Which Tree Am I? (FBCEC)

Summary:

In this matching activity, participants will use brief written descriptions to identify some common Ozark trees. After learning characteristics to identify trees, participants will identify trees along the pavilion trail and the woodland edge trail.

Grade Level:

4 - 6

Recommended Setting:

Indoor or outdoor classroom and trails

Outdoor Activity:

No

Location:

Fred Berry Conservation Education Center, Yellville, AR

Contact:

Education Program Coordinator, 870-449-3484

Duration:

45 minutes - 1 hour

Suggested Number of Participants:

Up to 24

Special Conditions:

Weather permitting

Objectives:

  • Recognize common characteristics to identify trees.
  • Interpret descriptions to identify trees on the “tree trail.”
  • Learn about Ozark tree species.

Key Terms*:

Compound leaf

Simple leaf

Species

*See glossary for definations

Materials:

Laminated sheet with leaf characteristics

Laminated sheet with tree descriptions

Pencil/paper (numbered 1 - 10)

“Trees of Arkansas” by Dwight Moore

Background:

Several characteristics can help identify trees including leaf characteristics, bark, tree size and shape, fruits or seeds, flowers and habitat.

Procedure:

  1. Familiarize participants with tree identification characteristics from leaf handout and “Trees of Arkansas” by Dwight Moore.
  2. Quiz participants on leaf type (simple or compound) and other features used to identify trees, done with a classroom matching activity using illustrated or actual examples. Or lead participants in a bingo or scavenger game where they collect examples.
  3. To prepare, number selected trees along the pavilion trail and the woodland edge trail. Instruct participants to place the letter of the description (from handout) that best fits the tree next to the corresponding tree number on their paper.
  4. Check answers with the key. Optional: Prizes may be awarded to each team with no mistakes or the first team completed with the least mistakes, etc.

Review:

  • Name at least four trees native to the Ozarks.
  • Compare simple leaves to compound leaves.
  • Describe some identifying characteristics for a white oak tree.

Resources:

  • Hunter, Carl G (1989). Trees, Shrubs, & Vines, The Ozark Society Foundation Society.
  • Moore, Dwight M. (2004). Trees of Arkansas, Arkansas Forestry Commission.

Glossary:

Compound leaf – leaf that is divided into two or more distinct leaflets

 

Simple leaf – A leaf having one blade, or a lobed leaf in which the separate parts do not reach down to the midrib

 

Species – biological classification of plants and animals immediately below the genus level