This online zoology class for 5th–8th graders introduces students to the study of animal life. Humans have been intricately tied to animals throughout our history. By studying animals, students will develop an understanding of how to interact with other living things that share this planet with us. This course begins with a discussion of the characteristics all animals share, the ways animals are classified, animal behavior, and life cycles. Two weeks will be spent on each animal group, including invertebrates, fishes, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals. The final topics include habitats and conservation.
Who should apply?
Zoology is for curious students in grades 5th–8th who have a strong desire to understand how and why different animals are designed and behave, and to learn how animals interact with humans, other animals, and their environments.
- High speed, broadband Internet
- headset and microphone (for live sessions)
- Streaming video capabilities to watch recorded lectures
A typical zoology week will begin with a live class on Monday at 1 pm. The live classes are usually game-based reviews of topics from the previous week and often an introduction to the coming week. Although it is always best if students attend the live classes, I will post the recording of the class so that students who can’t attend can watch later. Lessons will be posted Tuesday through Friday, and will include an online introduction as well as a section to read in the book Animal. I use a lot of audio and video recordings to help students learn the correct pronunciation of new terms as well as to reinforce content from the book. Since this course can be used as ½ credit of life science, a few additional writing assignments and projects will be given to students in grades 7 and 8.
Evaluation and Feedback
I use “learning checks” at the end of most lessons to assure both the student and the teacher that students understand the concepts presented in the lessons. Many of the learning checks are automatically graded by the computer. For the essay questions and projects, I generally grade every day, sending feedback to the students to help them understand questions they may have missed.
I welcome any and all communication from parents. I want to partner with you in your student’s education, so if at any time you have questions or concerns, my virtual door is open. I will send monthly progress reports to let you know how your student is doing in Zoology.