Month: September 2012

5th Grade Quail Brainstorm Session

Earlier today I posted about how my 5th grade ELP class began the thinking process of raising quail and all the things that we might need to know about keeping them alive. You can read that blog post here.

I thought that it would be important to document all steps to this project we are unfolding. Tonight I was able to take time to compile all their questions that the students generated.

The first step to this project is to get the students thinking about quail. I don’t want this to be a project where we provide all answers and how to instructions. I want this project to be ran and operated by the kids. This will be theirs. They will own this journey and the end result. It is going to be beyond EPIC!

Today after we discussed an incubator and the surprise that Bus Bill dropped on us about purchasing eggs to test things out we gave students time to begin to brainstorm and think about what THEY think THEY need to know in order to raise quail.

We gave them four categories: quail, habitat, external factors, and cost. We left cost blank, but included it for the sake that they have to remember that we must find ways to fund this whole project.

Students chose a partner and with their partner brainstormed questions for about 9 minutes. After this time we had them pair up with another pair and share ideas to see if further ideas were generated. After about 15 total minutes of brainstorming we talked about their questions and class ended with them heading back to their schools.

Tomorrow we will investigate these topics and attempt to find some answers.

Here is the link to the Google Doc of all their questions typed up –

We would love for this to be a living breathing document. Please take time to check out their questions(they had some really good ones). Add some comments about some further things to think about. If you have suggestions, resources, more questions, interesting facts, etc. please leave a comment here, on the Google Doc, or email me at

This is not only a learning experience for my students, but for me as well. I love teaching. What a great opportunity we have before ourselves. This has potential to be something that will leave a lasting impression.

Thanks for reading and hope to hear from some of you!

P.S. 4th grade don’t worry, after the Eco-Meet you will be involved in this project as well and maybe even more!!!!


5th Grade Prepares Start of Bald Eagle Studies

Today in class we began our exploration into bald eagles. Well, we are in the realm. We are going to experiment with the daunting task of raising quail. We cannot raise eagle eggs so this is the next best thing. To start we are working with 29 eggs that the teachers will be trying to raise along with student support. The goal will be to raise and nurture the quail to the point of them laying eggs come spring when the students will be in charge of everything.

In the meantime students today brainstormed all the questions that we need to investigate. We have a huge list that will only grow. These questions will be shared soon. Through our investigation of our questions about quail we will begin to transform one of the school courtyards into a habitat for quail. This is project based learning at its very finest.

Students are going to be in charge of everything. I plan to post the whole project online soon(whenever I actually have some free time). This is going to be an amazing journey for all of us.

Last, as we build and prepare and test things out our goal is to get a camera up and running that will stream the entire process online. More details on this to follow as well.

The excitement is brewing. We have so many possibilities it is going to be tough to get it all done. As for now we are going to do our best to raise some of the finest quail here in Iowa!

Stay tuned for more information!

Don’t forget to check out the wiki(in sidebar) and sign up for our online project starting in January.