During this period, students in Kindergarten went on a virtual field trip to the Lindsay Wildlife Museum. Over a span of three weeks, the students joined the Lindsay Wildlife Experience for a live virtual program featuring their animal ambassadors! Lindsay offered innovative school programs designed with distance learning models in mind. Each program included three 30 minute classes, and each class featured a different animal ambassador as well as natural history specimens. These programs follow topics designed to support California Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS).
Over the course of the three programs, the students investigated what makes mammals, birds, and reptiles special and what they need to survive! Students met different animal ambassadors each week, discovering what kind of animals they were, and what characteristics all members of that animal classification share.
During the first session, children learned about mammals and their characteristics: they have fur or hair, they have back bones, they are warm blooded and the females feed their babies milk. They met guinea pigs, taxidermied bears, and even a porcupine!
In the second session, children learned about birds and their characteristics. They have feathers, they have wings, they have beaks or bills, and they lay eggs. They met homing pigeons, morning doves, and owls!
For the third session, children learned about reptiles. Their bodies are completely covered with scales, they have backbones, are cold-blooded and their babies are born in shelled eggs. They met snakes, tortoises and lizards!
Although the program was in English, French teachers explored all the necessary vocabulary in French and continued the theme of each program in their classrooms through language activities, gross and fine motor activities, and math and science activities.
The children loved the opportunity to explore the animal kingdom and share what they already knew about animals, while learning new and exciting facts. They were led through the experience by museum staff and volunteer docents who were able to engage the students and make the learning fun. Lindsay Wildlife put a lot of time and effort into moving their program online, and the students and teachers enjoyed every minute of the experience!