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Pioneer: Conduct Primate Research At Zoo

During your field trip to the zoo, you and your partner will make general observations of primates and then focus on one particular individual. Through this activity, you will gain experience in data collection and conducting behavioral observations, as well as gain insight into the extraordinary life of chimpanzee or gorilla society.
Arrow Prepare for Field Trip:
  1. Before you conduct your own observations, read samples from Dr. Goodall’s research.
  2. Read about the different primate behaviors to prepare for your general observations at the zoo.
  3. Print out the datasheet and be sure to take it with you on the field trip!
  4. Choose one particular category of behaviors (e.g., Aggression) to focus on in the second part of your data collection and then find our more by reading about the behavior.
  5. In the “Specific Behaviors” section of the data sheet, fill in behaviors you will look for under your chosen category. For example, if you chose Aggression and you will be viewing chimpanzees, you may write arm raise, charging display, and biting in the provided spaces.

 Find Out More
Behavior Chimps Gorillas
Aggression Find Out More!  
Communication Find Out More!  
Feeding Find Out More!  
Friendly Find Out More!  
Locomotion Find Out More!  
Mother-Infant Find Out More!  
Play Find Out More!  
Submission Find Out More!  
Arrow Start Your Data Collection:

At Gombe, two researchers work side by side to collect data of chimpanzee behavior. One researcher records data on a target individual and the other records data on the entire group of chimpanzees. When making your observations at the zoo, you and your partner will mirror the research methodology used at Gombe.

Click here for field trip instructions.

Arrow Share Your Results:
  • Prepare a formal lab report, including hypothesis, procedure, data, drawings, and conclusions.
  • Back in your classroom, share your findings in a class discussion.
  • Send your observations to the zookeepers and thank them for their time.
 Student's Journal:
 Unit One
 Unit Two
 Unit Three
 Unit Four
 Related Topics:
  ArrowABC's of Chimp Behavior
  ArrowDr. Jane's Scrapbook
  ArrowMultiple Intelligences
  ArrowOnline Dictionary
  ArrowTree Sketching Guide
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