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List of "In the Spotlight" Features
Students from the Math/Science Center Study Signals in the Field
Ms. Kappus's students at the Mathematics and Science Center in Richmond, VA are not typical Signals of Spring students. This Spring, while many other middle school students were still sleeping, 7th and 8th graders in the Discoverquest Saturday Program spent ten Saturday mornings studying Bald Eagle and Sandhill Crane migrations.
Discoverquest students studied geography, weather, seasonal change, plankton, and wetlands both online and in the field. While learning about satellites as they explained bird movements, the students used GPS units to track their own. Guest lecturers visited to help students study weather and satellite imagery. To study bird habitats and seasonal change, students took two trips to local wetland areas, (see photo) a migration site of a local species, the blue heron. By visiting the same site in both February and April, students made seasonal comparisons of vegetation, weather, and food chains in winter and spring, just as we investigate through Signals of Spring research and analysis. Students also saw first-hand the various environmental effects of the drought that the East Coast has been experiencing this spring.
The Saturday learners concluded their program on May 11th with a festival to celebrate International Migratory Bird Day. Students presented the findings of their excellent Signals of Spring research and analyses to their teachers and parents, and to the Mathematics and Science Center directors.