Students from Helena’s Peak Gifted & Talented program are displaying their artwork and sharing their knowledge of animals throughout the ages this week at the Montana Historical Society.
The megafauna included in many of the projects reflects the large creatures included in the MHS Ice Age gallery, notes Marianne Baumeister, an instructor with the program. The students looked at the animal species as they are today, then compared them with earlier iterations to see how they adapted over time. Next, they predicted what the future might hold for each species.
“They researched five areas – natural history, diet, habitat range, reproductive care of the young, and migration,” Baumeister said. “Then they applied that knowledge for the future.”
The students also put together oral presentations that are available by scanning a QR code with a cell phone.
Students’ projects will rotate on display this week at MHS. Third, fourth and fifth grade students’ work is featured Monday through Thursday, when they’ll be replaced with the work of eighth, ninth and tenth graders. The sixth and seventh grades’ projects are on display at ExplorationWorks but only for family members.
It’s like a pop-up vendor, in that it will only be in place for one week at MHS,” said Molly Kruckenberg, MHS director. “We enjoy being a gathering place for the community, and to get students in our building to explore history.”
Jackson Reed, a third grader at Jefferson Elementary, worked on the current state of bald eagles. The 9-year-old said he’s a big fan of birds, so the project was a lot of fun.
“I did my best to make the eagle look like it’s swooping and catching fish from the stream,” Reed said. “I think in the future the world will be hotter, so they’ll probably change migration patterns and stay higher in the mountains.”
Recording his presentation for use with the QR code was easy, he added, but also a little frustrating.
“I have done it millions of times before, but it was really hard this time because we had to make it sound perfect. Otherwise nobody would hear it or know what I wanted to say,” Reed said.
The students’ work can be viewed through Saturday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Montana Historical Society, 225 No. Roberts St. in Helena.
For more information, contact Eve Byron, public information officer, at 406/444-6843 or firstname.lastname@example.org