Biology of My Backyard – Day 4

Today was our last day of summer camp. We learned all about what we could see in the sky in our backyard. We even went to the Moody Planetarium and saw a planetarium show.

We then created birds using different adaptations.

What wings will your bird have?

What will your bird look like?

What beak will your bird have?

What will your bird's feathers look like?

Pom Poms for feathers!

Almost finished!

Working hard.

Wow! That bird has long legs!

What will you name your bird?

Next, we went on a nature hunt to look for some of the things we had been talking about all week. We found soaring birds, feathers, insects, and even a jackrabbit!

Look a nest!

We saw lots of cool things!

What do you see?

We had so much fun learning about insects, mammals, birds and space! Hopefully we will see all the campers again soon!

Junior Einsteins – Day 4

Today was our last day of summer camp.  We learned about the role of a biologist, animal habitats, and camouflage!

We started the morning by matching animals to their correct habitats, and then looking at the skeletons of different critters:

Where does a polar bear live?

What does a starfish feel like?

Wow, that polar bear has some sharp teeth!

That's much bigger than my skull!

Holy cow, that's a big cow!

Is it smooth or rough?

Next, we visited the Natural Science Research Lab where Heath showed us all the different insects, mammals, and birds the biologists study:

Those beetles are bigger than my hand!

Lions, and tigers, and bears, oh my!

Checking out the bald eagle!

Birds and mammals everywhere

Next, we learned all about camouflage and how animals blend in to their habitats to avoid being eaten

Can you find the frog?

We then went outside to see which worms camouflage into the Lubbock landscape

Find the worms!

Can you see them?

To finish up the day, we headed over to the Ranching Heritage Center for a nature walk and scavenger hunt:

Do you see something green?

Can you draw a tree?

Finding something old...

Finish your drawings

We had so much fun all week learning about space, animals, dinosaurs, and chemistry! Hopefully we’ll see all the campers again soon! 🙂

Biology of My Backyard – Day 3

Greetings!  Today we learned all about birds, their adaptations, and their unique beaks!

We started by reviewing mammals using puzzles:

Piecing together the mammals of Texas

Working hard

What type of bird skull do you think this is?

Next, Heath was kind enough to show us around the Natural Science Research Lab and teach us all about awesome insects, birds, and mammals!

Showing us the locations of where all the mammals in the NSRL were collected

Look at all those mammals!

Make sure you look on the bottom of the shelves, too!

Looking closely at all the insects

Those are some big beetles!

Are these zebras the same, or different?

Brittany showing us the birds in the Explorium

We finished the day with learning what beaks are used for eating very specific foods. Birds have beaks like fish nets, pliers, eye droppers, and tweezers.

Which beak is best?

What beak should we use for eating floating plants?

What beak is best for digging out worms?

Searching for bird food

Picking "caterpillars" off a log

Fishing for plant food

Brittany threw marshmellows in the air to represent flying insects

Digging deep for more worms

Hmm what beak works best?

Writing down some observations

What bird has a beak like tweezers?

Ants on a log, yum!

Picking out the last of the worms

Afterwards, we ventured outside to learn all about hazards birds encounter everyday. Things like power lines, pesticides, other animals, and buildings are all things that can harm birds in their everyday lives!

We have lots of fun today. Tomorrow we will finish up with a biology planetarium show and nature walk!

Biology of My Backyard – Day 2

Today we learned all about mammals!  We discussed the characteristics of mammals–body hair, ability to regulate their own body temperature, give live birth.

Reviewing the insect life cycle from yesterday

Feeling the teeth in a cow skull

What sharp teeth you have! (polar bear skull)

Learning the differences between carnivores, herbivores, and omnivores

Carnivore or herbivore?

Comparing the bob cat skull to the cougar

Learning all about molars, canines, and incisors

We then learned about camouflage, so we acted like birds looking for worms (bits of string). We quickly learned it was easier to find the bright colors instead of browns and yellows 🙂

Where are the worms?

Still searching...

We finished the day by discussing habitats and learning what basic needs animals have in order to survive.

Where do these animals live?

Putting animals in their correct habitat

Everyone was given an animal to build a habitat for… this varied from monkeys to iguanas to toucans!

Creating our own habitats

Future biologists building habitats

Lush rainforest for the toucan

African savannah for the lion

Busy builders

Habitats almost complete

Great habitat for an elephant... even a cave!

Jungle complete!

Lots of fun with skulls and habitats! Tomorrow is all about birds!

Biology of My Backyard – Day 1

Hey everyone!  Sorry for the delay on the post, but here are some awesome photos from our day of learning all about incredible insects!

We started the afternoon by learning the parts of an insect.  What better way to do that than dress Natalie up like a bee?  🙂

A true bee isn't complete without compound eyes!

How many legs does an insect have?














We then went outside with our compound eyes to see like a bug sees, and search for some bugs of our own!

Are there any bugs outside the Museum?

Brittany took us in the Explorium to learn all about the roles of bees in the hive














We ventured back outside to learn how bees communicate by flying in different patterns. Here we are working together to fly in a figure 8!

All our worker bees flying in a figure 8!







Next, we learned how bees get food and tell other bees where to find food. We traveled long distances from the hive to the flower field in search of nectar (sugar cubes)!

Busy worker bees in search of nectar

Searching the flower field for nectar













To finish up the day, everyone was asked to invent a bug of their own. They were all very colorful and creative!

Creating a bug from scratch

Those are some serious antennae!

Quite a colorful critter!

Safely securing all insect appendages

Well, that looks the friendliest of the creepy crawlers

Hmm... what color should I make my bug?

Put those insects together!

Some extravagant wings!

Workin' hard

Awesome wings!