Make your own free website on

        Endangered Animals WebQuest

An Internet WebQuest on Endangered Animals

Created by Michele Partyka


Introduction The Quest The Process and Resources Phase 1 Phase 2 Roles

    While you are vacationing in the Florida Everglades, you receive an urgent e-mail on your lap-top.  The environmental agency that you are currently employed by is calling all of their staff members to report to work.  The environment is posing a severe threat to the habitat of an already highly endangered animal.  It is going to be your responsibility to determine the reasons why this animal is on the verge of becoming extinct and to formulate a plan to save this animal.  So, pack your bags and get ready to take a journey into the realm of the trials and tribulations of the life of your endangered animal.

Based upon your experience with endangered animals, you are ready to discover the solution to this most disturbing problem of extinction. When we study complex problems such as these, there is usually a lot more to the issue that we don't learn about after only a quick exploration. Investigating the issue and and learning to ask the right questions is the way we receive the answers to our most pressing problems.

In the following WebQuest, you will use the power of teamwork and the abundant resources on the Internet to learn all about the situation your endangered animal faces, and to devise a way to prevent this animal from becoming extinct.


The Quest

What environmental factors contribute to the extinction of a particular animal species?


The Process and Resources

In this WebQuest you will be working together with a partner. Each team will answer the Task or Quest(ion). As a member of the team you will explore some selected Internet sites from all over the world created by people who care about Endangered Animals. Because these are real Web pages we're tapping into, not things made just for schools, the reading level might challenge you. Feel free to use the online Webster dictionary or one in your classroom.

You'll begin with both partners on your team getting some background before dividing into roles where each of you become experts on one part of the topic.

Phase 1 - Background: Something for Everyone

Use the Internet information linked below to answer the basic questions of who? what? where? when? why? and how? Be creative in exploring the information so that you answer these questions as fully and insightfully as you can. 

Phase 2 - Looking Deeper from Different Perspectives


1. Each team member will explore two of the assigned roles below.

2. Read through the files linked to your group. If you print out the files, underline the passages that you feel are the most important. If you look at the files on the computer, copy sections you feel are important by dragging the mouse across the passage and copying / pasting it into a word processor or other writing software.

3. Note: Remember to write down or copy/paste the URL of the file you take the passage from so you can quickly go back to it if you need to to prove your point.

4. Be prepared to focus what you've learned into one main opinion that answers the Big Quest(ion) or Task based on what you have learned from the links for your role.


Animal habitat specialist-

The animal habitat specialist is responsible for researching the animal's NATURAL habitat.
Use the Internet information linked below to answer these questions specifically related to Animal habitat specialist:

1. What is your animal's natural habitat like?
2. What are the types of natural vegetation found in your animal's habitat?
3. What are some of the other animals that your animal shares its habitat with?

Habitat design specialist-

The habitat design specialist will re-create the animals NATURAL habitat using one of the various methods mentioned below.
Use the Internet information linked below to answer these questions specifically related to Habitat design specialist:

1. How are you going to display your animal's habitat?
2. Will you create a shadow box, a 3-d model, a drawing or will you use another clever way to present your animal's habitat?
3. WHAT LOW COST, EVERYDAY, HOUSEHOLD MATERIALS will you need to put together to create this natural habitat?
4. What criteria will you use to determine if your project is of seventh grade quality, is neatly done, and draws upon your creative and imaginative abilities?
5. How will you depict your animal in its natural habitat with the appropriate plants, animals, and surroundings.


The environmentalist has the task of finding out background information about the animal, its habitat requirements, problems the animal faces in its environment, and how humans have contributed to these problems.
Use the Internet information linked below to answer these questions specifically related to Environmentalist:

1. What is the name of the animal you have chosen to help?
2. How would you describe the habitat that your animal is found in?
3. What environmental requirements is it impossible for your animal to survive without?
4. What changes have occurred in this environment that have had the greatest impact on your animal?
5. What is the role that humans have played in causing some of these environmental changes to take place?


