The Department of Natural Resources announced that the seventh- and eighth-graders of Homeschool ACADEMY, Inc. in Wayne, Michigan, are the winners of the 2014-15 Year in the Life of a Bear contest.
This group of students participated in the A Year in the Life of a Michigan Black Bear education program in their homeschool academy co-op throughout the 2014-15 school year. They spent the year learning all about Michigan black bears and applied what they learned to create this engaging presentation:
All classrooms participating in the A Year in the Life of a Michigan Black Bear program are eligible to submit an entry to the Year in the Life of a Bear contest. For the contest, classes use what they have learned about bears to interpret or tell the story of a year in the life of a Michigan black bear. Classes can detail the actual journey of the bear they followed, or get creative and use the information they’ve learned to interpret a typical bear’s activities throughout a year.
The first-place contest winners are awarded a $1,000 gift certificate to purchase science supplies for their classroom. The Michigan Bear Hunters Association and the DNR provide the prizes.
Mrs. Winkler‘s sixth-grade class at Portland St. Patrick in Portland, Michigan, placed second and will win at $500 gift certificate. View their presentation here:
Mr. Lazar’s sixth-graders at Grand Traverse Academy in Traverse City, Michigan, placed third and will win a $250 gift certificate. View their presentation here:
A Year in the Life of a Michigan Black Bear is a free educational program open to all interested sixth-, seventh- and eighth-grade educators in Michigan. Participants will learn about the life cycle of the Michigan black bear and general black bear biology and behavior, as well as how the DNR manages and maintains a healthy black bear population.
Over the school year, participants also will get to “follow” a bear by using actual data points from a radio-collared Michigan black bear to monitor the bear through its seasonal movements.
To learn more about the bear education program, please visit www.michigan.gov/wildlife and click on the “Education” button. The online application form should be submitted by Aug. 1 in order to receive the materials for the upcoming school year.
Educators will need to have access to a computer lab and the Internet for the students to be able to use the mapping application to follow the bear. Educators also will need to be able to access the Internet (YouTube) in their classrooms. An Educator Guide with activities and video lessons is provided to participants.
Explore additional DNR Education and Outreach opportunities at www.michigan.gov/dnr, by clicking on the Education & Outreach tab on the left-side menu.
Source: MI DNR