Grade 3 Comprehensive Curriculum Links Unit 6

Louisiana Studies

Activity 4: Endangered Animals (GLEs: 1, 2, 9, 11, 61, 62)

Materials Listsources to locate previously classified endangered or threatened animals in Louisiana, poster board, Endangered Animals Report Rubric BLM, road map of Louisiana, yarn, four or five pieces of legal size paper folded into thirds to make a brochure

Teacher Note:  This activity may take two instructional periods.

Write the words endangered species on the board. Have students brainstorm (view literacy strategy descriptions) what they think this means. Using a T-Chart graphic organizer (view literacy strategy descriptions), write students’ ideas on the left-hand side. Read appropriate teacher selected material (book, article, Internet site, etc.) about endangered species that have recovered. After reading the material, ask students to give a definition of endangered species and record responses on the right hand side of the T-Chart. Tell students that while some plants and animals are not considered endangered, it is likely that they may become endangered in the foreseeable future.  These plants and animals are called “threatened” species.

Inform students that they will be researching an endangered animal that has recovered. Model how students are to gather resources and hand out the Endangered Animals Report Rubric BLM and explain what is expected.  Offer a wealth of information about endangered animals from all over the world; however, students should use those with a Louisiana connection.

For a specific list of endangered or threatened animals in Louisiana, visit the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries web site. Once this homepage is opened, click on the Experience Wildlife tab which will take you to the Threatened and Endangered Wildlife in Louisiana. 

  • Instruct students to use the Internet and/or printed materials such as books or magazines to locate examples of previously classified endangered or threatened animals that no longer have that designation.

  • Compile a class list of student-generated questions that they would like answered on endangered animals. Focus on animals of Louisiana that have recovered.

  • Form two- or three-member groups and direct students to develop a display using poster boards or display boards of a formerly endangered animal that is no longer endangered.  Ask students to also explain why that animal is no longer endangered and/or some actions that may have caused them to recover.  For example, strict laws protecting the bald eagle and changes in use of pesticides have contributed to this animal no longer being classified as endangered.

  •  The display should include a written report, pictures, and could include a map of Louisiana showing the area of the state where that particular animal is most frequently found.

  • Include how technology advances have helped the recovery process. To avoid repetition, student groups should select an animal with teacher approval or the teacher should assign an animal to each group.

  • Students will give a short oral report about their display to the class. The teacher should use these reports as a foundation for class discussion to ensure all major points are covered. Discussion questions include the following:

    • What are some animals in Louisiana that have become endangered? Threatened?

    • What has been done specifically in Louisiana to help these animals get off the endangered list?

If the teacher would like to give the groups of students a choice of making a poster or a brochure, a brochure about the animal could be made as well. All of the information that was to be included on the poster can be part of the brochure instead. After the presentations, a map of Louisiana could be displayed on a bulletin board.  The student brochures can be placed around the map with a line made of yarn spanning from the brochure to the area on the map where the animal dwells. 


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Vermilion Parish Schools (Louisiana)

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