Habitat Inventory at Windmill Sites
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Grade: 11th - 12th grades
Class: Science
Author: Gary Wilson
NYS Content Area Standard:
Math, Science & Technology:
Standard 4: Science
Standard 6: Interconnectedness: Common Themes
NYS Interdisciplinary Standard:
English Language Arts:
Standard 1: Language for Information and Understanding
Standard 4: Language for Social Interaction
Adirondack Curriculum Content Area:
Natural History
Keywords: dichotomous key, windmills
The Challenge:
Investigative Question or Issue: What are the wildlife habitat components present at the proposed Barton Mines windmill site?

Teachers will need to instruct students on plant identification using a dichotomous key prior to this activity.  Materials for sampling habitats will need to be constructed, one set per group.  

The Challenge:

Students will investigate the existant habitat components of the immediate area of the proposed placement of windmills on the Barton Mines property. Students will produce a poster showing the habitat components.  This poster will be displayed in the Tannery Pond Community Center.

Students will satisfy NYS standards in both science, math, and technology, and English. Language Arts as they research sampling methods, conduct the actual habitat sampling on site, record digital images of habitat, and create a final poster display of results.

Product of the 2008 ACP Biodiversity Workshop, funded by a grant from the New York Biodiversity Research Institute.

Quality Standards:
  • Research  and computer lab time is used constructively.
  • Each student will write a description of sampling methods, and habitat components (typed).
    • Takes an active role in the habitat sampling.
    • Creates a data collection sheet including all components of habitat.
    • Summarizes habitat component survey on data sheet.
    • Create a Graph of habitat components  to be displayed on poster.
  • Poster construction containing title, research methods, GPS location of site, graphs of habitat components, digital pictures of site, and concluding statement concerning habitat qualty
Product Quality Checklist
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Standard/Criteria: Points Possible: Points Awarded:

Utilizes research time in computer lab.


One page description of sampling methods and habitat components


Data Collection sheet created


Student takes active role in habitat sampling


Habitat component data summarized in graph



  • Title and GPS location shown
  • Research methods displayed
  • Pictures of site and components
  • Graphs of each habitat component
  • Concluding statement concerning habitat quality typed


Oral Presentation:

  • Student presentation of poster is clear and planned
  • Each student has a role in the presentation


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