Speaking of today's digital natives...
My classroom of digital natives has been playing Wildlife Tycoon, a game like the ones described above, for three days now and I can't imagine a better way of teaching them about ecosystems. Like the students in the article, my students have said that the game has made class more interesting. Many have described it as addicting. They continue to talk about it between classes. And...THEY CONTINUE TO LEARN. Check out these comments:
Flamingos can live in flocks up to 20. They need water,and space with elaphants or babboons.By the way, two of the learning targets my students are supposed to be learning from this are:
Zebras can live in heards up to 12. They need water and shrubs or grasses.
Lions can live in prides up to four. They need water and zebras or hares.
Hares can live in very big groups. They need grasses, no water, and lots of space because they breed quickly.
Elephants can live in groups up to 5. They need trees, shrubs, grasses, and water.
Jewels are essential because you get food and water from them so jewels are needed for everything to live.
- Summarize that organisms can only survive in ecosystems in which their needs can be met. (food, water, shelter, air, carrying capacity, waste disposal)
Support how an organism’s patterns of behavior are related to the nature of that organism’s ecosystem, including the kinds and numbers of other organisms present, the availability of food and resources, and the changing physical characteristics of the ecosystem.
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