Monarchs, Mountains, and Moisture
Teaching Suggestions
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Monarch biologist Dr. Lincoln Brower describes when, where and how the butterflies obtain the water that they need for winter survival. He illustrates the story with his images from the sanctuaries in Mexico.

Driving Question
When, where, and how do monarchs obtain the water they need to survive the winter in Mexico?





Instructional Ideas

1. Preview photos, predict ideas, and pose questions.
Take a picture walk through the images before reading. Have students predict possible words and ideas they might expect to read based on the slideshow title and details they see in the photos. Invite them to share questions and then ask:

  • When, where and how do you think monarchs get the water they need to survive the winter in Mexico?

2. Take notes as you read the text.
As a class read through the pages of the slideshow together, stopping occasionally to spotlight key ideas and ask questions. Encourage students to jot down words, phrases and questions sparked by the information and images.

3. Analyze the graph and summarize key points.
What does the precipitation graph reveal?

4. Capture words and synthesize understanding with poetry.
Just as the mountains of Mexico capture moisture that monarchs need for survival, have students capture key words that reveal the main ideas and significant details. Revisit each of the images in the slideshow and challenge students to write poetic phrases that convey what they discovered. When done, encourage them to read aloud their new poetic version of the slideshow.




Mountains in Mexico where Monarch Butterflies Overwinter
Monarchs, Mountains and Moisture


Graph: Moisture at Monarch Butterfly Overwintering Area in Mexico
Precipitation Graph


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