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Zoo Animal Enclosures

Hello, agents! Double-O STEM here with an important mission. Dylan needs your help with a problem at the local zoo.

Think about these questions as you watch the video. Write answers in your Double-O STEM Club notebook.

  1. Why were the giraffes relocated?
  2. What is happening to the giraffes’ old enclosure?
  3. What are the details of your mission? 
Image preview of a YouTube video

Watch on YouTube https://edtechbooks.org/-DeLx

After students watch the video, click the activity links below to start this mission.
 
Getting Started
 

In this Zoo Animal Enclosure case, learners will use library resources to complete the following tasks listed below. The learner version of the case can be found using this link.

  • Watch the case introduction video and identify the main character's problem.
  • Research and brainstorm enclosures based on specific animal habitats and needs.
  • Design and develop a basic zoo enclosure prototype.
  • Gather feedback throughout the process and incorporate as needed.
  • Reflect on the process, findings, successes, and failures of the prototypes.

Learners will need a place to take notes as they brainstorm and research solutions to the problem. Although questions are presented in the agent section of the online chapter, this course also includes a downloadable handbook for each case with brief activity descriptions, questions, thinking prompts, and white space for taking notes. This is presented as an "agent handbook," as learners are acting as new agents helping the main character with the mission/problem. Librarians may choose to download and print this handbook for learners or have them do it. Alternatively, librarians may decide to have learners type answers on a computer or provide learners with a folder in which to place the printouts or spiral notebook in which to write answers, sketch ideas, etc. 

The following link to the handbook is also available to students in their student version of this book.

Double-O STEM Club Agent Handbook: Zoo Animal Enclosures

For your convenience, the student version of each activity is located in the "Think," "Create," and "Share & Grow" sections of this book.

Learning Objectives

  • The agent will describe the main problem associated with the presented case.
  • The agent will articulate questions suitable for library research based on identified problems in the case.
  • The agent will determine parameters for what a successful solution to the problem entails in light of the contextual constraints.
  • The agent will use library databases and circulation materials to examine identified research questions.
  • Based on findings from conducted library research, the agent will hypothesize one or more solutions to an identified problem in the case.
  • The agent will design a zoo enclosure prototype that considers the habitat and needs of specific animals.
  • The agent will develop instruments to collect data regarding identified problems/solutions.
  • The agent will collect, analyze, and reflect on data from developed instruments.
  • The agent will revise work based on analyzed data and feedback.
  • The agent will identify benefits and limitations of their prototype using evaluation criteria.
  • The agent will revise prototypes based on evaluation feedback.
  • Based on conducted research, describe what plants and animals from your animals’ habitat could survive in your climate.
  • Describe options the zoo might take to simulate these plants/animals or alter conditions to help them thrive in your enclosure.  
  • Describe problems and possible solutions with making your animals visible to visitors at the zoo.
  • Develop a list of criteria necessary for the animals to function well within the zoo.  

Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) - Engineering

American Association of School Librarians (AASL) Standards - Inquiry

  • A.A.1: Learners display curiosity and initiative by formulating questions about a personal interest or a curricular topic.
  • A.A.2: Learners display curiosity and initiative by recalling prior and background knowledge as context for new meaning.
  • A.B.1: Learners engage with new knowledge by following a process that includes using evidence to investigate questions.
  • A.B.2: Learners engage with new knowledge by following a process that includes devising and implementing a plan to fill knowledge gaps.
  • A.B.3: Learners engage with new knowledge by following a process that includes generating products that illustrate learning.
  • A.C.1: Learners adapt, communicate, and exchange learning products with others in a cycle that includes interacting with content presented by others.
  • A.C.3: Learners adapt, communicate, and exchange learning products with others in a cycle that includes acting on feedback to improve. 
  • A.D.1-4: Learners participate in an ongoing inquiry-based process by continually seeking knowledge, engaging in sustained inquiry, enacting new understanding through real-world connections, and using reflection to guide informed decisions.

Learning Activities

Think

In this case, the Double-O STEM Club’s mission is to design a mixed species enclosure for some of the new large and small zoo animals that will be arriving. The mixed enclosure design needs to mimic the animal’s natural habitat and accommodate their lifestyle and behavioral needs. During this activity, Double-O STEM Club agents will identify and describe the main problem presented in the video, discuss possible solutions with peers, and formulate research questions based on identified problem(s) and prior knowledge.

