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Marmots (Groundhogs)
Of the World

 

Subjects

  • Arts & Humanities
    --Language Arts
  • Educational Technology
  • Mathematics
    --Statistics
  • Science
    --Life Sciences
    ----Animals
  • Social Studies
    --Geography

Grade

  • 3-5
  • 6-8
  • 9-12
  • Advanced

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Brief Description

Use a graphic organizer to organize groundhog species information.

Objectives

Students will

  • use an online resource for research purposes.
  • use a graphic organizer to organize information.

Keywords

groundhog, marmot, woodchuck, graphic organizer

Materials Needed

 

Lesson Plan

In this activity, students learn about 14 species of marmots around the world. One of those species is the woodchuck (also known as the groundhog), which ranges from the southeastern United States to Alaska.

Introduce a Marmots of the World graphic organizer. The organizer includes the following column headings:

  • Scientific (Latin) Name
  • Common Name
  • Habitat (where in the world the marmot lives)
  • Number of Active Months Each Year (number of months not in hibernation)
  • Number of Pups in a Litter (average number)
  • Number of Calls Made (number of different sounds scientists have documented)
  • One More Fact of Interest

Provide students with a link to the Web site: Marmots of the World at
http://www.marmotburrow.ucla.edu/marmots.html

Alternative: Print the pages about each marmot and staple the pages together to create a booklet. Create a learning center activity. Students use information in the booklet to complete the graphic organizer.

Students use the Marmots of the World Web page (or printed pages from the site) to complete the graphic organizer. If students cannot find a piece of information in the materials provided, they should simply note N/A (not available) in the appropriate column on the graphic organizer.

Alternate idea: Instead of having students collect information for all 14 species, ask them to select just 10 species to include in their graphic organizers.

 

Assessment

Following is the information students should include on their graphic organizers for each marmot species:

  • Marmota baibacina -- gray or Altai marmot -- alpine areas of Altai mountains, Central Asia -- 5 months -- 6 pups -- 1 call
  • Marmota bobac -- bobac or steppe marmot -- the steppes of southern Russia, Kazakhstan to Central Europe -- 5-1/2 months -- 5+ pups -- 1 call
  • Marmota camtschatica -- black-capped marmot -- Eastern Siberia and Kamtchatica peninsula -- 3-1/2 months -- 4 pups -- 1 call
  • Marmota caudata -- long-tailed marmot; golden or red marmot -- alpine meadows in Hindu Kush, Karakoram, and Tien Shen mountains of Central Asia -- 4-1/2 months -- NA -- 1 call
  • Marmota himalayana -- Himalayan marmot -- Himalayan mountains of Nepal; also India, Tibet -- NA -- NA -- NA
  • Marmota marmota -- alpine marmot -- Alps, Carpathians, Pyrenees, Tatra mountains of Europe -- 5-1/2 months -- 2 to 2-1/2 pups -- 2 calls
  • Marmota menzbieri -- Menzbier's marmot -- Western Tien Shan mountains, Kazakhstan -- 4 months -- 2-1/2 pups -- 1 call
  • Marmota sibirica -- tarvaga, tarbagan or Mongolian marmot -- Mongolia, Manchuria, Transbaikal -- 6 months -- 3-4 pups (7 pups at one site only) -- 1 call
  • Marmota broweri -- Alaska, Brower's or Brooks Range marmot -- Brooks Range mountains, Alaska -- 4-1/2 months -- NA -- 2 calls
  • Marmota caligata -- hoary marmot -- Cascade and northern Rocky mountains to Alaska -- 4-1/2 months -- 3 pups -- 4 calls
  • Marmota flaviventris -- yellow-bellied marmot -- Western North America (U.S. Rockies, Sierra Nevadas) -- NA -- 4+ pups -- 3 calls
  • Marmota monax -- woodchuck or groundhog -- Southeastern U.S. to Alaska -- 7 months -- 4 pups -- 2 calls
  • Marmota olympus -- Olympic marmot -- Olympic Peninsula, Washington -- 4-1/2 months -- 4 pups -- 4 calls
  • Marmota vancouverensis -- Vancouver Island marmot -- Vancouver Island (Canada) -- NA -- NA -- 5 calls

Lesson Plan Source

Education World

National Standards

LANGUAGE ARTS: English
GRADES K - 12
NL-ENG.K-12.2 Reading for Understanding
NL-ENG.K-12.7 Evaluating Data
NL-ENG.K-12.8 Developing Research Skills

MATHEMATICS: Connections
GRADES Pre-K - 12
NM-CONN.PK-12.3 Recognize and Apply Mathematics in Contexts Outside of Mathematics

SCIENCE
GRADES 5 - 8
NS.5-8.3 Life Science
GRADES 9 - 12
NS.9-12.3 Life Science

SOCIAL SCIENCES: Geography
GRADES K - 12
NSS-G.K-12.1 The World in Spatial Terms
NSS-G.K-12.2 Places and Regions

TECHNOLOGY
GRADES K - 12
NT.K-12.1 Basic Operations and Concepts
NT.K-12.5 Technology Research Tools

Find more lessons for teaching about Groundhog Day on Education World's February Holiday Page.

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Updated 1/05/2015