What’s Right With Our Schools: Interactive Zoo used as a learning tool for students
DUBLIN, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – Some first graders in Laurens County are stepping away from the books and learning first hand about animals, from other students.
First graders have been studying and researching animals inside of the classroom. Now, they’re bringing that research to life.
Students put together an interactive zoo to give a visual demonstration on how a specific animal looks and to share more information about the animals.
Second grader Tyler Clark has an important role at the zoo.
“I am suppose to help classes go around and look at the animals and learn more about the animals,” Clark says.
There are several stations set up with different animals. Students can interact with them by asking questions.
First grader Abigail Sterling says some of the questions include, “What do you think you look like? What are your babies like? What do you eat? And where do you live?”
In the process of answering those questions, they’re expanding their knowledge too because they’ve researched the answers before coming to the zoo.
“I’ve learned that penguins cannot fly. They can only just swim and walk on ice,” says first grader Zion Dixon.
First grader Liam Johnson dressed up like a frog and he also learned a lot about them. “They eat flies and other small creatures like that and they weigh 5 to 8 pounds,” he adds.
When the students go to the different stations, they press a button to make the animals come alive.
Second grader Ty Baumann says, “I learned about some snow animals. I went to go visit some forest animals and also I visited my favorite little fluffy animal the harp seal.”
The students find the interactive zoo a fun way to learn and teachers agree.
“It’s important that they get to see the animals up close and interact with them, rather than just sitting in a classroom and they’re able to interact one on one with the animals and hopefully they learn new information that they haven’t thought about before from the animals themselves,” first grade teacher Traci Andres explains.
The zoo is giving students an opportunity to learn something best taught by interacting with animals themselves–or in this case, fellow students, which makes the learning environment more successful.
Mrs. Andres adds she plans to continue using the interactive zoo as a learning tool for the students.