About the Curriculum:
The Bosque Education Guide is a resource book of background information, activities, curriculum suggestions, and references to help classroom teachers and non-formal educators teach others (primary/Kindergarten through 12th grade students) about the bosque. The Guide is a newly released major revision of the popular curriculum to teach about the Middle Rio Grande Valley ecosystem. The new edition is 621 pages and has activities for elementary through high school students.
A major component of the guide is the River Model activity, in which students set up a paper and cloth model of the river valley, placing plants and animals in the appropriate environments to show the bosque ecosystem as it was before major human alteration, then changing the pieces around to show how humans have changed things in the last century. Finally, students conduct restoration projects on the model to see how land managers can maintain as much of the biodiversity and natural processes of the ecosystem with out compromising the safety of our communities. The Guide has many activities to be done with students on field trips as well as in the classroom or school yard.
Topics include: the geology of the valley, surface and groundwater, the demands on the river's water budget, natural history information and human influence, several mapping activities and two webquests. Some of the skills emphasized are journaling, working with maps and graphs, and collecting oral histories. The final chapter helps teachers plan service learning projects with their students. A substantial background section and appendices including correlation's to the New Mexico education standards round out the book.
Workshop participants receive the curriculum and additional teaching kit materials. These workshops are offered at no cost to educators through funding from the US Fish and Wildlife Service's Bosque Initiative Grant. Co-sponsored by the NM Museum of Natural History & Science and the Rio Grande Nature Center.