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“Caw-Caw-Caw” Understanding the American Crow Case Study

Caw Caw Caw image

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School(s): Enfield Elementary
Grade(s): First Grade
Subject(s): Reading, Writing, Science, Art

Essential Questions

What role can we play in educating our community about the American crow - a highly intelligent bird that contributes to our local ecosystem?
What are our peer/community/family attitudes toward crows?
What do crows look like and what are their behaviors?
What is the crow’s life cycle and how does it live?
How do crows contribute to our eco-system?

Case Study At A Glance

First-grade students at Enfield Elementary School studied the American Crow to determine the role we can play in educating the community about this highly intelligent bird, and how it contributes to our local ecosystem.  Students completed a survey, created a lapbook, and presented to an audience information that they learned.  The unit also culminated with the creation of a classroom book, to which each child will contribute one page. 

Standards Addressed/Long Term Learning Targets


  • Read text and use media to determine patterns in behavior of parents and offspring that help offspring survive (.LS1-2)
  • Structure and function (LS1-2)
  • Growth and development of organisms (LS1.B)

Social Studies

  • A citizen is a member of a community or group; students are citizens of their local and global communities. (L1.3)


  • Write informative and explanatory text in which they name a topic, supply some facts, and provide some sense of closure (LW2)
  • Participate in shared research and writing projects (LW7)


  • Ask and answer questions about key details in a text (LRI1)
  • Identify the main topic and retell key details of the text (LRI2)
  • Ask and answer questions to help determine or clarify the meaning of words and phrases in text (LRI4)

Listening and Speaking

  • Participate in collaborative conversations with diverse partners about grade 1 topics and texts with peers and adults in small and larger groups (LSL1)


Anchor Texts

Crows, Amazing and Wonderful by Laurence Pringle
Smart Crows from Reading A-Z, Level F
Crows / Short Documentary (National Geographic)

Other Suggested Texts/Resources

Cornell Lab of Ornithology website