Posted by: Kirsten | Wednesday, 28 November 2007

Joshua Tree’s “Blockbuster” Video Collection!

Videos are available for teachers to borrow from Joshua Tree National Park. The park ships to you, and you pay for shipping back to the park… easy! The borrowing period is anywhere from two to four weeks, depending on your distance from the park, but be sure to view and return any videos you borrow as soon as possible.Joshua Tree Desert Bighorn Sheep

The videos are separated into categories and rated for your convenience (5 = Best), and some have educator guides or activities with them (*). Invite other homeschooling families over to your place, fire up the microwave popcorn, and enjoy!

Contact the Joshua Tree education office at 760-367-3011 to arrange to borrow park videos. Also visit the Joshua Tree “For Teachers” page for other resources, ideas, and inspiration.

ANIMALS

Length Description Grade Rating
A Delicate Balance 14 min. Explores why the desert tortoise is a threatened species and what people can do to help. 5+ 4
California Desert Tortoise 5 min. Introduces the desert tortoise, talks about ravens as predators, and gives instructions on how to move a tortoise safely from the road. 3+ 4
The Turtle Family 30 min. Explains differences among turtles, tortoises, and terrapins, with footage of species from all over the world. 3+ 5
Coyoteland

17 min.

Filmmaker Jay April captures the conflict between urban development and wildlife when a coyote carries away a domestic pet. 5+ 4
Catch Me If You Can 20 min. Shows how the play activities of young animals help them survive as adults. 2+ 5
Endangered 30 min. Explains what the Endangered Species Act is and why we need it. 7+ 4

CULTURAL HISTORY

Length Description Grade Rating
Silent Witness 30 min. Narrated by Robert Redford, this video explores the destruction of American Indian archeological sites on public lands. With beautiful photography and words from Pueblo Indians, archeologists and national park rangers, your students will understand the importance of these disappearing artifacts. 7+ 5
The Free Land 18 min. Explains the Homesteading Act of 1862 and its effects. Produced by Homestead National Monument. 4+ 4

DESERTS

Length Description Grade Rating
Desert Song 55 min. Remarkable wildlife photography of desert animals caring for their young, building homes, searching for food, and competing for dominance. 3+ 5
Desert Under Siege 28 min. Explores the impact of grazing, mining, off-road vehicles, and military use on the health of the California deserts. 5+ 3
Joshua Tree National Park 30 min. A general introduction to the park’s plants, animals, and early human inhabitants. 5+ 3
The Desert 15 min. Explores the adaptations and relationships among desert plant and animal species. 4+ 2
Challenge of the Desert 28 min. The story of the Keys family, who homesteaded in what is now Joshua Tree National Park. 4+ 4
Invasion of the Tamarisk 11 min. Learn how the park deals with non-native plants, such as tamarisk, when they take root inside park boundaries. 7+ 4
California’s Gold—Joshua Tree 30 min. Explore Joshua Joshua Tree National Park with Huell Howser. 4+ 4

ENVIRONMENT

Length Description Grade Rating
You Can Make a Difference 25 min. Uses a news report format to familiarize students with our most common environmental problems and what they can do to help. 8+ 5
We Can Make a Difference 20 min. A good introduction to an environmental unit. Made by a high school class in Ojai, California. 6+ 4
Tinka’s Plant 13 min. A young girl in Los Angeles learns about recycling and teaches her friends how easy it can be. 3–6 4
This Was Your Planet 20 min. Shows how one “messy” boy learns to stop littering. 4–6 3

NATURAL HISTORY

Length Description Grade Rating
Biological Diversity 14 min. National parks are places where we can preserve biological diversity. 4+ 3
Rare and Endangered Plants of California 18 min. Identifies and provides the scientific names of many rare California plants. 7+ 1
Children and Africanized Honey Bees 9 min. Students learn what to do about Africanized honey bees. 1–6 2
Living with Africanized Honey Bees 12 min. Students learn about the life cycle of bees and how Africanized honey bees got established in the Americas. 4+ 3
Beyond the Backyard 35 min. Join highschool students as they plan a backpacking trip, and learn about public lands and leave no trace camping. 7+ 3
The Wilderness Idea 58 min. Documents early environmental politics by tracing the work of John Muir and Gifford Pinchot. 7+ 4
Wild By Law 58 min. This video looks at the history, concepts, and beliefs of what is wilderness and how it is management. 7+ 4
The Last Parable 30 min. Great footage of wilderness areas will help students understand what wilderness is and why it is important to preserve it. 4+ 3
Canyon Soft Paths 20 min. Explains how to have a minimum impact on fragile desert lands using Leave No Trace ethics. 5+ 3
Soft Paths 31 min. A demonstration of Leave No Trace ethics. 5+ 3

NATIONAL PARKS

Length Description Grade Rating
Where in the World? 40 min. Five friends travel to Yosemite, Olympic and Fort Vancouver and discover the fabulous things to see, do and learn in national parks, Narrated by kids. 3+ 4
Conviction of the Heart 8 min. Kenny Loggins’ song is heard over footage of people enjoying national parks. all 5
National Parks: An American Legacy 28 min. Learn about the history of the National Park System in America with early footage of visitors in parks. A section at the end gives information about jobs with the National Park Service 7+ 5
Meet the Mentor 10 min. Explains what park rangers do. Part of the Nature Guide series by Scholastic. 3+ 4

TEACHERS

Length Description Grade Rating
Parks as Classrooms 28 min. Explains what the National Park Service program, Parks As Classrooms, has to offer teachers in their pursuit of “active education.” adults 4
Explore Your World 17 min. Explains how GIS can be used in the classroom. adults 3
GPS 15 min. Step by step instruction on how to use a Garmin GPS 12. 7+ 2
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