Observing live organisms can be a highlight of students’ time in outdoor
science programs. Indoor Field Observations is designed to follow an outdoor
science experience by giving students time to practice observation skills they learned and get a closer look at organisms they may have only seen briefly in the outdoors. In Indoor Field Observations, students reflect on the skills they gained during an outdoor science experience and then make observations, ask questions, make connections, and construct explanations as they watch a nature video with the narration turned off. Next, students record their observations and thinking in journals, discuss their observations and ideas as a class, and make connections to science ideas (such as structure and function). Finally, students reflect on the learning experience. This simple activity can build on the excitement for learning about nature that students developed during an outdoor science experience. This activity should be completed after students have had an outdoor science experience in which they participated in the BEETLES Activity I Notice, I Wonder, It Reminds Me Of.
- Reflect on the skills they developed for exploring and learning about the natural world.
- Apply those skills by observing a nature video (with the sound off) and discussing observations and explanations with peers.
- Discuss observations and explanations as a class and make connections to other science ideas.