Shot from the Southwest Florida Eagle Cam, 1/27/17.
Penguin research has become a staple for many first grade classrooms in our district. Why penguins?
“Kids love penguins. They’re cute.”
“It’s what we’ve always done. It works.”
“Our libraries have penguin books.”
You get the idea. Penguins are a high-interest topic through which young students can learn about the inquiry process. There’s nothing wrong with penguins.
But what if a more interactive research opportunity presents itself…
Check out the narrative and video snippets below to learn how Mrs. Vogel of Sand Creek Elementary took advantage of digital access to provide a connected research opportunity for her first graders! It all started when she discovered the Southwest Florida Eagle Cam
, a 24-hour live stream feed of Harriet, a mama eagle, and E-9, her newborn eaglet. Mrs. Vogel continues…
…[instead of penguins] I switched [our inquiry project] to eagles so we could use the web cam as a provocation. It’s going really well. We’ve learned the history of Harriet and her families; we watch the web cam everyday (all day), have started researching, and have Skyped with the Indianapolis Zoo to learn more about bald eagles. We have also started following several other eagle cams that are at different stages in their mating cycle. The students are working in groups (according to their interests) to answer some class questions and then they will decide how they want to share their learning.