Creating A Plant Identification
will learn to recognize and name important desert plants by making a
Plant Identification Notebook which they will take on every trip
to the study site. This notebook will be an essential tool in helping
students identify plants they collect and will also assist the teacher
by keeping repeated requests for identification in check - ("Please
refer to your identification notebook.") The notebook is simply a spiral
notebook with a roll of tape attached to it with a string. On each trip
out of the classroom the teacher can introduce the students to a new
plant by having students tape a small piece of the plant in their identification
notebook. The plant's name is written next to it, as is the date, a
brief description of the plant and details of the collection site. A
rough sketch is given below:
IMPORTANT NOTE: During this first trip out of
the classroom the teacher should keep the students together while pointing
out and naming important plants for their identification notebook. This
is also THE TIME to set standards of acceptable field research behavior.
A Constructivist discussion based on the rules developed in Activity
#1a will be a good idea before going outside. This will help
students "buy into" some rules. Suggestions should include the following:
- Stay together. Do not wonder off.
- Respect all living things (lizards, snakes, plants,
etc., are not to be hurt).
- Plants are not to be unnecessarily damaged when specimens
- Do not throw rocks.
- No clowning around.
- No pushing, shoving, etc.
- Wear the proper clothing for being outside.
- Be helpful to everyone.