Problem Solver- 

Problem solvers will use the information gathered to formulate a plan to help save the animal from extinction.
Use the Internet information linked below to answer these questions specifically related to Problem Solver:

1. What have other environmentalists done or what are they currently doing to help protect this animal?
2. Do you agree with what the scientists have done or are currently doing to help your animal avoid the perils of extinction?
3. What ideas do you have about how to protect your animal?
4. Why do you think your ideas will help to reduce the possibility of extinction?
5. What plan of action will you implement to insure that your ideas for protecting your animal from extinction are carried out?

Phase 3 - Debating, Discussing, and Reaching Consensus

Working together as partners, you have both learned a great deal about endangered animals and the problems they face trying to exist on our planet. Now team members will meet and will share the expertise they have gained by searching from their own perspective. Now, you must all answer the Task / Quest (questions) together. Each of you will bring a certain viewpoint to the meeting. You may agree or disagree with each other. Use information, pictures, movies, facts, opinions, etc.. from the Web pages you explored to convince each other that your viewpoint is important and should be part of your team's answer to the Task / Quest. Your Web Quest team should formulate an answer
that both team members feel answers the Task / Quest and proposes a workable solution to the problem.

Phase 4 - Real World Feedback

You and your partner have learned a lot by dividing up into different roles. Now's the time to put your learning into a letter that you'll send out for real world feedback. Together you will write a letter that contains opinions, information, and perspectives that you've gained. Here's the process:

1. Begin your letter with a statement of who you are and why you are writing your message to this particular person or organization.

2. Give background information that shows you understand the topic.


3. Each partner should write a paragraph that gives two good reasons supporting the team's opinion. Make sure to be specific in both the information (like where you got it from on the Web) and the reasoning (why the information proves your group's point).

4. Have each person on the team proofread the message. Use correct letter format and make sure you have correctly addressed the e-mail message. Use the link below to make contact. Send your message and make sure your teacher gets a copy.

5. Team members will create a Power Point presentation that includes the following slides that
        a.    name and describe the animal / or show and name the animal
        b.   describe the animal's NATURAL habitat/environmental requirements
        c.   explain the environmental problem that the animal faces, including how humans have contributed to this problem
        d.  illustrate what environmentalists are already doing to help protect this animal from further environmental hazards.
Your Contact is: ask an expert


wpe1B.gif (1147 bytes)wpe1B.gif (1147 bytes) Your Pay Checkwpe1B.gif (1147 bytes)wpe1B.gif (1147 bytes)

Your pay check will reflect the following criteria:

    *Did you adequately describe your animal?
    *Are your animal's habitat and environmental requirements            thoroughly described?
    *Have you clearly defined the environmental difficulties or changes that are affecting your animal?
    *Did you discuss the role humans play in your animals plight?
    *Does your research reflect the possible solutions that other scientists have discovered?
    *Have you contributed your own ideas and possible solutions to this problem?
    *Did you authentically re-create your animal's NATURAL habitat in a 3-dimensional or other medium?
   *Did your Power Point presentation follow the guidelines outlined in Phase 4 - Real World Feedback?

Congratulations! You have helped prevent another animal from approaching the brink of extinction.


Returning from your well deserved vacation to help your animal avoid extinction was a very conscientious and noble thing to do. Nice work! You should be proud of your accomplishment.wpe21.gif (1392 bytes) Now you can clearly see how it is everyone's responsibility to help the animals we share our planet with to survive. How can you use the information that you have learned to see possible solutions to everyday problems you may experience in your life? What other issues concerning endangered animals could still be explored? Remember learning is a life long process and should not end when you leave school for the day.
So, what are you waiting for, get online, go to, and book your airline flight to return to the Florida Everglades. Don't forget your insect repellent!

wpe1E.gif (1077 bytes)

created by Filamentality Content by Michele Partyka,
Last revised Thu Jul 20 11:53:56 US/Pacific 2000