For our final trip this summer for B.E.E.S. we went to Assateague Island National Seashore. For many of our campers it was their first time seeing the Atlantic Ocean. We first stopped at the Visitor's Center where we learned about the unique wildlife on the island including the history of the wild horses found there. Next we stopped on the Chincoteague Bay side of the island. We at lunch, explored the shallow water and the various shells on the beach. We saw our first horse here, as well! Lastly we stopped on the ocean side of the island. We found a variety of crabs and enjoyed the ocean waves. We also learned how this barrier island "flips over" on itself through erosion caused by wind and waves. Hopefully students can draw upon this experience in science for this upcoming year! We walked an estimated .5 miles on Assateague Island bringing our total to 14.3 miles for the entire 8 days! For more pictures go to the bottom of the page here.
We had a great finish to our field trips this year with one last journey with the Snow Goose of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation. We found a variety of wildlife, perhaps the best I have seen it in the seven years I have gone on tours with the Snow Goose. Between map work, testing for turbidity, salinity, water temperature, dissolved oxygen and always on the lookout for wildlife...I would say we had quite a busy day!
A big thank you to David Richards for another fantastic tour of Gettysburg! I learn something new each and every time we go there. Mrs. Gutting took some detailed notes to have an even more comprehensive tour next year! The students learned about Pickett's Charge, Devil's Den and of course Little Round Top and how those events and places within the battle turned the course of history for the United States. But we didn't just learn about history. We were able to study landforms, rock formations and we were even able to see the dinosaur Raptor footprints in two rocks! Enjoy the beautiful pictures taken by our very own Ms. Costas. They are amazing!
We had an exciting kickoff to our Civil War theme this week. After visiting the "Pratt St. Riots" on Monday we turned our attention to Antietam. All of our field trips are done in chronological order. Antietam took place a few months after the Pratt St Riots in September of 1862. Stops at The Cornfield, Bloody Lane, Dunker Church and Burnside Bridge were the highlights of our tour. Students conducted research on not only the battle itself but also observed Science "in action" all around us. Ecosystems, soil conservation, physical and chemical weathering and the water cycle are just some examples. Ask you children about the different rocks they saw in Antietam and Gettysburg, as well! A huge thank you to Mr. Phil McLaughlin for another fantastic tour of Antietam!
Whether it be first hand on trips aboard the "Snow Goose" or from a laptop at our desk, students have been conducting research on the health of the Chesapeake Bay all year. We have been graphing the turbidity, salinity, and dissolved oxygen levels specifically. We started with just the Patapsco but have now expanded our research to Annapolis and Jamestown. This link will provide with you with more information on just how we do it! A big thanks to NOAA for allowing us access to their buoys!
On Friday students prepared for the Harris Creek project. Students walked over the top of the now underground creek and found evidence that there was a creek below them. (saturated ground, cracks in sidewalk, depressions in the earth). Next students created their own examples of what they think the stenciling finished product should look like and present them to the entire 5th grade. Today we will vote on our top 3 and begin painting!
Amazingly the Bay received an even better grade today than yesterday! The results of our research are below. Two days in a row we saw a bald eagle!
Today students learned about the importance of wetlands in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed we live in. Ask your children about the activity they worked on with Ms. Kramer and why wetlands are so important to the health of the Chesapeake Bay! To learn more about Maryland's water ecosystems read pp. 122-123 in their Science book with them tonight. We have personally already visited many of the ecosystems mentioned in the book! (Assateague Island, Chesapeake Bay)
Today we had a very exciting science lab! Students learned about owls and how they eat their prey. Then each student got their own owl pellet to dissect. Students worked hard to dissect their pellet using their fingers, tweezers, and probes. Students categorized and sorted the bones they found and used a bone ID chart to identify what animal their owl ate! Ask your child what kind of skull was inside their owl pellet!
What a fantastic day out on the Patapsco River! It is hard to name all the activites the students took part in! They tested the water's turbidity, salinity, and oxygen levels and recorded their findings. The observed and recorded the various wildlife we saw AND touched. They also just enjoyed a beautiful day out on the water. Ask you children what they learned today aboard the Snow Goose! We will be going back out on the Snow Goose in the Spring to compare and contrast the water quality and wildlife from today. We will continue to monitor the health of the Patapsco and the rest of the Chesapeake Bay on NOAA's website. In addition to all of our Science lessons today we also continued our research for the Star Spangled Banner National Historic Trail by observing the various parts of the Battle of Baltimore from the boat. Note the Francis Scott Key buoy below!
This page is dedicated to the work and research my students do each day.