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Name: __________________________ Subject: Language Arts
Teacher Name: ___________________ Date: ___________________

 

No Bats in My Town

 

Introduction:  
  The mayor of Middleville, located in middle America, is in quite a predicament. At the edge of town there is a cave which is inhabited by bats. There have been emails and letters sent to her office, and editorials in the local newspapers from people who are feeling threatened by the bats that live in the cave.

People all over town are having arguments about the bats. Some are afraid of vampire bats coming to suck their blood, some believe they pose a health problem, and others think bats are just plain spooky to have around town. Those people want to destroy the bats and close the cave up completely so other bats don't return.

Environmentalists are arguing for the bats, saying they pose no health concerns and in fact are good for the environment.

Mayor Maybee cannot make up her mind what to do about the bats. She really wants to do the right thing for the community, but she is not sure who to believe, and therefore, she is not sure what to do about the bat problem.

Because she doesn't know what to do, she has contacted several consultation firms across the United States who have teams of experts who might help her make a good decision for the community. They will help her to decide the Big Question: Are bats good or bad for the community?
Task:  
  You and your consultation team members have your own area of expertise. You each need to do research according to the job to which you have been assigned. Each person on your consultation team becomes an expert in the following areas:

Biologist
Ecologist
Vampire-ologist
Myth-Buster

The final product from your consultation team will be a report of your findings. It will be written as a business letter convincing the mayor whether to keep the bats in the community or get rid of them. Your letter will support your recommendations with conclusions from the facts you have learned during your research.
Process:  
  Step 1 First you'll be assigned to a consultation team of 4 experts.

Step 2 You and your consultation team members will be given a few minutes to negotiate and decide on what job each of you will be in charge of doing. Keep in mind that each and every job is important in this research!

Step 3 Once you know your job, then you will find other experts from other consultation teams. Your research will be done together.

Step 4 You will need to keep notes using the graphic organizer found on the evaluation page. These notes should include all the facts that you find in your area of expertise, keeping in mind to focus on the facts which will be included in your final report.
You will be reporting to Mayor Maybee about your findings, answering the question, "Should bats remain in the community of Middletown?"

Step 5 Begin your research! Find experts in your field and a workstation and get to reading the sites on the web or the books available from the library. All sources have lots of information for you.

Sites for ALL experts These sites can be investigated by anyone because there is all sorts of information that might have to do with any area of study.


The Process

Step 1 First you'll be assigned to a consultation team of 4 experts.

Step 2 You and your consultation team members will be given a few minutes to negotiate and decide on what job each of you will be in charge of doing. Keep in mind that each and every job is important in this research!

Step 3 Once you know your job, then you will find other experts from other consultation teams. Your research will be done together.

Step 4 You will need to keep notes using the graphic organizer found on the evaluation page. These notes should include all the facts that you find in your area of expertise, keeping in mind to focus on the facts which will be included in your final report.
You will be reporting to Mayor Maybee about your findings, answering the question, "Should bats remain in the community of Middletown?"

Step 5 Begin your research! Find experts in your field and a workstation and get to reading the sites on the web or the books available from the library. All sources have lots of information for you.

Sites for ALL experts These sites can be investigated by anyone because there is all sorts of information that might have to do with any area of study.
Movie: Bats

Where in the World Do Bats Live? 1
Where do bats live? 2

Bat Photos

FAQ about Bats 1
FAQ about Bats 2

Internet Hunt: Bats

Bat Facts

Missouri Bats



Biologist
What is a biologist? According to the Princeton Review Career Profiles,
"Biologists study humans, plants, animals, and the environments in which they live. They may conduct their studies--human medical research, plant research, animal research, environmental system research--at the cellular level or the ecosystem level or anywhere in between."

Bats are Mammals

Bat Wings

What kinds of food do they eat?

If they fly, why aren't bats called birds?

Bat Fast Facts
Bat Conservation International (Go To "Bats, Rabies, and West Nile")

Bats for Kids: Site for Biologist or Ecologist

Howstuffworks "How Bats Work"

Bat Anatomy: Biologist

What do bats look like?

Bats and Rabies

Ask a biologist a question

What Good Are Bats? Ranger Rick Article

Bat Babies

Types of Bats

Bat Information

How Are Bats Like You?

