Join other homeschoolers aged 11–15 as we work on developing skills needed to become a naturalist. Each session will include a combination of classroom activities and field activities, and the skills introduced in each session will be practiced in subsequent meetings.
$48 for all 4 sessions
September 2: Insects Investigations and Field Notebooks
Did you know that insects make up 80% of the world’s species of animals? Take part in an insect investigation right here at Blue Jay using equipment an entomologist might use. At the same time, you'll begin a Field Notebook, which is a record of observations that may later help us answer questions and remember what we've seen.
October 7: Tree ID Beyond the Leaves
You can ID trees by leaves, but also by buds, bark, flowers, fruit and growth patterns! Use Blue Jay's collection of tree boxes to bone up on your favorite tree (or your new favorite tree!) before heading out into the field for field ID by dichotomous keys and more.
November 18: Bird Adaptations
Birds are amazing feats of engineering! Join us for hands-on comparative exploration of feathers, wings, beaks, feet and more, followed by a bird hike to see these adaptations in action. We will be collecting and entering data in Blue Jay's online Natural Resource Inventory Database!
December 2: Skullduggery
The term "skullduggery" means "crafty deception or trickery" – well, there's no deception in this class, but we'll show you the craft and tricks of keying out mammal skulls through the use of dichotomous keys. Learn about the structure and function of various teeth, and discover how to relate skull and teeth adaptations to the daily lives of mammals.