North Enrichment Pilot Project
Rama Central P.S., Washago, Ontario
|This project can be
used with any migratory species and any grade level of student!
Spare Time Enrichment
Six of the students in my 2006-2007 Grade 2 class consistently
completed their work ahead of their classmates, and became bored and
listless when they were not being challenged.
During the spring of 2007, I engaged these students in six-week
“spare time enrichment projects.”
Each student chose one of six migratory species being tracked by
the educational website Journey
He/she then used Journey North and other non-fiction resources
available through our school library to answer the journal questions in
the Journey North news reports and to complete a research project about his/her
Each student also gave regular oral presentations to our class
about migration progress.
of the favorite aspects of this project,
for these young students, was the research folders I created to house
their news reports and notes. These folders made the students feel like
“junior scientists” and helped them to keep all of their work
organized and in one place.
After the initial start-up, all I had to add to the folders were
the weekly or bi-weekly news reports.
I indicated on these hard copies,
with asterisks, the essential items I wanted my students to read and the
journal questions I wanted them to answer.
I provided templates from the Journey North web site, on which
students could write their responses.
By the mid-point in the project, I noticed that students
were not quite as independent as I had hoped at interpreting and
completing their weekly journal assignments. I believe this was function
of their young age.
I solved this problem by scheduling brief orientation meetings with
students once a week.
Older students would probably not need such guidance.
also noted that computer availability
was sometimes a problem. I compensated by printing extra journal question
resources from Journey North and having students sign out print resources from the library to
assist them in the completion of their research projects.
In June, I interviewed the students to see what they thought of the
six said the Journey North Enrichment Project was a good
Five of the six students said they would definitely like to
participate in a project like this again.
The sixth said he would consider doing so if he was offered the
chance to learn about another species.
In retrospect, I think a study partner might have been of benefit and
enjoyment to my enrichment students.
Next time I run this project, I will consider assigning more than
one student to each species.
In the future, I think I will also limit the number of species
involved in the project.
Printing weekly news reports for all six species that Journey North
tracks in the spring, plus additional information for each student study
folder, to enable students to do more of their study off-line, became rather labor-intensive for me.