The 4th grade students of the Colegio San Valero de Alcañiz (Teruel) investigate the birds in their environment

Students during the identification of bird songs. Photo provided by Adrian Ponz.

(Zaragoza. Monday, June 20, 2022). The 4th grade students of the Colegio San Valero de Alcañiz (Teruel) have carried out research on birds over the last two months, led by researchers from the Beagle group and members of the CienciaTE project.

In the first of the sessions of this program, the students presented the observations they had made at some point in their lives about birds and the questions they asked themselves about them. Of all the questions collected, the majority required specific information on birds and only a few suggested an inquiry process. The latter were grouped by theme and produced three lines of research:

(1) What birds live in our environment, are they with us all year round?

(2) How are birds related to each other and to other elements of the ecosystem?

(3) How and with what materials do they build their nests?

During the following three weeks, two groups of students were in charge of collecting data in each line of research in their free time, with their families. To do this, they used tables and cards. In the case of lines of research 2 and 3, they could also study them via webcam, such as those of the Spanish Society of Ornithology (

Last Wednesday, June 15, a full morning was dedicated to investigating the three lines through an ornithological route through the streets and parks of Alcañiz, ending on the banks of the Guadalope River, in order to complete the data collection and, then, in the classroom, reach conclusions as a group about what was investigated in each line. In the playground of the school, before leaving the center to start the route, the students have already located the first nest, that of a Eurasian turtledove.

The identification of birds was carried out both visually and through their songs, just as they had previously practiced in the classroom with the songs of the most common birds.

Adrián Ponz Miranda, ornithologist and researcher of the Beagle group, of Research in Didactics of Natural Sciences; and from the CienciaTE project, he has guided and accompanied the students throughout the investigation.


Students during the observation of bird nests. Photo provided by Adrian Ponz.


Nest of the Eurasian turtledove located in the center patio. Photo provided by Adrian Ponz.