Materials

  • This case video
  • Notebooks and writing instruments for each agent to document ideas and questions
  • Computer with LCD projector/television display
  • Tool to capture agent ideas (easel pad, whiteboard, computer)
  • Example images of a local mixed species zoo enclosure. If none are available locally, share examples from another part of the country (e.g., Columbus; St. Louis; Chicago)

Setup

This activity includes whole-class and group discussion. Set up an area that allows the librarian to introduce the case and share examples. Provide agents with notebooks and writing instruments and encourage them to capture ideas (through words and illustrations) as they work on this case. Allow agents to brainstorm problems associated with the case and questions that may require additional research. Capture main ideas on a whiteboard, easel pad, or other medium. Be sure to ask agents if there are aspects of other cases they have completed that might apply in this case. 

Agent View

Activity 1: Discussion

Now that you have seen the video, work with other Double-O STEM Club agents to think about the problem and a solution. 

Guiding Questions:

  • What is the main problem?
  • What other problems did you notice?
  • What research questions need to be answered to help you design a solution?

Learning Objectives

  • The agent will describe the main problem associated with the presented case.
  • The agent will articulate questions suitable for library research based on identified problems in the case.

Next Generation Science Standards - Engineering:

  • 3-5 ETS1-1 Engineering Design: Define a simple design problem reflecting a need or want that includes criteria for success and constraints on time, cost, or materials.

American Association of School Librarians Standards - Inquiry:

  • A.A.1: Learners display curiosity and initiative by formulating questions about a personal interest or a curricular topic.
  • A.A.2: Learners display curiosity and initiative by recalling prior and background knowledge as context for new meaning

In this Double-O STEM Club activity, agents will research specific information about the habitat and needs of the two animals - one large and one small - that they chose from the case. For example, learners may ask the following: where they live; the climate of those locations; the flora and fauna native to those locations; their diet, and others. They will use their research skills to write questions, conduct research, and share their findings with others. agents should receive instruction about how to answer their questions using library resources (e.g. reference and circulation materials, databases, Internet searches). 

Materials

  • This case video
  • Note taking tools for each agent (e.g., notebook, pencil)
  • Computers with Internet access for individuals or small groups
  • A list of vetted resources that can help get agents started if they are having trouble finding the answers to their research questions
  • Resources to capture brainstorm/survey ideas and questions (e.g., easel pad, computer with LCD projector)

Setup

Prior to the lesson, set up a seating arrangement that allows for whole class and small group discussion. First, individuals/small groups need to select which two animals they will choose to research for their mixed species enclosure area - one large and one small. Remind agents about the example in the case of the giraffes living with the golden lion tamarins to help them get started. Then, help them to write research questions about their specific animals’ natural habitats and behaviors. At the end, bring the individuals/small groups back together to share and discuss findings.

Agent View

Activity 2: Animal Habitats Research

Choose two animals, one large and one small, to design a mixed-species enclosure. Research their natural habitats and lifestyle needs. Talk with your fellow agents about the best places to search for your answers. Take notes and share them with other Double-O STEM Club agents.

Guiding Questions:

  • What information do you need to help Dylan?
  • What questions will you consider answering through research?
  • Where should you find the information?
  • What search terms would help you find the best information?
  • How do you know your sources are good? Write down your notes. 

Learning Objectives

  • The agent will describe the main problem associated with the presented case.
  • The agent will articulate questions suitable for library research based on identified problems in the case.
  • The agent will determine parameters for what a successful solution to the problem entails in light of the contextual constraints.
  • The agent will use library databases and circulation materials to examine identified research questions.
  • Using library resources and the Internet, research information about the natural habitats of the two animals you chose (e.g., where do they live; what is the climate there; what is the flora (plants) and fauna (animals); what do they eat?
  • Using library resources and the Internet, research information about the lifestyle, behaviors, and movements of your animal that may impact enclosure design (e.g., height, width, climbing areas).
  • The agent will share his or her findings with others.

Next Generation Science Standards - Engineering

American Association of School Librarians Standards - Inquiry

  • A.A.1: Learners display curiosity and initiative by formulating questions about a personal interest or a curricular topic.
  • A.B.2: Learners engage with new knowledge by following a process that includes devising and implementing a plan to fill knowledge gaps.
  • A.D.1-4: Learners participate in an ongoing inquiry-based process by continually seeking knowledge, engaging in sustained inquiry, enacting new understanding through real-world connections, and using reflection to guide informed decisions.

Now that Double-O STEM Club agents have chosen two animals for the mixed species enclosure and researched about their habitats and lifestyle needs, they will use this information to begin designing a mixed enclosure space evaluation checklist. A draft evaluation checklist or rubric should be developed to help agents know what they should strive to accomplish as they develop and test prototypes. At a minimum, evaluation criteria should emphasize design constraints for their spaces, including what vegetation and animals are able to survive in their local climate (e.g., African fig trees may be native to their animals’ habitat, but they might not survive in the agents' local climate). 

