Nature Trail Tour Guide
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Grade: 4th - 6th grade
Class: Science
Author: Lori Bishop
Ballston Spa Central School
NYS Content Area Standard:
Math, Science & Technology:
Standard 4: Science
NYS Interdisciplinary Standard:
English Language Arts:
Standard 2: Language for Literary Response and Expression
Adirondack Curriculum Content Area:
Natural History
Performance Indicators:


  • Science: Life Sciences
  • Language Arts: Listening & Speaking
  • Like Skills: Working with Others
Keywords: nature trail
The Challenge:
Investigative Question or Issue: How have plants and animals adapted to living in different environments?

Challenge originally created by Lori Bishop & Karen VanAlstine.

Teachers will want to ensure that students have ready access to the various types of Northern Forest habitats/environments mentioned in this challenge. Local Nature Trails, Environmental Centers, and/or Parks may be a good place to stage this challenge especially as they may permit repeat visits over a period of time to record observations and gather longitudinal data. It may also be advisable to ask the staff of such a center to visit with your students to show them how to conduct a guided tour. The teacher will also want to spend time helping students understand the responsibilities of the different roles to which they may be assigned.

The Challenge:

Work in groups to create a ‘Tour Guide’ for a local nature trail or park.

Distribute and go over Student Handout

A Northern Forest Partnership challenge

Quality Standards:
  • The challenge is completed at the end of the allotted time
  • The tour script contains correct spelling and punctuation.
  • All focus questions are addressed accurately and thoroughly for all three sites
  • The tour is informative - it gives visitor important information about the plants and animals of the site
  • The tour is interesting - the tour presenters use different tones of voice and speak to listeners directly
  • The tour presenters point out specific connectionsbetween plant/animal adaptations and the types of environment at each site.
Product Quality Checklist
Print This Checklist
Standard/Criteria: Points Possible: Points Awarded:

Challenge completed at the end of six weeks


The script contains correct spelling and punctuation.


 Three different habitats are documented


All focus questions are addressed at each site


Easy to understand-visitors can accurately interpret information given by listening to your presentation.


All information about plants and animals is accurate.


Connections are made between plant/animal adaptations and environment.


Team members' names are on all written work.


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