A Peek Inside the Nature’s Nurseries Traveling Trunk

November 05, 2018 Posted by: McKenna Pace
Created by first-graders at High Tech Elementary North County, the Nature’s Nurseries Traveling Trunk was designed to highlight the life cycles of four different animals found at Cabrillo National Monument – the Gray Whale, Garibaldi, Peregrine Falcon, and White-Lined Sphinx Moth. Specifically designed for students in grades K-2 based on Next Generation Science Standards, the books and activities in this trunk will help students understand what life cycles are, why these animals matter, and what students can do to help protect them. These trunks are available for teachers to use for up to two weeks at a time and are free of cost. Check out what’s inside!

an overview of some of the materials found inside the Nature’s Nurseries Traveling Trunk
NPS Photo/McKenna Pace: an overview of some of the materials found inside the Nature’s Nurseries Traveling Trunk.
  1. Books: There are a total of 12 picture books found within the trunk, some of which were even written by High Tech Elementary students! These books introduce the concept of life cycles, how they differ throughout the Animal Kingdom, and highlight life histories such as the Gray Whale migration and Peregrine Falcon nesting.
  2. Teacher Binder: The trunk comes complete with a Teacher Resources Binder full of background information, lesson plans, and additional worksheets classes might need.
  3. Garibaldi Activity: Learn all about the Garibaldi’s life cycle as the fish travels from the Kelp Forest to the Tidepools and back again. This activity is a set of nursery rhymes along with wooden pieces students can use to “act out” what’s happening in the song.
  4. Gray Whale Activity: Learn about the Gray Whale life cycle through a set of fun, interactive puzzles! Students will learn that whales are mammals, just like us, that undergo one of the longest migrations known on Earth. This activity is paired with a math worksheet to help students understand concepts such as how long the migration is, how much milk Gray Whale calves can drink, and how much adult Gray Whales can eat.
  5. Animal Models: Not only do these models help students understand the animals they are learning about, but they also allow students to create Nature Journals from the comfort of their own classroom. The models included in this trunk are an adult and calf Gray Whale, adult and juvenile Garibaldi, a Peregrine Falcon stuffed animal, a Peregrine hand puppet, a Peregrine talon replica, and a Peregrine egg replica.
  6. Sphinx Moth and Peregrine Falcon Board Games: High Tech first-graders wrote and illustrated picture books to explain the life cycles of the White-Lined Sphinx Moth and Peregrine Falcon (which are also available for purchase on amazon.com). Students use the information in the books to answer trivia questions – get one right, move ahead on the game board; get one wrong, move back. The first player to get to the stop sign wins!

Note that this is not a comprehensive list of everything inside the trunk, but an overview. To read the lesson plans for each activity, preview the worksheets, or reserve the trunk, visit http://cabrilloeducation.com/traveling-trunks. Make your reservation today!

*A special thank-you to Shelley Glenn Lee and all of the High Tech Elementary North County first grade teachers for your hard work in organizing and putting together this trunk! We hope that this will be a fun and engaging resource for teachers for years to come.


Nature’s Nurseries, Traveling Trunk, Education, Gray Whale, Peregrine falcon, White-Lined Sphinx Moth, Garibaldi

Last updated: November 5, 2018

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