This lesson helps you become a citizen scientist, ultimately collecting important data. Your teacher has selected a study site for your school and you will be a part of the action. You and your classmates will study how TEAM scientists describe their study sites and then use those categories to describe yours. This description and the data you collect can go up on your school website for all to see.
Using the Internet, go to the TEAM Network website, www.teamnetwork.org. Click on the Network sites and read some of the site descriptions starting with BCI and ending with Yasuni. Next, write a description of your school site or an alternative site chosen for your TEAM monitoring research. Use the following format for your descriptions.
Name of Site
Introduction (include general or special details about your site.)
Describe the topography and ecosystem type.
State if the site is urban, suburban, rural, developed, undeveloped, etc.
Estimate the size of the site.
State if the site has buildings on it, if so, how many.
Describe any water on the site (rivers, streams, ponds, etc.).
Record if people irrigate the site. If so, how much is irrigated?
Note: Contact a local scientist if you need help with any of these descriptions.
State the following in a list format:
Information about the soil
Any pertinent geologic information
Species lists of known wild animals
Species lists of endemic or important plants
How often are humans on the site?
Are motor vehicles permitted on the site?
If motor vehicles are present, which ones are common?
Is the site connected to a wildlife corridor? If so, describe this.
Is the site on a bird migration route? If so, write details about this route.
State the following about the site in list format:
Country, State, County, and specific name of site
Include photographs of your study site and a map (hand drawn or Google Map).
Post this information in your science notebooks, on your school website or send it to the TEAM Network. Now, enjoy your scientific monitoring of your little piece of planet Earth (Next lesson: "Paint a Picture of Your Ecosystem: Protocols for establishing a school study site").