Activities: Levels of Difficulty   

1.   If you are a teacher, you can have your students do the investigation as a class project.  If you choose to just do some of the activities, please include the map activity so that we may post your area on the web.  Contact us before you begin if you would like to get some advice from us.

2. If you are a parent with a child doing the investigation on his or her own, please supervise your child, for safety reasons as well as a way of promoting their enthusiasm.

3.   In choosing an area to investigate, any natural area near the house or school will suffice.  The school or house lawn itself is good if there is still some of the original ground and plant material left.  There are also many city, county, state, or national parks which still have areas in the original natural state.

     The following tables show the two levels of activities, and whether the activity is carried out in the field, in the lab (or classroom or home), or both.  Choose all of some of them, but try to do the first seven activities in the table of contents and the final map as a minimum if at all possible.

Level 1 - Contains the simplest and most general activities. It involves basic characteristics of the biotic community you are investigating.  Simple measuring calculations are involved.  The activity marked *  has the use of chemicals as an option.

Level 2 - Involves identifying and naming the actual species of plants and animals and require the use of multiplication and division to determine the ecological characteristics being investigated.  Our students can carry out the calculations if you supply us with your data.  The activity marked * requires the use of chemicals.

 Activity    Field  Classroom
Measuring Distances        x  
Preparing a Map 1        x  
Native or Exotic        x         x
*Rock Formations        x         x
Measuring Tree Height        x         x

 Activity    Field  Classroom
Plant Survey         x  
Animal Survey         x  
Naming Your Community           x
Diversity         x  
Preparing a Map 2         x         x
*pH of the Soil         x         x

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