Flying Bats

Bats Are Good for the Environment

Ecologist
What is an ecologist? According to Kids Do Ecology Site, ecologists study the interaction of organisms with their environment. Their jobs are very related to biologists.

Learn more about ecology

Bats for Kids: Site for Biologist or Ecologist

Bat Caves: Ecologist

Bats and Echolation

Bat Senses

Bat Echolocation explained
Threats and Conservation of Bats

NOVA Online: Bat Cave Read about an explorer's adventure going into a cave filled with bats. Includes a few photos.

To the bat cave...

Country Bat and the City Bat

Bats, Range, Habitats and Conservation

Vampire-ologist
What is a vampire-ologist? This is the expert who learns all about vampire bats.

Vampire Bats

Bat Reputation

The Truth About Bats

Vampire Bats and links to other species of bats

Vampire Bats

What kinds of food do they eat?

Vampire Bats Information from Enchanted Learning

Why Are Bats So Scary?

Should We Protect Bats?

Myth-Buster
What is a myth-buster? This is the expert who will disprove any myths about bats. Myths are stories that have nothing to do with facts or the fact world.
Bat Myths

Bat Facts and Fiction

Bat Mythology 1

Biology and Mythology 2

Fact and Fantasy about Bats

The Truth About Bats

What are the myths about bats?

How do bats help humans?

How can I help save bats?

What Good Are Bats?

Myths and Bat Fears


Step 6 After all your research is done, you will return to your consultation team. There you will discuss the facts you have found with the others on your team. When your team decides what to tell Mayor Maybee, you will construct a business letter including the recommendations you will make to her about keeping or getting rid of the bats in Middletown.
Each of your recommendations must include supporting facts from each of the four experts. There must be facts about mythology, vampires, biology and ecology included in your letter.
Sample Business Letter



Evaluation:  
  Graphic Organizer for Notetaking. Include: Your area of expertise, your name, and your reasons to keep the bats, and your reasons to get rid of the bats.

Letter-Writing
Persuasive No Bats in My Town Consultation Report Letter Form
Student Name: ________________________________________
Advanced + 3 Proficient +2 Needs Revision +1 Pts.
The heading is complete
with the logo, address, city
and state, and date. All are
placed in the correct place
and order. The heading is mostly
complete There is no heading
The inside address is
correctly completed with
the name of the person,
his/her position, address,
city and state. All are placed
in the correct order. The inside address is
mostly correct There is no inside
address
A comma separates the
city and state and the
day of the month
with the year in both the
heading and the inside
addresses At least one comma
separates one of the
parts of the heading and
inside addresses No commas are used in
the heading or inside
addresses
A colon follows the
greeting A comma follows the
greeting No punctuation is used
in the greeting
The body of the letter
utilizes the information
from the graphic
organizer in a logical
and personal way. The body of the letter
uses some of the
information from the
graphic organizer to
write the letter The body of the letter
does not reflect the task
Expressive adjectives,
verbs, and adverbs make
the body of the letter
enjoyable to read. There is
voice and fluency in the letter. Some adjectives, verbs
and adverbs are used to
write the letter. Some voice
and fluency. Sentences are simple
with little to no use of
adjectives or little or no
voice or fluency.
The envelope is
complete with the return
address and the address
of the person to whom
the letter is written and
uses correct punctuation and
placement The envelope is mostly
correct with correct
punctuation and
capitalization. Placement
is correct. The envelope would not
be accepted by the post
office because of
inadequate information
Total Points
Persuasive Bat Consultation Letter - Content Assessment



Name: ________________________
Criteria Pts.

4 3 2 1
Position Statement Position is clearly stated and consistently maintained. Clear references to the issue(s) are stated. Position is clearly stated and consistently maintained. References to the issue(s) at hand are missing. Position is stated, but is not maintained consistently throughout work. Statement of position cannot be determined.

