Reflection: Intrinsic Motivation Life in the Big City- Can the Mountain Lion Survive? - Section 2: Engage


I always try to start my lessons with a simple question, photo, or object for the students to look at and question. It peaks their curiosity and allows them to be inquisitive about the item I am showing. In this case it is a photograph of a sick mountain lion. As soon as I showed the photo, several students raised their hands and had some sad looks on their faces. I told them that this was an opprotunity for them to ask questions about the photo and to write them down. Most of the students quickly started writing and I walked around to see what they wrote. Some said that the lion was sad or lonely, others wrote questions about what happened to him or who did this to him. Some other students asked what he was in (you can see the cage and also the meat that lured him in in the background.

Many teachers want to give students information right from the beginning- spoon feed it if you will. By starting lessons in this fashion, students are usually disengaged and not very curious about the phenomena. 

By starting a lesson with something that will Engage them, the students get excited and curious about what they will be learning and most of the time, they want to know more. 

As a side note- P22 is currently healthy and still thriving in the mountains of Griffith Park :)

  Peaking Curiosity at the Beginning of the lesson
  Intrinsic Motivation: Peaking Curiosity at the Beginning of the lesson
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Life in the Big City- Can the Mountain Lion Survive?

Unit 4: Ecosystems
Lesson 9 of 9

Objective: SWBAT Determine what factors have affected the lives of mountain lions living in the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area and what we can do to help keep them there.

Big Idea: Humans have had an impact on the lives of animals and their habitats. What has been done to change this and can we do more?

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