Teachers have a special opportunity to expand awareness of endangered species conservation.
Note: Since the Covid-19 crisis has resulted in the closure of many (most) schools, you can adapt these activities for online instruction or whatever other teaching methods you are currently using. Most of the class discussions can be arranged by using Skype, Facetime or a similar application.
Classroom/Outdoor Activities For School & Home School Teachers
*Add an endangered species conservation component to your curriculum. See below for some suggestions.
*Discuss how a lack of biodiversity/habitat destruction could foster conditions for new viruses.
*Have students read an article or book about an endangered species and discuss why it is endangered and suggest ideas for how to help protect the species.
* Schedule a guest speaker from a conservation organization to talk about local endangered species, including why they are endangered, what is being done to help, and how our everyday actions make a difference. (See Resources page for Podcast links, which could be an at-home option.)
*Ask students to write a report about their favorite threatened or endangered species and then present to the class.
*Have students create a plan for how they can make their home more “wildlife friendly.”
*Hold a class discussion about the overuse of plastics and ask students for their ideas to help reduce the use of such items as straws and cups. Also, about how to help clean up the plastic waste that already exists.
*Discuss current events about local threatened and endangered species.
*Ask a few other teachers to help you organize a school-wide Endangered Species Day fair with exhibits (when school is back in session after the C-19 crisis.)
*Create an online image gallery that students can access; to include their endangered species artwork, along with other illustrations and photos.
*Hold a Save Our Species poster/display contest.
*Have students write letters to your local government representative asking them to support legislation to help protect threatened/endangered species.
* Create displays about endangered species in the school library; including photos, artwork, books and other material.
*Let the class decide on a specific endangered species to “adopt.”
*Study the species and their habitats in your region that are especially vulnerable.
When time and school regulations permit, here are some excursions/other outdoor activities:
*Go on a nature walk and discuss how animals, including endangered species, rely on a healthy environment to survive.
*Take your class to help with a habitat restoration project. (Work with your local conservation department or an environmental group.)
*Organize a fundraiser and donate money to conservation organizations that help endangered species.
*Plant a pollinator garden on school grounds or a nearby site.
*Arrange a class trip to a local conservation center, zoo or aquarium, or nearby park/forest area to learn about local endangered species and the importance of preserving our critical habitats.
**Please share your additional ways to teach about endangered species.
Teaching Aids/Lesson Plans
Following are a few lesson plans/instructional guides: