Monday, May 19, 2014

I. B. Tigrett Middle School Students Discover Birds

Earlier this year, Marsha Parsons, science teacher and Project Learning Tree facilitator, requested 200 Discover Birds Activity Books for sixth grade science students at Tigrett Middle School, in Jackson, TN. This spring, she received those books courtesy of the Tennessee Ornithological Society.
Since receiving the books students in Mrs Parsons, Mr. Shackelford and Mr. Pledger's classes have been going on daily bird walks on the school grounds to study the ecosystem in which the birds in their area live .
Tigrett Middle School is located in an urban area with an open grass yard and bordering trees.  Though it is often hard to identify birds at a distance, noticing the bird's relative size, color, if possible, the way it flies and its general behavior can often help in identifying the bird.
Common birds found in urban areas include:  Mourning Dove, Rock Pigeon (feral pigeon), Northern Mockingbird, European Starling, House Sparrow, Common Crow and American Robin.  Pictures and information about the life and behavior of these birds can be found at Cornell's All About Birds by entering the bird's name in the search space.
While on their bird walks, students study the habitat and have even discovered bird nests. They are using the bird adaptation section of the Discover Birds Activity Book to aid their discussion about the kinds of adaptations birds need for this urban environment.  

A special thank you to Mrs Parsons, Mr Shackelford and Mr. Perkins for sharing their class activities and sending the above images of their students discovering birds!

Links and Resources:

Discover Birds Activity Book
Discover Birds Curriculum Guide
Tennessee Ornithological Society
Tennessee Birds
Tennessee Watchable Wildlife--Birds
Cornell's free beginning birding app--Merlin Bird ID by Cornell Lab of Ornithology
Audubon Mobile Field Guides

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