Ipods and iPads are not just for classroom activities. We recently spent time at Outdoor School (ODS) for a few of our school districts and found that with the right apps and fully charged batteries a field study session about the food chain can become a fun collaborative project.
In the past we have done field study sessions with geocaching, photography and geolocations, panoramas, and mapping skills but as field study leaders we wanted to change it up a bit. One of the best things about being in the "wild", we have nature to draw from, covering consumers, producers, and decomposers for our region of Oregon. In the past, students had done paper/pencil scavenger hunts looking for the evidence of parts of the food chain. We wanted to modify this project and require that the students process this information collaboratively in more than one way. Our task for the students was to create a short food chain video which was to include a consumer, producer, decomposer, title, and credit photo.
Here's how it went. After a brief group discussion (less than 10 minutes) on a review of the food chain, we set off in groups of 2 or 3 students with one iPod Touch to take photos of evidence of each of the three parts of the food chain. In 15 minutes we returned with photos of consumers, producers, and decomposers that can be found at camp, as well as a nice scenery shot for our title slide and a group shot for the credit slide.
Once we returned to the lodge we had about 25 minutes left. Groups worked together to label their photos with Phonto and pull them in to 30 Hands to create and narrate their movie. These were both brand new apps for the students. In less than an hour, we had finished products, simple 10 to 20 second videos about the food chain at camp. These were fun to upload and share with their teachers once we returned to the office. I heard one classroom held a viewing party!