Saving Ontario Turtles

Saving Ontario Turtles: A Race Against Time

This teaching resource introduces the eight turtle species resident to Ontario and speaks to the human behaviours that puts six of these species are risk. Educators and students will learn about the importance of turtles in our culture, the turtle life cycle, turtle habitat, and what we all can do to protect Ontario turtles.

Ontario Curriculum connections include Life Systems, Earth and Space Systems, Data Management and Probability, Number Sense and Numeration, and Drama and Dance Strands variously for JK through 12. These lesson plans can also be adapted for adult learners.

Before You Begin: About These Lesson Plans

Learn how to prepare for teaching this unit; includes Ontario Curriculum Connections.

Info Sheet: Ontario Turtles

This resource provides valuable information for teachers and students regarding species at risk, the importance of turtles, turtle habitat and how to help save turtles.

Saving Ontario Turtles – A Race Against Time

Ages: 6+

This interactive presentation includes movie clips, colour images, and general information about eight Ontario turtle species. Learn how you can help save these species.

Activity One: Hooray for Habitat!

Ages: 5 to 8 years
Students investigate the importance of habitat in survival and protection of turtle species-at-risk.
Hook: Four Seasons + One!
Hands-on Activity: The Ideal Turtle Habitat
Role Play Activity: Turtle Seasons – A Year in the Life of a Turtle.

Activity Two: What Are the Odds?

Ages: 8 to 12
Students investigate the survival rates of turtles throughout various stages of life and the critical importance of human assistance in turtle survival.
Hook: Introduction to Odds
Hands-on Activity: Chances of Survival
Role Play Activity: Up Against the Odds.

Activity Three: Turtle Island

Ages: 8 to 12
Students investigate the interdependence of habitat components, importance of turtle habitat protection, and the similarities between human and turtle survival needs and traits
Hook: The Earth on Turtle’s Back (creation myth)
Role Play Activity: Recreating a Turtle Eco-System
Creative Writing Activity: Turtles at Risk Code of Conduct.

Activity Four: “We interrupt this broadcast…”

Ages: 14 to 18
Students investigate the critical difference we can all make in the survival of Ontario turtle species and increasing turtle population numbers.
Hook: The Turtle Brand
Interactive Activity: Ontario Turtles – SAR 101
Multi-Media Activity: Saving Ontario Turtles.

Show and Tell

Grade 2 students from Sir Richard W Scott School in Markham created turtle habitat picture books. See samples of their work.

These learning tools were produced in collaboration with the Renfrew County Stewardship Council and the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources.

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