Kindergarten students in Danielle Wlodarczak’s class at Challenge Elementary became animal researchers during a recent project. Working with their teacher and Kate Rossetter, Howell Public Schools instructional coach, the students used Project Based Learning to complete the project that incorporated the students reading, writing, research and art skills into one fun project.
The project began with the students learning about author and researcher Jeanette Winter. After learning what a researcher does, the students were ready to become researchers themselves, and they dove into the project. The students visited the Potter Park Zoo website to explore what animals live at the zoo. Each student then selected an animal and used informational texts and websites to become experts on their animal. Using their research, the students wrote and illustrated a page for a Potters Park Zoo book which the students presented to the zookeepers at the zoo.
“It amazing how engaged the students were with this project,” said Wlodarczak. “The students still talk about their animal! We are talking about animals in science, and they all want to share facts about the animal they researched.”
After presenting their book to the zookeepers, the students spent the day exploring the Potter Park Zoo. They enjoyed seeing the animals that they researched up close and sharing the facts they had learned with others.