

Bioblitz, a compound word of bio (meaning life) and blitz (defined as something done quickly), is an organized hike to discover the life forms found in an area. The living things observed become a record of the biodiversity found in the area studied. With the guidance of an experienced leader, students will conduct a scientific exploration of the life forms found at Twin Oaks. Mammals, birds, plants, invertebrates are subjects of the Bioblitz.

  • Grade/Subject: 6th-8th Grade Science
  • MN Science Topic: Systems; Populations and Communities
  • MN Science Standards: 6.1.3.1.1; 7.4.2.1.1


FIBONACCI IN NATURE

Fibonacci numbers are found many places in nature including flower petals, pine cone spirals, and trees. The Fibonacci Spiral can also be found in things like shells and the human face. Students will be given the opportunity to explore Fibonacci Numbers and Spirals throughout Twin Oaks in this learning expedition.

  • Grade/Subject: Middle School Math


ECOSYSTEMS: SYSTEMS IN COMMUNITIES

This program introduces and extends student understanding of two local ecosystems: the deciduous forest and a permanent wetland. Students experience real examples of life in a deciduous forest and permanent wetland. They will examine the relationships of life found in a forest and a wetland and consider the biotic and abiotic factors effecting life in each ecosystem, by thinking about predator/prey; parasite/host and identifying producers, consumers and decomposers in each location.

  • Grade/Subject: 7 Grade – Life Science
  • MN Science Topic: Interdependence Among Living Systems
  • MN Science Standards: 7.4.2.1.1; 7.4.2.1.2; 7.4.2.1.3; 8.1.3.4.2


NATURE JOURNALING

The Nature Journal program introduces and reinforces the value of observation, critical thinking, reflection, and journaling about nature. This program provides authentic nature experiences to motivate even reluctant writers. Experience in nature provides relevant experiences for writing both narratives as well as writing routinely for extended periods. This program will encourage students to begin personal journaling experiences about their excursions outside.

  • Grade/Subject: 6th-8th Grade Science/Language Arts
  • MN Language Arts Topic: Writing
  • MN Language Arts Standards: Gr. 6: 6.7.3.5 & 6.7.10.10 Gr. 7: 7.7.3.3 & 7.7.10.10 Gr. 8: 8.7.3.3 & 8.7.10.10

WATER STUDY

Water has the same cycle no matter where you find it. Even though each water source comes from the same cycle, each "body" of water has a different make-up and health. The health of water can be found by measuring temperature, dissolved oxygen levels, acidity, turbidity and other components. Students will, in essence, be water doctors and examine the health of three water sources; examining its properties, diagnosing the condition of it and determining any possible factors contributing to the overall health of the water.

  • Grade/Subject: 7th & 8th Grade
  • MN Science Topic: The Practice & Nature of Science
  • MN Science Standards: 7.1.1.1.2; 7.1.1.2.1; 7.1.1.2.3; 8.1.3.4.2


WEATHER STUDY

Weather changes and patterns are fascinating. This expedition will provide students the opportunity for hands on experiences with real weather instruments, using them to gather data and discover the current season-based climate in two areas of Twin Oaks.

  • Grade/Subject: 8th Grade – Earth Science, Physical Science
  • MN Science Topic: Meteorology
  • MN Science Standards: 8.1.3.4.2; 8.3.2.1.3; 8.3.2.2.2


GEOLOGY

Rocks and soil are everywhere and so common that we hardly take time to notice them. This expedition will allow students to look for weathering and erosion, noticing how it changes the landscape. They will also classify rocks by type and learn how to test them for hardness.

  • Grade/Subject: Grades 6-8; Earth Science
  • MN Science Topic: Earth Structure and Processes
  • MN Science Standards: 8.3.1.2.2 ; 8.3.1.3.1. ; 8.3.1.3.2 ; 8.3.1.3.3 

Discovery Hike

The Discovery Hike is a 15 minute introduction to the Outdoor Adventure Education learning process (wonder, explore, discover, and learn) as well an overview of the expectations/code of conduct for learning in a natural environment like Twin Oaks.

  •  Grades/Subjects: All