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TeachNet Grant: Project RAID (Researching Animals In Danger)
Renny Fong

Public School 130 Manhattan
143 Baxter Street
New York, New York 10013

Grade/Subject: Grade Level: 2-3/ Science, Technology
About the Grant:

Students will use the internet to research about animals in danger. They will visit preselected websites about endangered species, gather information, organize their research with webs or concept maps, and then report and present their findings to others.

How it Works:

Students will work in pairs and gather information through the internet, about an endangered species of their choice. Students will use Kidspiration or bubbl.us to organize their information. Students will become “experts” on the selected animals and then report and present their findings to others through a informational flyers and a PowerPoint presentation. After the presentations, students will discuss and write about what commonalities they found with the endangered species.

Final Project/Product:

Students will create an informational flyer about the endangered species that they have chosen. Students will pair up in teams to create a PowerPoint presentation of their findings.

Overall Value:

Students will learn how to better gather information and organize their online research from the internet. With each pair of students researching a different animal, each group will become an “expert ” on their animals. Because of the vast amount of information on the internet, by working in pairs and studying different animals, students will have a shared experience, but will have obtained vast amounts of different information.

How This Grant was Adapted:

By using portaportal.com (guest user name: projectraid), students will have many preselected student-friendly sites to look through. Students will work in pairs to look for information that pertains to their selected endangered species.

Project URL


  1. Students will be able together information from the internet about a particular endangered species and present their findings to the class.
  2. Students will come to realize that animals depend on each other and their physical environment.
  3. Students will show how human decisions and activities have had a profound impact on the p hysical and living environments by examining the factors that positively or negatively affect the physical environment and its resources.
  4. Students will be able to identify environmental factors that affect the survival of animals.
  5. Students will become “experts” on the endangered species of their choice.
Websites Used
  1. http://animal.discovery.com/guides/endangered/endangered.html
    A list of 6 different groups of endangered species, with links to endangered animals.
  2. http://endangeredspecie.com/
    A kid-friendly website about endangered species.
  3. http://bagheera.com/index.htm, http://endangeredearth.com/
    A site following the plight of endangered animals.
  4. http://worldwildlife.org/
    Description: World Wildlife Fund
  5. http://kidsplanet.org/factsheets/map.html
    An electronic fact sheet on over 50 species.
  6. http://arkive.org/
    A unique collection of thousands of wildlife videos, images and fact-files, with a special focus on the world's threatened species.
  7. http://earthsendangered.com/
    Resource about endangered animals.
  8. http://library.thinkquest.org/19689/data/menu.html
    A student-created website about endangered animals.
  9. http://fws.gov/endangered/kids/index.html
    The United States Fish and Wildlife Service Kids' Page
  10. http://nwf.org/wildlife
    National Wildlife Federation
  11. http://amnh.org/nationalcenter/Endangered/index.html
    A n exhibition from the American Museum of Natural History that investigate s endangered a nimals and endangered habitats.
  12. http://fws.gov/endangered/Kids/pdf/2004coloring_book.pdf
    The U.S Fis h and Wildlife Service The Enda ngered Species Coloring Book by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.  Definitions, websites, and other resources are included.
  13. http://epa.gov/espp/coloring
    Picture book from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that introduces the 21 endangered and threatened plants and animals found in the United States.
  14. http://library.thinkquest.org/25014/english.index.shtml?tqskip1=1&tqtime=0430
    Students in Singapore, the Netherlands, and California produced this w eb site on endangered species.
  15. http://scientificamerican.com/slideshow.cfm?id=threatened-wildlife-in-the-here-and-now
    A slideshow from Scientific American about species that are presently facing endangered status in North A merica.
  16. http://switcheroozoo.com/endangered.htm
    An interactive map of the United States that shows a list of endangered species in each state.
  17. http://kids.nationalgeographic.com/Animals
    National Geographic Kids Link
  18. http://guest.portaportal.com/projectraid
    A portaportal of all the links above.
  19. http://bubbl.us/
    A simple and free web application that lets you brainstorm online.
  20. http://kerpoof.com/
    Kerpoof's multimedia software is used by kids to create original artwork, animated movies, stories, greeting cards and more.  Teachers should go to http://kerpoof.com/teach to request creating a Teacher Account which allows the teacher to create student accounts.
Standards Addressed:

Standard 1: Information Systems – Information technology is used to retrieve, process, and communicate information and as a tool to enhance learning. Students use computer technology, traditional paper-based resources, and interpersonal discussions to learn, do, and share science in the classroom. Grade: K-4 Subject: Science

Standard 2: The Living Environment – Students will understand and apply scientific concepts, principles, and theories pertaining to the physical setting and living environment and recognize the historical development of ideas in science. Grade: K-4 Subject: Science

Standard 3: Key Ideas

  • Organisms maintain a dynamic equilibrium that sustains life.
  • Plants and animals depend on each other and their physical environment.
  • Human decisions and activities have had a profound impact on the physical and living environments
    Grade: K-4 Subject: Science

Standard 4: Major Understandings

  • Animals need air, water, and food in order to live and thrive.
  • Each animal has different structures that serve different functions in growth, survival, and reproduction.
  • In order to survive in their environment, plants and animals must be adapted to that environment.
  • The health, growth, and development of organisms are affected by environmental conditions such as the availability of food, air, water, space, shelter, heat, and sunlight.
  • Humans, as individuals or communities, change environments in ways that can be either helpful or harmful for themselves and other organisms.
Lesson 1:

Introduction to Project RAID (Researching Animals in Danger)

Project Objectives:

  1. Students will browse through websites about endangered species.
  2. Students will work in pairs to choose an endangered species of their choice.
  3. Students will copy and save the websites that they think will be helpful in their research.


