Investigating a Desert Study Site
This guide is copied from Dick Barber's "Plants of the Desert" workshop activities.
[Take your students to a pristine desert area where there are soil lichen still in situ. This is not as difficult as it first seems. There are many places right in town even on small parcels of land. There are some schools that are very close to perfect sites. Usually you can find a suitable plot where ever there is old creosote growth. When you find the site figure out the best way to move people around it without disturbing the soil. This can be more difficult than finding a site. Here you can leave a nail to mark your plot. The plot should be revisited and photographed each year you visit it. Keep the area pristine desert.]
1)Guided Questions for Teacher Lead Discussion
2)Questions for group discussion
Guided Questions for Teacher Lead Discussion
Objective: Students will be able to list five areas of desert field research.
The teacher will introduce field research on a desert study site by leading students in a discussion. Students will state five areas of desert field research that interest them and state five rules of behavior appropriate.
1. Is there any desert near your house?
What does this desert look like?
Is it "natural desert"
How large is the area? Have you seen any interesting plants or animals there?
2. What are some attributes of the desert in Tucson?
What is the name of the desert we live in?
What are the temperatures of our desert?
How much rain do we get in our desert?
Does our desert change with elevation?
Are there different kinds of desert soils?
3. Are desert sites in an urban setting different from those "out in the desert?"
How are they different?
Are the same desert plants in the city as out in the desert?
Are there some plants that do better in the city? Out in the desert?
Is the soil composition, soil moisture, etc. different in the city?
4. If we set out to learn about a desert site, what are some things we could want to know?
What would we want to know about the plants?
What would we want to know about the animals?
What would we want to know about a particular desert study site?
What comparisons could be made with other desert sites?
Please refer to AK-1 for answers to the questions above.
Questions for group discussion
Five Things a Scientist Would Do To Study The Desert Name:
Directions: In the spaces below list FIVE THINGS you would think a scientist would do when planing to study a desert research site. Pretend that you are that scientist and state some of the things you might want to do.
Five Rules to Follow When Doing A Outdoor Study Name:
Directions: In the spaces below list FIVE RULES that will help make the study of our outdoor site safe and enjoyable for all.