What did you find beneficial about teaching using group-based cloud computing (GbCC), specifically the wolves and sheep simulation?

The kids loved it! At the start they understood how serious the loss of gray wolves was to Yellowstone. They understood even more when I showed them how the gray wolves population was extremely important to Yellowstone because it kept Yellowstone in balance. When they were able to see the simulation of the wolves and sheep and how the sheep overtook the area and then ate all the grass, they understood that the need for wolves in order for Yellowstone to be healthy was every important.

What did you find challenging?

Mostly that the site kept crashing. Some of the buttons and numbers seemed confusing to the kids, and they didn’t know what to do with them. Most of the lesson were too fun to find challenging. For fifth grade, though, I hyped it up and made it my own because the lesson wasn’t as “kid friendly” as I hoped it would be. Getting to discover different species of wolves is something added to make it more fun.

Did your students use the Gallery feature of the simulation?

My fifth graders didn’t, but my sixth graders did. They shared with each other how to keep the area balanced and what process they used to do that.

How was participation in your class when using the GbCC Wolves-Sheep Predation model?

100% participation. They loved getting on the computer and being able to push buttons and see what happened. Sixth grade liked the gallery feature a lot and shared with people outside of their groups.