  1. Computers with online access.
  2. Access to Portaportal.com (guest username: projectraid)
  3. Kidspiration or http://bubbl.us/


  1. Introduce the topic of Endangered Species. Use Kidspiration or bubbl.us to jot down what students know about endangered species a nd what they will be looking for in their research . Develop questions together about what they want to find out about an endangered species of their choice.
  2. Demonstrate to students how to get to http://portaportal.com/ on the computer and log in with projectraid guest username.
  3. Show students some of the links they will be using in their research.
  4. Model to students how to use Kidspiration or bubbl.us to begin their research by gathering and collecting relevant information, along with recording the sites and pages where they f ound their information. Students should also write down the questions that they are answering on the concept maps.
  5. Procedure 5: Give students time to work on the computers in pairs to select an endangered species and the research process.


Students can continue to use the http://portaportal.com/ site to research at home if they have internet access. Students should come up with questions that they want to answer about their endangered species on Post-its.


Students can journal about what they have found out on the internet and what their next steps should be. Students can continue to generate questions on Post-its for their research.

Lesson 2:

Location, Location, Location.

Project Objectives:

  1. Students will find out where their endangered species' habitats are located on the Earth.
  2. Students will become more familiar with different areas around the world.
  3. Students will examine the habitats and the environment of their endangered species.


  1. Computers with internet and Google Earth software
  2. An outline map of the world (e .g., http://abcteach.com/free/w/worldmap.pdf)
  3. Projector


  1. Hand out outline maps of the world to students. Ask the students to label the map with the 7 continents.
  2. Have students go online with their partners to look for where their endangered species live in the world.
  3. Ask students to mark these locations on their maps.
  4. After students have finished locating their endangered species, gather the students together and collect their maps.
  5. Using Google Earth, make placement markers of all the different locations the students marked on their maps. Save these locations as .kmz files for students to use in their final projects. Talk about the location and what differences they notice when using Google Earth as opposed to an outline map.

Homework /Assessment:

Students journal about what they learned about their endangered species in terms of location and environment. How are the animals affected by their environment?

Lesson 3:

Extra, Extra, Read all about Them! (Creating Information Flyers)

Project Objective:

  1. Students will use the information from their research to create information flyers.
  2. Students will have to determine what information is pertinent for their flyers in order to educate others about the endangered species that they have chosen.
  3. Students will show how human decisions and activities have had a profound impact on the physical and living environments of animals by examining the factors that positively or negatively affect the physical environment and its resources.


  1. Computers with internet access to http://kerpoof.com/.
  2. Blank paper and writing instruments.
  3. Previous research about endangered species.


  1. Teachers should create Kerpoof student accounts before beginning this lesson.
  2. Have students look over their Kidspiration or bubbl.us concept maps and tell them to use them to design and create an informational flyer to inform others about their endangered species. Discuss w hat is important to share with others about their enda ngered species.
  3. Students may have to do some more online research at this time. One of the partners can do this, while the other one starts thinking of the design and look of their flyer using Kerpoof.
  4. Students will use Kerpoof to create flyers with captions and pertinent information about their endangered species. They can roughly sketch their ideas on paper beforehand. With student accounts, students can save their work and further edit later on.
  5. Have students print out their flyers.


Students should look over their flyers and see if anything needs to be edited. Students should show these flyers to their families and ask them what message their flyers convey.


Students submit their informational f lyers and display on a bulletin board or throughout the school .

Lesson 4

Call to ACTION!   (PowerPoint Presentations and Final Reflections)

Project Objectives:

  1. Students present their findings to the class through a PowerPoint Presentation.
  2. Students evaluate the actions and decisions of humans in terms of the environment and how that has impacted the lives of animals.


  1. Scholastic Keys' MaxShow or PowerPoint or Impress (by http://openoffice.org/)


  1. Students work with their partners on preparing a PowerPoint presentation, which includes their concept maps, links to their informational flyers, and their research findings.
  2. After the presentations, students will discuss and write about how and why these endangered species share the same fate and what could and/or should be done to improve the situation.
  3. Students write reflections about their experiences with the project and what they have learned.


Students can generate a rubric together to assess and evaluate their PowerPoint presentations.

Renny Fong is currently the Technology Teacher at Public School 130 Manhattan, where he has taught for the past twelve years. He has taught kindergarten, fourth, and fifth grade. Renny received his B.A. from Columbia College in 1993 and his master's degree in Elementary Education from Teachers College, Columbia University in 1994. His honors include: TeachNet Grant Recipient (2009), Turning Technologies K-12 Grant Award Recipient (2008), Hewlett Packard Technology for Teaching Grant Initiative Recipient (2006), and Toshiba America Foundation Grantee (2006). His wife and his three-year-old son are his joy and inspiration.


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