Earth Science Field Trip
Summary: Students will either hike the Avalanche Lake Trail or combine a short hike along Lake McDonald with ranger-led activities in the Apgar Area. In both cases the ranger-led activities will highlight landform building, glaciation, rocks and minerals, erosion and soil formation.
How to Dress for the Avalanche Field Trip (Sample permission slip from J. Summerscales, Columbia Falls Jr. High)
Objectives: (These are examples of some of the objectives that can be achieved on an earth science program. Many others are possible depending on the teacher’s focus and the ranger.).
Students will be able to:
Montana Content and Performance Standards:
10.54.5010 Science Standard 1= “…design, conduct, evaluate, and communicate scientific investigations.”
10.54.5030 Science Standard 3= “…demonstrate knowledge of characteristics, structures and function of living things, the process and diversity of life, and how living organisms interact with each other and their environment.”
10.54.5040 Science Standard 4= “…demonstrate knowledge of the composition, structures, processes, and interactions of earth’s systems and other objects in space.”
Making Connections to Glacier National Park:
One of the reasons Glacier National Park was established was to preserve the unique geology of this region.
Field Trip Logistics:
Teachers wishing to have their students participate in the earth sciences field trip should plan to arrive in the park by 9:30 a.m. and stay until 2 p.m. Allowing adequate time (5 hours) inside the park will result in a less-rushed, more enjoyable experience. Everyone in the group must be prepared to be outside all day and ready to hike a trail that gains 500 ft of elevation over 2 miles (one way, for a total of 4 miles round-trip).
Example for a bus of 60 students, divided into 2 groups of 30 students each:
Each group will be assigned a ranger for the day and both groups will cover the same activities but at slightly different times or places along the trail.
Did You Know?
If current trends continue, some scientists predict that by the year 2030, Glacier National Park will not contain any glaciers and many of the park's smaller glaciers will melt even sooner.