Classroom Package: Where
Where on the Globe is Ecuador? (K-3) -
Use the globe to locate Ecuador and the Amazon Rain Forest. Have students
identify their own continent, South America, the Andes Mountains, the Amazon
River and the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. Have students note that the Andes
Mountains run north-south on the western (Pacific Ocean) side of South America
and that the Amazon River runs west to east across the continent and empties
into the Atlantic Ocean. Have them consider how the Andes help form the Amazon
(see #2 below).
2. Where on the Map is Limoncocha?
(4 and up) - After completing the Where on the Globe is Ecuador activity
(above), have students take a closer look at South America using a map. Have
them identify its main features (mountains, rivers, oceans, etc.) and the
countries that contain part of the Amazon rain forest (Brazil, Peru, Bolivia,
Colombia, Ecuador, Venezuela and Guyana). Have them compare the sizes of their
own country with the Amazon rain forest and the countries that contain part
of it; and have them compare the size of their own country/state/province
with Ecuador. Next look at a map of Ecuador. (On-line, Geology.com <<
>> has good political maps and Atlapedia << http://www.atlapedia.com/
>> has good physical maps.)
The Amazon River Elementary School
is located in an Ecuadorian village called Limoncocha, which is just north
of the Napo River (Rio Napo) at 0° 25'S, 76° 58' W. Can your students
locate the Napo? Can they pinpoint the location of Limoncocha? What North
American towns or cities are directly north of Limoncocha? What river does
the Napo empty into? What ocean does that river empty into? Roughly
how far does the water travel before it reaches this ocean? Where do
the first waters of this river begin flowing? Explain to them that rain and
melting snow that run down the eastern side of the Andes form the Napo River
(and many other rivers) and that the Napo eventually flows into the Amazon
River which, in turn, crosses the continent and empties into the Atlantic
Ocean. The Amazon River is not the longest river in the world (the Nile is),
but is the main river in the world's largest river system. Have students consider
how this can be and then visit this Children
of the Amazon adventure page for an explanation. (Click on the 'Tell
Me About It' button and use your BACK button to return here.)
3. How to Get to Ecuador
(K-3) - After completing Where on the Globe is Ecuador (above), have
students trace the route they will travel to get to Ecuador from your home
state/province. Ask students in what direction(s) they will travel and by
what means they might go. Have them estimate the distance in miles or kilometers
and have them estimate a travel time. Having students consider that the village
they will travel to is next to a large river (the Napo) in the Amazon region
of Ecuador, give them a list of means of transportation (car, bus, taxi, train,
ship, small airplane, jet, llama, canoe, bike and feet) and have them come
up with a variety of ways to get from your school to a school in the rain
4. How to Get to Limoncocha
(4 and up) - Modify How to Get to Ecuador (above) to fit your grade
level. After students determine their routes and what means of transportation
they will use, have them compare their results to those described in the article,
'How to Find Limoncocha.' Vist the project's E-Travel
Logs and compare your routes, the one in the article and the actual route
taken by Project Coordinator Paul Hurteau to reach Limoncocha.
5. Things That Go to Make Up a Life
(K and up) - Brainstorm with your students to create a long list
of things that make up their lives (allow a wide range of responses both general
and very specific). Have students determine which items on the list are general
and which are specific, then have them break up the items into categories,
listing specific items under general categories. The overall list should provide
a snapshot of the life and culture of your students. Next, have your students
do the activity considering the lives of children who live in the Amazon rain
forest. Save the list and, when your class has finished your classroom travels
to the Amazon, review it to determine how accurate the snapshot your students
had in their minds about rain forest children was. Modify the list based on
what you learned by completing the project and discuss it as a cultural snapshot.
6. Similarities and Differences
(4 and up) - A key social skill for all children is to understand that people
are all similar in ways and different in ways. Discuss similarities and differences
between students in your own classroom. Encourage students to speak of similarities
and differences in a inclusive and inoffensive way. Both should be celebrated:
similarities bind us as human beings and differences make us special and able
to make unique contributions to the world around us. After, using the list
you made in Things That Go to Make Up a Life (above), discuss ways
that students in your class are similar and different to rain forest children.
Discuss how both are uniquely capable of contributing to the welfare of the
Amazon rain forest. Revisit the discussion at the completion of your classroom
7. Packing Your Bags I
(Math Activity) (K-3) - Have your students make a list of which items they
would bring with them if they were traveling to the rain forest for six weeks.
Have them take into consideration the weather and the environment as well
as health and entertainment. Also consider what activities you will be doing
in the rain forest and consider what items you might be able to purchase or
acquire there. Make sure they list how many of each item they would bring.
When they've completed the list, have them add up the total number of items.
Next, tell them they have to fit all of their items into one large suitcase.
Have them prioritize the items eliminating those that are least important.
Next have them estimate how many of each item they could fit in the suitcase.
If possible, have each student bring in one item on the list (or something
of similar size that could represent the item - i.e. a small box instead of
a camera). Bring in a large suitcase and see if you can fit all of your items
into it. If not, have students prioritize further until they can get everything
in. Compare the number of items on the original list with the number of items
that actually fit in the suitcase.
8. Packing Your Bags II (Math
Activity) (4 and up) - Modify Packing Your Bags I (above) by telling
your students, after they have made their initial list of items, that the
airline they will be flying to Ecuador has a baggage limit of 70 pounds or
(rounding off) 30 kilograms. Have students estimate the weight of all the
items on their list, then prioritize considering their estimations and the
weight limit. When they've pared the list down, have them bring in the items
and check them for actual weight, comparing the results with their estimates.
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