We spent part of our school day at Hogle Zoo learning about ANIMAL ADAPTATIONS! We even got to see and feel snow leopard fur and a few live animals.
Did you know that...
Predators eyes tend to be forward-facing to give them better depth perception?
Prey have eyes set more to the side to give them a wider range of vision (so they can avoid predators)?
Elephants can reach higher than giraffes so that they have the pick of the most tender top leaves?
Elephants use mud as sunscreen and bug repellent?
This is what science looks like!
During our Traits Class, we:
1. did a traits inventory of ourselves including whether or not we could roll our tongues or taste PTC paper
2. classified oak leaves according to their traits
3. observed differences in yarrow plants and hypothesized what could cause those differences
4. made observations about chipmunk adaptations and determined what environment each specimen was best adapted to
5. extracted DNA from pea plants
Our first science unit in 5th grade is GEOLOGY! We've learned about the rock cycle and the three types of rocks. More recently, we've studied Earth's changing surface. Continental drift/plate tectonics sure does make life on this planet interesting!
This week we worked in groups to describe and make salt dough models of some of Earth's interesting geological processes.
Oh, the weather outside was frightful, but the ZOO was so delightful!
We haven't had many snow days this winter, but we definitely got one today! At the zoo, we learned lots about various animal adaptations, observed many animals, and even had a chance to play in the snow ourselves!
All three 5th grade classes had the opportunity to attend a Traits Class at the Natural History Museum of Utah and the Symphony at Abravanel Hall. (Ms. Redmon's class did both on the same day.)
At the Natural History Museum, we:
We had a wonderful time hiking to Cecret Lake (although there were a few bumps in the road... literally and figuratively)! The students did geology, wrote descriptive paragraphs, and sketched a landscape. They also had fun exploring the surroundings.
Here is an awesome video made by Whit showing the salamanders he observed on our field trip:
We'll have more photos and student writing forthcoming!
"Cecret Lake" by Ella M.
I was amazed when I first saw the shallow stream. Insects glide across the surface of the water, probably searching for algae. Moss clings to the stream's floor, along with other plants. I suppose in the spring tadpoles inhabit the stream due to water rise. The water is cold and clear despite the muddy, murky, smooth floor of sediment. Stones adorn the bank, smooth and round from weathering. The water may seem mostly uninhabited, other than the water-gliding insects, but tiny worm-like creatures dwell on the stream floor, popping their heads out to ingest their food. Their slender, dark-orange bodies zip in and out through the holes. They are absolutely amazing! Why not visit the shallow stream? I hope you'll enjoy looking at it as much as I do!
"Cecret Lake" by Aditya C.
As I was walking up the trail, I finally reached my destination-- Cecret Lake! The sun was out and the lake was sparkling. My face said, "Hallelujah!" While I was sitting on a rock and eating peanut butter and jelly, I realized the beauty in nature. I liked how the water rippled, reminding me of the ocean. It sounded like a thousand kids yelling. It was perfect for eating delicious peanut butter and jelly although it smelled like old rocks and dirt with smelly kids on top. The rock I sat on felt rough like a toad, and the lake looked amazing. That was my fabulous trip to Cecret Lake.
"The Horrible Hike" by Ziletris O.
When I had to hike all the way to Cecret Lake, my leg started to hurt. Then, I took a break, got back up, and started to walk on the rocky ground. After that, I heard the sound of lovely birds, but I couldn't see them. When I found my rock, I smelled it, and it smelled like a flower. Finally, we were at the shiny lake, and it did seem like it's a secret to get to the beautiful Cecret Lake. It made up for my horrible hike.
Mrs. Sheffield helped the students make these neat silhouettes when they did their science unit on inherited traits. Parent volunteers set up a light and traced student outlines. The students themselves cut out the silhouettes carefully and mounted them. Students enjoyed guessing who was who.
Karen Redmon originally migrated to SLC from Memphis, TN. She has a Bachelor's in International Relations from BYU and a Master's in Teaching from Westminster. She's taught 4th, 1st, and 5th grades. Her interests include: camping, hiking, swimming, dancing, singing, pottery, sewing, theater, music, reading, and most of all-- learning.