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Photo by Pierre Miyamoto via Pexels

Database Provider

Authors

The Kid Should See This, Dr. Emily Fairfax

Grades

3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th

Subjects

Science, Biology, Earth and Space Sciences

Resource Types

  • Videos, 44 seconds, CC, Subtitles
  • Articles and Websites

Regional Focus

North America, United States, USA - West

Beaver Dams and Wildfire, a Stop-Motion Demonstration

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Synopsis
  • This brief stop-motion video illustrates how beaver dams have the ability to change their surrounding environment, particularly in ways that can slow the spread of wildfires. 
  • Through this video, article, and related links, students will learn about the hydrologic functions of beaver dams and how they might play a role in building climate resilience in their ecosystem. 
Teaching Tips

Positives

  • The video is playful and engaging, providing students with a visual demonstration of how beaver dams can be beneficial to their ecosystem. 
  • This resource provides links to more than 10 additional sites that provide further learning. 

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students should have basic background knowledge of beavers and why they build dams. 

Differentiation

  • A graphic organizer (such as an "already Know-Want to know-what did I Learn" chart) may help students activate background knowledge and compare their prior knowledge about beavers to new learning. 
  • Since the video is short, teachers might choose to show it more than once to give students an opportunity to process their understanding of the concept. 
  • Have students create their own 3-D models in pairs (using pencils, rulers, erasers, or whatever is on hand) to match the video and then have them explain it to you or to another group.
  • Art classes could discuss how stop-motion animation helps illustrate concepts and students could also demonstrate their own new learning through drawings or other art forms. 
Scientist Notes
This resource is a 45-second stop-motion animation demonstrating the ways in which beavers and beaver dams can change stream ecosystems and make them more resilient to disturbances such as wildfires. This is a cute and effective stop-motion animation. This resource is recommended for teaching.
Standards
  • Science
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • MS-ESS3-2. Analyze and interpret data on natural hazards to forecast future catastrophic events and inform the development of technologies to mitigate their effects.
    • LS2: Interactions, Energy, and Dynamics Within Ecosystems
      • MS-LS2-2. Construct an explanation that predicts patterns of interactions among organisms across multiple ecosystems.
  • English Language Arts
    • Reading (K-12)
      • R.4.1 Locate and refer to relevant details and evidence when explaining what a text says explicitly/implicitly and make logical inferences. (RI&RL)
    • Speaking & Listening (K-12)
      • SL.3.2 Determine main ideas and supporting details of a text read aloud or information presented in diverse media and formats.
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