Materials

  • Note taking tools for each agent (e.g., notebook, pencil)
  • Computers with Internet access for individuals or small groups
  • Resources to capture brainstorm/survey ideas and questions (e.g., easel pad, computer with LCD projector 

Setup

Prior to the lesson, set up a seating arrangement that allows for whole class and small group discussion. First, individuals/small groups need to revisit the flora and fauna of their animals’ natural habitat that they already researched. Then, help them to write research questions about what constraints they might have trying to replicate that habitat in their local climate. They also need to write research questions related to the constraints of the design based on visibility and safety for zoo visitors. At the end, bring the individuals/small groups back together to present their findings and discuss what it means for their design challenge.

Agent View

Activity 3: Prototype Design Criteria

Now that you have chosen two animals for the mixed species enclosure and researched about their habitats and lifestyle needs, you will use this information to begin designing a mixed enclosure space evaluation checklist. Try to create 8-12 items for your checklist.

Guiding Questions:

  • What are the space requirements for each animal?
  • Can feeders and veterinarians access the animals easily?
  • Will zoo patrons have a good view to observe the animals?
  • What vegetation is able to survive in your local climate? (e.g., African fig trees may be native to their animals’ habitat, but they might not survive in your local climate).
  • What animals are able to survive in your local climate?
  • Are the elements of the habitats of each animal safe for both animals together in the enclosure?

Learning Objectives

  • Based on conducted research, describe what plants and animals from your animals’ habitat could survive in your climate.
  • Describe options the zoo might take to simulate these plants/animals or alter conditions to help them thrive in your enclosure.  
  • Describe problems and possible solutions with making your animals visible to visitors at the zoo.
  • Develop a list of criteria necessary for the animals to function well within the zoo.  
    • The agent will write questions suitable for library research related to the natural habitats, lifestyle behaviors, and movements of the animals he or she chose.
    • The agent will use library databases and circulation materials to examine identified research questions
    • The agent will share his or her findings with the others.

Next Generation Science Standards - Engineering

American Association of School Librarians Standards - Inquiry

  • A.A.1: Learners display curiosity and initiative by formulating questions about a personal interest or a curricular topic.
  • A.B.2: Learners engage with new knowledge by following a process that includes devising and implementing a plan to fill knowledge gaps.
  • A.D.1-4: Learners participate in an ongoing inquiry-based process by continually seeking knowledge, engaging in sustained inquiry, enacting new understanding through real-world connections, and using reflection to guide informed decisions.

Prior to developing a prototype, Double-O STEM Club agents should take some time to plan it. They should consider the following questions:

  • What will they build?
  • What will it look like?
  • How large will it be?
  • What will it hold?

Using either a piece of paper or a computer application, the groups should develop a detailed schematic for their zoo enclosure. They should use the results from their research and their evaluation checklist to help them consider ideas/details. Remind agents to keep track of their design decisions in their handbooks.

Materials

  • Examples of mixed species zoo enclosures (from websites, books, brochures, etc.)
  • Engineering or graph paper or computer software for each agent
  • Writing instruments (e.g., pen, pencil)
  • Rulers or straight edges
  • Agent notebooks to record ideas
  • Tools to project agent work (e.g., document camera, smartphone camera, computer, LCD screen)

Setup

This activity includes small and whole group discussion. Prior to the lesson, set up a seating arrangement that allows for whole and small group discussion around a hands-on activity. Focus the seating arrangement so agents have space to draw but can still see each other in classroom and small group discussions.  

Agent View

Activity 4: Animal Enclosure Schematic

Before developing a prototype, take some time to plan it. Take notes as you think about and discuss the questions on the right with the other Double-O STEM Club agents. Create a schematic (a drawing that represents what you want to build) of your zoo enclosure. 

Guiding Questions:

  • What will you build?
  • What will it look like?
  • How large will it be?
  • What will it hold?
  • How will veterinarians, trainers, gardeners, and cleaners enter the area?
  • How will visitors observe the area?
  • How will your animals interact with the environment around them?

Learning Objectives

  • The agent will hypothesize one or more solutions to an identified problem in the case based on findings from conducted library research.
  • The agent will develop a list of criteria based on their analysis of research to help guide the creation of a prototype.
  • The agent will create a detailed schematic of the space that includes labels.

Next Generation Science Standards - Engineering

  • 3-5 ETS1-1 Engineering Design: Define a simple design problem reflecting a need or want that includes criteria for success and constraints on time, cost, or materials.
  • 3-5-ETS1-2 Engineering Design: generate and compare multiple possible solutions for a problem and compare constraints and success criteria.

