View Full Version : 8th grade & wants hyper focused science

11-26-2013, 04:54 PM
The daughter has declared what she wants to do for science this year. There are some physics and chemistry things she has mentioned but were actually pretty standard. One area she really wants to focus on is biology but related to rats, bats and moths. Last year we covered the grade level anatomy using rats rather than the human model the public school used in grade 7. I may have her focus on animal behavior using rats as the model. She has a pack of rats and rat behavior is pretty well documented. Bats I am at a bit of a loss. Has anyone found some really good resources on bats? Moths I have not started looking at yet.
I was thinking of maybe finding some general zoology resources to supplement. Has anyone done anything this hyper focused for science in 8th grade?

11-26-2013, 08:04 PM
As she read The Bat Scientists (http://www.amazon.com/The-Bat-Scientists-Field-Series/dp/0547199562/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1385514192&sr=8-1&keywords=the+bat+scientists)? That's a great book and it has resources listed in the back - it's like a long article in the form of a picture book and is basically a middle school level book. Where do you live? After reading that book, I sort of wanted to go to Austin to see those bats! I would look into finding someone to partner with who's studying bats or maybe do some citizen scientist work on bats...

11-27-2013, 09:26 PM
Because I'm also raising a super-obsessive science nerd, my gears got going...
Physics of flight with bats and moths--maybe more bio-mechanics; comparative anatomy and evolution--comparing rats with bats to see reasons one flies and the other doesn't
Ecology (Bats)--Build a bat house (there are guides for it, though I'm not sure if the range is that far north), learn about their role in the ecosystem (pollinators, bug eaters, etc.), learn about their massive die off from white nose syndrome (the Smithsonian's been doing some good research on that)--so some good epidemiology and microbiology in there. More micro if you look into the parasites that have been introduced to control moth populations.
Of course entomology--get together a bug collection, or just a moth collection (there are over 160,00 species!)
Astronomy--just because she seems to like nothing but nocturnal animals!

Glancing through the books out there--books on a single animal like these tend to go from the kiddie books straight to grad-studies. There are a handful of good ones in between, particularly field guide-type books.

12-31-2013, 07:13 PM
My sil is a wildlife biologist and done quite a bit of bat trapping and studies on bats. If you send me your email - thru private message - and I can forward your request to her. She used to go to schools and talk about bats so I know she's got some education materials.