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Ecosystems, Visual Art Analysis


3rd, 4th, 5th


Science, Biology, Art


50 minutes

Regional Focus

North America, United States, USA - Northeast, New Jersey


Google Docs, Google Slides


This lesson plan is licensed under Creative Commons.

Creative Commons License

The New Jersey Bird Crisis (Animate for the Animals #2)

Created By Teacher:
Last Updated:
Nov 30, 2022


This lesson introduces students to stop motion animation and educates students on concerns about bird populations in New Jersey. 

Step 1 - Inquire: Students watch stop motion videos and discuss the techniques. 

Step 2 - Investigate: Students investigate the decrease in bird populations in New Jersey due to climate change.

Step 3 - Inspire: Students work collaboratively to plan a presentation to create awareness and advocate for change to protect bird populations in their local area.


  • Students practice research and collaboration skills throughout the lesson.
  • Students take action by planning a stop motion animation to help protect New Jersey bird species.

Additional Prerequisites

  • This is lesson 2 of 4 in our 3rd-5th grade Animate for the Animals unit.
  • Students will need access to devices to complete the research task.


  • Student groups could be created by teachers to ensure everyone can access the activities.
  • Teachers can support students by viewing the research sources beforehand to determine sources appropriate for lower-level readers.
  • You may allow students to find their own sources when conducting research.

This lesson incorporates stop motion animation art to deliver a message regarding the reduction of birds in New Jersey. All materials used in the lesson have been verified and are suitable for teaching. In this light, this lesson is credible and recommended for the classroom.

This resource addresses the listed standards. To fully meet standards, search for more related resources.

  • Visual & Performing Arts
    • Media Arts: Standard 1 - Generating and conceptualizing ideas.
      • 1.2.5.Cr1a: Generate ideas for media artwork, using a variety of tools, methods and/or materials.
      • 1.2.5.Cr1d: Collaboratively form ideas, plans, and models to prepare for media artwork.
    • Media Arts: Standard 7 - Perceiving and analyzing products.
      • 1.2.5.Re7b: Identify, describe, explain and differentiate how various forms, methods, and styles in media artworks affect and manage audience experience when addressing global issues including climate change.
    • Media Arts: Standard 11 - Relating artistic ideas and works within societal, cultural, and historical contexts to deepen understanding.
      • 1.2.5.Cn11a: Identify, explain, research and show how media artworks and ideas relate to personal, social and community life (e.g., exploring online behavior, fantasy and reality, commercial and information purposes, history, ethics).
  • Students watch the stop motion video Plastic Riptide.
    • Before the video, encourage students to think about the animation effectiveness, the message in the animation, and whether they are feeling empathetic as they watch.
    • After the video, students think-pair-share with a partner using the question prompts and sentence starters on the Teacher Slideshow.
  • Teacher explains to students that they will be creating their own stop motion animation about a local climate change issue in their area.
  • Teacher introduces students to the vocabulary words stop motion, endangered, migration, and ecosystem.


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