Often, some of the best teachers of students are the students themselves. Peer mentoring is a very successful learning tool in many situations, and Inter-Grade or Inter-School Activities are ventures that capitalize on cooperative learning among and between students.

Inter-Grade or Inter-School Activities typically occur between grade levels in a given school or between two nearby schools with different grade levels. Through Operation RubyThroat, we envision several kinds of scenarios, a few of which are outlined below. For help on setting up your specific hummingbird inter-grade or inter-school activities, contact PROJECTS.

NOTE: Teachers and their student groups, individual students, and others who are registered participants with Operation RubyThroat get priority attention to all requests for information and assistance. To register, see How to Participate.

INTER-GRADE ACTIVITY #1: Biology Classes Teach Life Science Students

One of the best ways a student can learn a subject is to teach it to another student. As part of Operation RubyThroat, have your high school Biology One students prepare a lesson about hummingbirds to be taught to a junior high Life Science class. Break the biology students into groups of two or three and have each present some aspect of the life history of the Ruby-throated Hummingbird. This same strategy will work with the Life Science students making a visit to elementary school classes; however, junior high and high school students might have more difficulty teaching primary students because of the cognitive levels and shorter attention spans of children in grades K-3.

Horticulture Students Adopt Elementary Classes

High School horticulture students learn valuable skills about plants and gardening that they can share with younger students. In a real-time application of those skills, have your horticulture students implement Operation RubyThroat by adopting a nearby elementary school that needs a Hummingbird Garden. The hort students can design the garden, order the plants and then teach the elementary students to do the planting, watering, and other maintenance. (Remember, no sharp cutting tools should be used by the younger kids.) In this relationship, the horticulture students reinforce their learning by teaching it, the elementary students learn some practical skills, and the school gets its own Hummingbird Garden than can be used for Observational Activities.

NOTE: Please send descriptions and results (including photos) from your successful inter-grade or inter-school activities to Operation RubyThroat via PROJECTS.

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