Teachers' Notes
Where to site a nesting box for owls

This activity focuses on making decisions, and has clear links to Geography, Literacy and opportunities will arise for some mathematics extension activities. It is suitable for pupils aged 9-11 working in pairs or small groups. Younger pupils could also use these tasks if given adult support.

The owl nesting box activity is in several parts, and to get the most from them pupils should work through them sequentially.

Glossary 
This vocabulary extension activity presents pupils with a list of words or phrases that they will meet in later tasks. Pupils should research the meanings and write simple definitions. This sheet can either be filed in online and then printed (File: Print) or downloaded (as an Acrobat PDF file) and completed using pen or pencil. This could be undertaken as a homework task.
Opportunities exist for teaching pupils how to arrange lists of words alphabetically.

Explore the map
Before pupils begin to explore the map independently teachers should talk to the children about factors that will enable owls to feed, breed and thrive.
The interactive map has several hot spots each providing some basic information about the location.
The grid lines on the map are 1km apart.

Older pupils should be able to use coordinates to refer to positions on the map.
If you have cookies enabled you can show or hide the coordinates:  displayed hidden
(takes effect when map next loaded)
Older pupils should be able to use coordinates to refer to positions on the map.
Using the glossary definitions, pupils should explore the map and begin to make decisions about possible sites for nest boxes. They should be encouraged to make lists of good and less good places for nesting owls, and to provide reasons for their decisions in note form. Pupils working in pairs or small groups can discuss their ideas first.

Where I will site a nesting box for owls
In this final task pupils access further information about owls and environmental factors influencing successful breeding. They expand their written notes from the previous task and, with the support of a writing frame, explain where they will position a nesting box giving reasons for their decisions. Pupils are required to make decisions about:
  • The species of owl
  • A suitable place to site a nesting box
  • An unsuitable place to site a nesting box

This sheet can either be filed in online and then printed (File: Print) or downloaded (as an Acrobat PDF file) and completed using pen or pencil.