Natural Leaf Packs
Student groups will take apart and wash leaf packs to locate macroinvertebrates, preserve them in alcohol, answer questions about their discovery, report their answers to the class, and locate the stream or streams where these leaf packs come from.
Students will explore natural leaf packs from streams to discover the organisms that live in them and feed off the leaves.
Students will locate the stream or streams where these leaf packs were collected to view the land use surrounding the stream.
5 natural leaf packs
5 dishwashing tubs
25 pairs tweezers
25 hand lenses
5 discovery scopes
5 shallow white plastic trays for viewing
1 fine mesh sieve
5 large plastic bottles with lids large bottle rubbing alcohol
5 large sheets of lined chart paper
5 permanent markers conventional and computerized maps of area
1.  Students divide into groups of 4 or 5.
2.  Students will divide their leaf packs inside the dish tubs.
3.  One group at a time washes their leaves of material and insects into the fine mesh sieve. (If not enough sinks are available, the children can sort through the leaves to find the bugs without washing them)out.
4.  Students will transfer this material and all creatures into the shallow white plastic trays and add water.
5.  Using the hand lenses and discovery scopes they observe the different creatures obtained from the leaf pack.
6.  Each group preserves their macroinvertebrates in the large plastic jars with alcohol.
7.  Groups talk together to answer the following questions: a. Based on your observations, what do you think the creatures are that you obtained from your leaf pack b. What do you know about animals that come from streams? c. What do you know about plants that live in streams? d. Why do you think these creatures are living in the leaf packs? e. What more would you like to know about leaf packs, the animals you found, and the streams they came from?
8.  One person from each group will be chosen as a recorder. That person will record the answers from the group.
9.  One or more persons will act as reporters from each group to report their findings to the class.
10.  We will find the location of any of the streams from which leaf packs were collected.
11.  Charts from each group will be saved for future use.
Procedure for studying leafpacks came from Leaf Pack Network Website:
State Standards
1.3.4- The student will learn the use of new instruments and equipment by following instructions in a manual or from oral direction.(NTB)
1.5.2- The student will explain scientific concepts and processes through drawing, writing, and/or oral communication.
Lesson Resources