Lesson Plan

Swift Fox Inquiry & Presentations

Swift fox, National Park Service photograph
Swift fox
National Park Service photograph


In this lesson, students create a presentation about swift fox and Badlands National Park. Students will choose from a list of predetermined topics. Students use prompt questions related to their topic to research and present the required information to fellow students.


Students will practice skills in biological research by investigating the answers to prompt questions related to the swift fox topic to be presented. Students working in pairs or groups will practice collaborative thinking in order to present a single presentation as a group. Each student will become an expert on their topic and be responsible for teaching what they have learned to fellow class- mates through the presentation. Students who observe each presentation are responsible for the content by answering follow-along questions.


Teacher Background Information, Student Group Presentation Topics Sheets, Student Group Presentation Follow-Along Question Sheets.


As an instructor, decide whether students will be doing this assignment individually or in small groups, depending on class size. Use the sheet titled Group Presentation Topics when assigning presentation topics. The group or individual needs to find the information listed under the topic heading and cover that information in their presentation. The remainder of the students listening to the presentation need to find the answers to the questions listed on the Group Presentation Follow-Along Question Sheet. Students remain engaged and accountable through the audience requirement to answer questions pertaining to the presentations. Ideally, a class period for research and a class period for presentations should be sufficient time. This, of course, depends on class length and if additional in-class time is required for research.


  • Students can informally assess other presentations dependent upon whether or not they are able to answer the follow-along questions from the content delivered. If students are finding it difficult to answer the questions, required information may be missing from the presentation.
  • If a formal document is desired, adjust the Group Presentation Topics Sheet and use it as a check- off list for completion of required information.
  • Students can also be given an individual grade based on their participation in collaborative group work. This may dissuade students from allowing others to carry the load.


There are many other National Parks that have translocated or reintroduced species. You can use the same questioning and topic technique to inquire about other species in similar situations throughout the National Park Service.

Depending on the ability to work with other classrooms or grade levels, students may be able to share their presentations with other students. The class could collectively put together one cohesive presentation and teach other students (possibly younger students) about the Swift Fox and Badlands National Park. If you are within close proximity to the park, you could visit as a class or become guides for lower grade levels.

Additional Resources


Endangered Species Act, endangered, listed, threatened, extinct, extirpated, reintroduction, translocation