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There are hundreds more activities in Science Is...

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A HOME OF MANY HOMES

Every living creature has its own home in some part of the world

The environment is what's around you – human-built structures like houses and other buildings, but also plants, animals and their homes, the air you breathe, the water you drink, the land you walk on. How you describe your environment depends on how you want to look at things. For example, you can say that you live at 224 Pine Street; you can say you live in the United States; or you can say that you live on planet Earth.

Being "environmentally aware" means really looking at, thinking about, and caring for the big environment, the world around you, rather than taking it for granted.

Think about your home and how it fits into the larger environment of other homes.

Start with your home. Where do you live? Draw a picture of your house, showing all the rooms. Now draw a picture of all the things around your house – the other houses and buildings, the sidewalks, the roads, the trees, etc. Finally, draw a picture showing all the places you go in one week, like school, the shopping mall, the grocery store, the park, the sports field, etc. Use all three pictures together to describe where you live.

Next, look at another home. Choose a wild creature that might live near you, like a bird, a worm, a squirrel, or a deer. Draw a picture of what that animal's home might look like. Use your imagination. Where would the home be located? What would the home be made of? What would it look like? What kind of food might the animal have in its home? Compare your home with the animal's home. What do you both need in or around your home? What parts of the environment do you share?

Finally, build the bigger picture. Everyone sits in a circle. Place a natural object in the middle of the circle. What would ordinarily "fill in" the spaces around the object? What would be right next to it? Right underneath it? Directly above it? Further away, but still around it? Describe living and nonliving surroundings (e.g. tree, air, city). Everyone takes a turn at describing one aspect of the surroundings, but each person's contribution must be something new. The idea is to build layers, or circles, from the focal point. Do the same thing with a second object; discuss the layers that overlap or are in common with the first object.

Whenever you are out in a natural area, think of yourself as a guest in someone else's home. All plants and animals – even the tiniest – have their place in the natural world.

© SV Bosak, www.legacyproject.org

Science Is...

From Science Is...: A Source Book of Fascinating Facts, Projects and Activities by Susan V. Bosak. This classic bestseller is easy to use and filled with hundreds of tested activities and experiments in all areas of science, including the environment. Click here to find out more and get online ordering info for Science Is....

Materials
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Paper
Pencils
Small, natural objects
  (e.g. pine cone,
  snail shell, feather)

Connections
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Schools (science –
  environmental
  awareness, habitat;
  social studies)
Youth groups
Families

From

Science Is...

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