American Association of School Librarians Standards - Inquiry

  • A.A.2: Learners display curiosity and initiative by recalling prior and background knowledge as context for new meaning.
  • A.B.3: Learners engage with new knowledge by following a process that includes generating products that illustrate learning.
  • A.C.3: Learners adapt, communicate, and exchange learning products with others in a cycle that includes acting on feedback to improve. 
  • A.D.1-4: Learners participate in an ongoing inquiry-based process by continually seeking knowledge, engaging in sustained inquiry, enacting new understanding through real-world connections, and using reflection to guide informed decisions.

In this activity, Double-O STEM Club agents will use materials provided in the library to create a prototype diorama for a mixed species zoo enclosure that is specific to the two animals they chose (Note: While dioramas are encouraged, groups can get creative with their prototypes based on the resources they have available. Agents should document rationales for design decisions and be encouraged to brainstorm and share ideas with other groups. They should be able to defend their design decisions based on the information and constraints found during their research. 

Materials

  • Example dioramas or photos of dioramas so that agents can examine them
  • A list of the materials and resources available to agents to consider for their design (or allow agents to think of materials they may bring in from their own homes
  • Camera to document prototypes
  • Agent notebooks to record ideas
  • Computer with LCD Projector

Setup

This activity is largely hands-on. Prior to the lesson, set up a seating arrangement that allows for whole and small group discussion around a hands-on activity. Make sure there is ample space for agents to cut, fold, tape, and glue materials together. Organize craft materials so they are in a central location with easy access to agents. You may want to begin this lesson by reviewing some design techniques to help insulate and support structures. Encourage agents to document ideas in their notebooks. Also encourage them to refer to notebooks for design ideas from past sessions. Be sure to use the camera to capture work samples and design processes during the session.

Agent View

Activity 5: Animal Enclosure Prototype

Time to start building! Use the materials that you chose in the last step to create a prototype (an example for testing). Don’t worry about it looking nice. Focus on how it meets your criteria. Someone in your group should write down the design decisions your team makes along the way.

Guiding Questions:

  • Do you think your design will work to solve Dylan’s issue?
  • Why or why not?
  • What did you learn from making the prototype?

Learning Objectives

  • The agent will develop instruments to collect data regarding identified problems/solutions.
  • The agent will collect, analyze, and reflect on data from developed instruments.
  • The agent will revise work based on analyzed data and feedback.
  • The agent will identify benefits and limitations of their prototype using evaluation criteria.

Next Generation Science Standards - Engineering

American Association of School Librarians Standards - Inquiry

  • A.B.2: Learners engage with new knowledge by following a process that includes devising and implementing a plan to fill knowledge gaps.
  • A.B.3: Learners engage with new knowledge by following a process that includes generating products that illustrate learning.
  • A.C.3: Learners adapt, communicate, and exchange learning products with others in a cycle that includes acting on feedback to improve. 
  • A.D.1-4: Learners participate in an ongoing inquiry-based process by continually seeking knowledge, engaging in sustained inquiry, enacting new understanding through real-world connections, and using reflection to guide informed decisions.

In the test phase activity, Double-O STEM Club agents will share their designs with the other members of the Club and/or other library patrons for peer review. Have agents describe their mixed species enclosure design and the design decisions they used to develop it. Peer reviewers will have time to ask questions and make suggestions about the design. Librarians may need to help agents prepare questions that they will ask other individuals/groups regarding their designs based on design constraints and other criteria.

Based on the results of the peer reviews, agents will revise their prototype for a final showcase in the next activity. Agents should record their revisions and the rationale for each to support the justification for their final design.

Materials

  • The agents’ dioramas
  • Agent notebooks to remember ideas
  • Presentation tools as needed (e.g., easel pads, presentation software)

Setup

This activity includes individual and group presentation. Prior to the lesson, set up a space for each individual or group to be able to present their poster board prototype. Provide agents or other guest reviewers with notebooks, summaries of evaluation criteria for their prototypes, and questions they may want to ask about each design. Before beginning the presentations, librarians should work with the agents in a group to review the design criteria and constraints and prepare agents for evaluating each other’s work.

Agent View

Activity 6: Prototype Testing

Now, we need you to put your designs to the test. You will present your designs to Double-O STEM Club members and library guests. During your presentation, explain your design decisions. Answer any questions they have about the design. Ask them for suggestions on how to improve the design. One agent from the group should record the outcomes in your notebook. 