____
Supporting Information Evidence clearly supports the position; evidence is sufficient. Evidence clearly supports the position; but there is not enough evidence. Argument is supported by limited evidence. Evidence is unrelated to argument. ____
Organization Structure of work is clearly developed. Thoughts are sequenced in a logical manner. Structure developed reasonably well, but lacks clarity. Some disorganization. Some attempt to structure the argument has been made, but the structure is poorly developed. Little organization. There is a total lack of structure. ____
Tone (voice) Of Letter Tone (voice) is consistent and enhances persuasiveness. Tone enhances persuasiveness, but there are inconsistencies. Tones does not contribute to persuasiveness. Tone is inappropriate to purpose. ____
Sentence and Paragraph Structure Sentence and paragraphing structure is correct. Sentence or paragraph structure is generally correct. Some awkward sentences do appear. Work contains structural weaknesses and grammatical errors. Work pays little attention to proper sentence structure.
Punctuation & Capitalization Punctuation, capitalization, spelling and grammar are correct. There is one error in punctuation, capitalization, spelling and/or grammar. and/or grammar. There are four or more errors in punctuation, capitalization, spelling and/or grammar.
Total----> ____

Persuasive Bat Consultation Letter - Content Assessment
Skills Criteria Points

1 2 3 4
HelpingThe teacher observed the students offering assistance to each other. None of the Time Some of the Time Most of the Time All of the Time ____
ListeningThe teacher observed students working from each other's ideas. None of the Time Some of the Time Most of the Time All of the Time ____
Participating:The teacher observed each student contributing to the project. None of the Time Some of the Time Most of the Time All of the Time ____
Persuading:The teacher observed the students exchanging, defending, and rethinking ideas. None of the Time Some of the Time Most of the Time All of the Time ____
Questioning:The teacher observed the students interacting, discussing, and posing questions to all members of the team. None of the Time Some of the Time Most of the Time All of the Time ____
Respecting:The teacher observed the students encouraging and supporting the ideas and efforts of others. None of the Time Some of the Time Most of the Time All of the Time ____
Sharing:The teacher observed the students offering ideas and reporting their findings to each other. None of the Time Some of the Time Most of the Time All of the Time ____

Conclusion:  
  Congratulations! You and your team of experts have done your job by informing Mayor Maybee how to make a sound decision about the bats in her community of Middletown. Your consultation team was paid handsomely for the research and letter of recommendation. Keep up the great work!
If you want to learn more about bats, you might like to check these books out from the library.

Prior, Jennifer Overend. Thematic Unit, Bats. California: Teacher Created Matrials, Inc., 1999.

Gilpin, Daniel. Scary Creatures Bats. New York: Franklin Watts, 2004.

Dornfeld, Margaret. Animals, Bats. New York: Benchmark Books, 2005.

Markle, Sandra. Outside and Inside Bats. New York: Antheneum Books for Young Readers, 1997.

Johnson, Sylvia A.. Bats. Minneapolis: Lerner Publications Company, 1985.

Perry, Phyllis J.. Bats. the Amazing Upside-downers. New York: Franklin Watts, 1998.

Braun, Eric, and Sandra Donovan. Bats. Austin: Steadwell Books, 2002.

Sway, Marlene. Bats. New York: Franklin Watts, 1999.


Prior, Jennifer Overend. Thematic Unit, Bats. California: Teacher Created Matrials, Inc., 1999.

Gilpin, Daniel. Scary Creatures Bats. New York: Franklin Watts, 2004.

Dornfeld, Margaret. Animals, Bats. New York: Benchmark Books, 2005.

Markle, Sandra. Outside and Inside Bats. New York: Antheneum Books for Young Readers, 1997.

Johnson, Sylvia A.. Bats. Minneapolis: Lerner Publications Company, 1985.

Perry, Phyllis J.. Bats. the Amazing Upside-downers. New York: Franklin Watts, 1998.

Braun, Eric, and Sandra Donovan. Bats. Austin: Steadwell Books, 2002.

Sway, Marlene. Bats. New York: Franklin Watts, 1999.

Wood, Linda C., Rink, and Deane. Bats. California: Wildlife Education, Ltd., 2001.

Gibbons, Gail. Bats. New York: Holiday House, 1999.

Fiction

Cannon, Janell. Stellaluna. San Diego: Harcourt Brace and Company, 1993.


Magazine

Tuttle, Merlin D.. "Bat Man." National Geographic Explorer October 2006: 6-11.

This Web Quest is available at www.teach-nology.com