Summary of Penguins and Seals - seasonal monitoring of chicks and pups | NZ teachers, enrol in this LEARNZ virtual field trip

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Summary Page: Penguins and Seals - seasonal monitoring of chicks and pups
Term 4 starting 7 November 2012.



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In preparation for this field trip you will learn about

  • penguins in general
  • New Zealand penguins
  • little blue penguins in particular, including their life cycle
  • seals in general
  • New Zealand seals
  • NZ fur seals in particular, including their life cycle
  • the threats to penguins and seals and their conservation
During the field trip you will
  • get up close to penguin chicks and adults and seal pups and their parents
  • use technology like a burrow scope
  • take part in daily and seasonal conservation work
  • carry out a population count and apply estimation techniques
  • catch a one-year-old seal pup
  • get close to a fluffy blue penguin chick
  • find out the life stories of pups and chicks so far
  • assess the health of individual animals by taking measurements and samples, then process and interpret the data
  • explore the rocky shore and discover what makes up the local food chains
  • discover the reasons why penguins and seals are under attack from local and global threats, what steps are being taken to conserve them and what you can do to help
  • relate our marine life to local and global issues like sustainability, climate change, food webs, water, interconnectedness, the land/sea interface and human activity

Where you will go

Charleston, near Westport is home to many little blue penguins/kororā - the smallest penguin in the world. The population and range of the little blue penguin has been declining in areas not protected from predators. Cape Foulwind, a half-hour's drive from Charleston, is at the north-western tip of the South Island where it is home to the New Zealand fur seal/kekeno.

Learning Areas/Levels

Science: Living World Levels 1-4, Nature of Science Levels 1-4; Social Sciences: Social Studies Levels 2-4

  • Vision, Values, Key Competencies, Principles, Literacy and Numeracy

    By their nature, LEARNZ field trips integrate with the higher levels of the NZ Curriculum. Participation encourages development of the Key Competencies around Thinking, Using language, symbols and text, Managing self, Relating to others, and Participating and contributing. Teachers indicate this in testimonials. LEARNZ field trips have support and activities for Literacy, with opportunities to develop skills in Listening, Reading and Viewing and in Speaking, Writing and Presenting. More about LEARNZ as a Reading Resource and student writing opportunities with LEARNZ. Select LEARNZ field trips have support and activities for Numeracy, encouraging the development of skills in Number and Algebra, in Statistics and in Geometry and Measurement.

  • ESOL

    As well as providing visual and audio material and access to real experiences, LEARNZ links well to ESOL Principles, especially Principle 3 Maintain and make explicit the same learning outcomes for all the learners. How can I make the lesson comprehensible to all students? How can I plan the learning tasks so that all the students are actively involved? Do my students understand the learning outcomes? Principle 4 Begin with context embedded tasks which make the abstract concrete. How can I put these concepts into a concrete context?

  • What's in a Field Trip

    Every LEARNZ field trip has its own newly-built, self-contained web site ready for integration into your teaching and learning programme. Teacher Support has curriculum integration, resources, newsletters, support and evaluation. Prepare Students provides opportunities for student inquiry on two sets of image-rich background pages at reading levels 2 years apart, (students can click to have those pages read to them out loud), online interactive and other activities to check students' understanding, and a glossary. During the field trip there are live tweets on twitter, and daily additions such as a diary, video clips, profiles of the experts (ideal careers education), a photo gallery, and ambassador (mascot) page updates. Live web conferences via Adobe Connect enable teachers to managed students putting prepared and spontaneous questions to experts (recorded for replay). After the field trip, teachers are encouraged to take further action with their class in the community or to go on a related field trip, or to invite a guest speaker, or to present what they have learned to a wider group. Teachers also fill in an online evaluation (more about reflective practice), the field trip prize winner is drawn, and the final newsletter is sent. Content remains online for continued use.

  • How teachers use LEARNZ

    View teacher comments in testimonials and in the LEARNZ Group on the VLN. There are two main ways teachers use a LEARNZ virtual field trip with their class. Firstly, a LEARNZ field trip is ideally an immersive, engaging, synchronous, online learning experience with real-time components and a myriad of opportunities for teachers and students. Secondly, and less ideal but still effective, a LEARNZ field trip can be used as a retrospective experience where the resources such as photos, text, activities, videos and audioconferences/web conferences comprise a unique collection of authentic, contemporary New Zealand teaching and learning material.

  • What Now

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Introductory video for this field trip: Watch, embed or share on Vimeo or click below to watch here.



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Andrew the LEARNZ Field Trip Teacher.

Meet Andrew, your LEARNZ Field Trip Teacher

Inquiry Topics: birds, Cape Foulwind, Charleston, climate change, conservation, flightless birds, food webs, mammals, marine communities, oceans, penguins, population, recovery programme, seals, West Coast

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