Mammoth Cave Mobile
- Grade Level:
- Kindergarten-Third Grade
- Art, Environment, Visual Arts
- 30-40 minutes
- Group Size:
- Up to 24
- art, visual arts, National Parks
OverviewThis lesson plan is a part of "Making Connections: A Curriculum Guide to Mammoth Cave National Park, GrK-3", produced by the park's Environmental Education program. The GrK-3 Guide comprises ten lessons; this is lesson 2 of the set.
Students will discover the components that make up a National Park.
Objective(s)The students will be able to:
- Identify the components of a national park and relate them to Mammoth Cave National Park
- Match pictures with their appropriate titles
BackgroundNational parks are established to protect the resources found within their boundaries. These resources include plants, animals, rocks and the land, and people. People include visitors and the people that are important in the parks’ history. Each park has significant resources that have helped to establish it as a national park.
Mammoth Cave is important because of its diversity of life on the surface and underground. Some of the plants in the park include trees like oaks, hickories, tulip poplars, and sycamores. A few shrubs commonly found in the park are papaws and the spice bush. Several common wild flowers include thistle, bluets, jack-in-the-pulpit, and bloodroot. The animal population is also very diverse. It includes animals such as bats, squirrels, deer, raccoons, opossums, chipmunks and many birds including wild turkeys. The main rocks found in the park are limestone, sandstone, shale, and gypsum. Some of the people at Mammoth Cave include rangers, visitors, explorers, guides, miners, and prehistoric Indians. These are just a few examples of the many resources in the park that help to make it unique. The most important link that ties them all together would be water, like the Green River on the surface and the groundwater at work in the cave. For more examples or information on these resources, feel free to contact the Environmental Education Coordinator at the park.
MaterialsEach student will need:
- 2 drinking straws (or sticks)
- 6 twelve inch pieces of string
- A piece of tape
- A Mammoth Cave Mobile Sheet *
- Hole punch
- 1 national park symbol square *
The teacher asks the students to recall what makes national parks important. The teacher writes the categories plants, animals, rocks, and people on the blackboard.
The teacher asks the students to think of a few animals that might be found in Mammoth Cave National Park. The teacher writes their answers under the category. Then does the same thing for each of the categories. The teacher may need to tell the students answers for some of the categories. (It is best to use the answers from the mobile sheet as examples.)
The teacher passes out the mobile sheets to the students. They read the directions together. The students need to fill in the blanks on their sheet.
The teacher passes out the other supplies that are needed for the project. The students can color their squares and begin to assemble their mobiles. The two straws are crossed in the center and taped together. Glue or tape two pictures from the same category back-to-back. On each end of a straw the students hang a category square that has been colored. Punch a hole in each card so the string can be tied through it (or the string can be taped on). Hang the national park symbol square from the center of the crossed straws.
The final step is to hang the mobile in your classroom to decorate the room.
CLOSURE: Today we talked about some of the things that make Mammoth Cave an important national park. As we continue to study Mammoth Cave National Park we will learn more and more about what makes it very special.
AssessmentThe teacher is able to evaluate the students by seeing how they label the parts of their mobile.
All national parks preserve and protect the resources that make it special. This may include the plants, animals, rocks, landscape, people and history associated with the special place.
- Instead of using our mobile sheet, have the students draw pictures of a plant, animal, rock, and people that make Mammoth Cave National Park a special place.
- Make one large classroom mobile with students drawings of the many different resources found in Mammoth Cave National Park. The class could have more than one of each item under the different categories.
- Make a class field guide that has pictures/drawings and names of the plants, animals, rocks and people that might be found in Mammoth Cave National Park. The students could pick just one or they could do all four. They could be put together in a book to be used during a visit to the park.