Guiding Questions:

  • What questions did they ask?
  • What suggestion did they make?
  • If you were to try it again, what would you do? Why would that be a better solution?
  • Do you need more information to design something that would solve Dylan’s problem? 

Learning Objectives

  • The agent(s) will describe their solution to the main problem associated with the presented case.
  • The agent(s) will identify the benefits and limitations of their prototype using evaluation criteria.

Next Generation Science Standards - Engineering

American Association of School Librarians Standards - Inquiry

  • A.C.1: Learners adapt, communicate, and exchange learning products with others in a cycle that includes interacting with content presented by others.
  • A.D.1-4: Learners participate in an ongoing inquiry-based process by continually seeking knowledge, engaging in sustained inquiry, enacting new understanding through real-world connections, and using reflection to guide informed decisions.

Based on the prototype testing in the last activity, Double-O STEM Club agents will revise their prototype for a final showcase in the next activity. Agents should record their revisions and rationales to support the justification for their final design. 

Materials

  • The agents’ dioramas or other prototypes
  • Material necessary for revision/rebuilding
  • Agent notebooks to remember ideas
  • Presentation tools as needed (e.g., easel pads, presentation software)

Setup

This activity includes individual and group work. Prior to the lesson, set up a space for each individual or group to be able to discuss the results of their prototype testing. Agents should review their notes from the testing to guide their revision discussions. They should be given time and resources to make any revisions to their design. Encourage agents to record their revisions and rationale for each revision based on feedback from the testing stage. Remind them that they will need to justify each design decision.

Agent View

Activity 7: Prototype Revisions

With feedback from others, it is time to revise your design. Based on the questions and suggestions from your prototype testing presentation, how will you revise? 

Guiding Questions:

  • What were the suggestions from your prototype testing?
  • How will you revise based on the feedback you received?
  • What did you learn from testing?

Learning Objectives

  • The agent will collect, analyze, and reflect on data from developed instruments.
  • The agent will revise work based on analyzed data and feedback.
  • The agent will identify benefits and limitations of their prototype using evaluation criteria.

Next Generation Science Standards - Engineering

American Association of School Librarians Standards - Inquiry

  • A.C.1: Learners adapt, communicate, and exchange learning products with others in a cycle that includes interacting with content presented by others.
  • A.D.1-4: Learners participate in an ongoing inquiry-based process by continually seeking knowledge, engaging in sustained inquiry, enacting new understanding through real-world connections, and using reflection to guide informed decisions.

After initial peer/patron/expert reviews, Double-O STEM Club agents will showcase their best prototype and the design decisions/ideas, and tests that led them to their solution. Have agents describe their prototype, the design decisions they used to develop it, how testing and reflection improved their product, and how they would continue to perfect the model if given the chance. Use this session to focus on celebrating accomplishments and creative thinking.

Materials

  • Agents’ dioramas or other prototype
  • Summarized feedback from evaluation criteria
  • Photographs and video captured from prior sessions
  • agent notebooks to remember ideas
  • Presentation tools (e.g., easel pads, presentation software)
  • Celebration Materials (e.g., party noise makers, confetti, banners)
  • Computers for agents to develop presentations (as applicable)
  • LCD projector (as applicable) to project presentations

Setup

This activity includes individual and group discussion. Prior to the lesson, set up a seating arrangement that allows for whole and small group discussion around group presentations. Make sure to decorate the presentation space with celebration materials. Provide agents with their notebooks, photographs and videos of prototypes and testing examples, summaries of evaluation criteria for their prototypes, and a copy of their best prototype. Also provide tools for groups to develop a short presentation about their work.

Agent View

Activity 8: Showcase & Reflection

Good job, agents! I know I could count on you to solve Dylan’s zoo enclosure problem. Now it is time to share your designs. As a group, you will present your revised prototype and your design decisions.

Guiding Questions:

  • Why did you make the package the way you did?
  • How did you improve your design based on your testing?

Learning Objectives

  • The agent will describe their solution to the main problem associated with the presented case.
  • The agent will identify the benefits and limitations of their prototype using evaluation criteria.

Next Generation Science Standards - Engineering

American Association of School Librarians Standards - Inquiry

  • A.C.1: Learners adapt, communicate, and exchange learning products with others in a cycle that includes interacting with content presented by others.
  • A.D.1-4: Learners participate in an ongoing inquiry-based process by continually seeking knowledge, engaging in sustained inquiry, enacting new understanding through real-world connections, and using reflection to guide informed decisions.

Celebration

Terrific zoo animal enclosures, agents! Watch the video below to wrap up this Double-O STEM Club mission.

Image preview of a YouTube video

Watch on YouTube https://edtechbooks.org/-nTEa