iNaturalist is a website and app where people like you record the living things they observe. There are nearly 40,000,000 observations worldwide! On the iNaturalist Observations page, explore the area near where you live. You can change the language at the bottom right corner of the page. Here are some questions to think about while exploring:
Learn about how energy from the sun causes air masses to move, creating weather.
This short video from the science program NOVA, explaining the basics of weather, is available in both english and spanish.
This Crash Course Kids video will help you understand the difference between “weather” and “climate”.
Considerations: This game is best when you know some of the information, so you may want to read some questions/answers before playing the game.
Often we only notice clouds when we’re experiencing weather or seeing a beautiful sunset, but clouds are important components of a complex global weather system. Watch this series of videos from PBS and answer the questions to learn more!
While watching The Making of A Cloud video, answer the following questions:
While watching the Why So Many Cloud Types video answer the following questions:
Feeling like you know the different types of clouds? Try your hand at this cloud lab activity challenge to practice classifying clouds. Be sure to use the key in the bottom left of the window to help you in the process!
If you want to see how clouds are always in motion, check out this cloud video from the Cloud Appreciation Society.
What's the difference between dirt and soil? So much!
Watch this short video to learn more about the important role of soil: How Dirt Works
Answer the following question while watching the accompanying video segments.
Want to play a game testing your soil knowledge? Try The Great Plant Escape.
Or play a card game with the family? Try this Soil Card Game for some family fun.
What do all arthropods have in common? What are the different kinds of arthropods? Check out the Arthropods page from PBS to learn more.
Many arthropods are too small to observe without special equipment like microscopes, or they may be hard to find. Fortunately, we can learn about these arthropods online!
To see what kinds of wildlife people have been observing in their homes around the world, explore the Never Home Alone iNaturalist project.
Take some time to watch videos about pollinators, see pictures of them, and read about their lives and how important they are to ecosystems. The linked videos and sites will give you good background on questions such as:
Meet the pollinators: Want to learn about pollinators by reading about different types of pollinators? Try this site from the University of California and select the tabs that interest you (beetles, moths, bees, etc).
Test Your Knowledge:
Want to see how much you can learn about pollinators? The U.S. Department of Agriculture has a “jeopardy” game about pollinators. You can follow the directions to play from the main topic board, and see if you know the answers to each question. Or, you could go through all the questions and answers first, and then play the game to see how much you remember!
If you don't have any live flowers to dissect, check out this online flower dissection! Click on "Flower 1" on the left side of the page to get started with the virtual dissection.
Budburst tracks plant life events like getting flowers and leaves in the spring. Explore the maps to learn about plants found in Oregon.
Considerations: Requires device with an internet connection.
Have you ever wondered about the environmental benefits provided by trees in your neighborhood? I-Tree is a web-based tool designed by the US Forest Service where you can input data from one or more trees growing in your community and calculate the benefits they provide. Watch this video to learn how to calculate the benefits of a tree near you. (instrucciones en español, página 13)
Almost everyone loves games! In Bird Song Hero, listen to birdsongs and match them to a visual “spectrogram” showing the different types of sounds in the song. It’s a really fun way to hone your listening skills and learn about birdsongs you might hear when you’re out exploring - or just sitting quietly inside! As an extra challenge, you could try drawing a spectrogram of a birdsong in your own journal. Once you finish Birdsong Hero, try some of the other games, or explore other parts of the Cornell Labs site like their live Bird Cams of birds of prey, songbirds, and water foul.
Bird Song Hero Game (challenge yourself to identify bird songs...and look for the robot!)
Bird Academy Play Lab (eight games & interactive tutorials)
Bird Cams (live cams on real birds nests!)