AudienceSecondary school, Tertiary
Learning stageStage 4, Stage 5, Stage 6
Learning areaScience, Technology
TypeLearning journey, Teaching resources
On this page...
Learning journeys offer a scaffolded approach to exploring a topic both in the classroom and excursions. Follow our learning journey to deepen your students’ knowledge and understanding of Australian frogs, their habitats and how the citizen science FrogID project is growing a database of biodiversity records and audio recordings that is an unparalleled information resource on Australia’s frogs.
Australia has over 240 known species of frog, almost all of which are found nowhere else in the world. Some species are flourishing, like the Striped Marsh Frog. But others have declined dramatically since the 1980s, and four have become extinct. FrogID is helping us learn more about what is happening to Australia’s frogs. All around the country, people are recording frog calls with nothing more than a smartphone.
FrogID is Australia’s first national frog identification project, created by the Australian Museum. It is a citizen science project that enables registered users to submit audio recordings, these are then identified, and the user is notified of what species of frog they recorded. The FrogID app also captures date, time and location data that informs Australian Museum research on frog distribution and breeding behaviour.
Through this learning journey students will:
- Be able to name some Australian frogs and identify species from their calls.
- Identify and describe suitable frog habitats.
- Identify frog adaptations and explain how they help them to survive and reproduce.
- Develop their digital and communication skills.
Prepare your students
An Acknowledgement of Country is a statement that pays respect to the Traditional Custodians of the Country that you are learning or meeting on and recognises their ongoing relationship with Country. The Australian Museum respects and acknowledges the Gadigal people as the Custodians of the land on which the Museum stands.
Which First Nations Country or Nation was your school built upon? If you are unsure contact a local First Nations organisation to find out. You might like to start with the NSW Aboriginal Land Council and the Aboriginal Education Consultative Group.
Ask your students to write an Acknowledgement of Country for your school. To get them started, read more about why an Acknowledgement of Country is important and how to write one in this ABC article.
Ask your class some of the following questions to get them thinking about frogs and their features.
What’s the difference between a vertebrate and an invertebrate? Which vertebrate animal group do frogs belong? What features does this group have? Can you name the other groups of animals and their defining features?
Do you know what types of frogs live in your home, backyard, school yard, or local park? Have you ever heard a frog call? Or was it an insect, a bird or even a motorbike?
FrogID is a detailed field guide to Australia's frog species. Use the app or the FrogID website to research frog species and listen to their calls. You can use the filters to search for your own local habitat or region.
Sharing a collection of frog, bird and insect calls. Get the class to try and identify which call is from a frog. This could be a video similar to the FrogID promo video or an online resource in which students do a ‘frog/not a frog’ quiz after listening to some short recordings.
Learn about frog habitats and adaptations
A selection of education resources for schools can be found on the FrogID website.
Download the FrogID app and learn how to use it
Download the FrogID app, iOS app or Android app and create an account. Become familiar with the different features of the app, such as how to make a recording, take a photo and add notes about the habitat where you hear a frog, and how to submit your call to the Australian Museum. You can also become an audio DNA expert by listening to the calls submitted by researchers and other participants - each species has a unique call.
You are now a FrogID expert. It’s time to record some calls on your field trip.
On-demand video conference with Dr Jodi Rowley, Chief Scientist of FrogID and Curator, Amphibian & Reptile Conservation Biology at the Australian Museum Research Institute
A special opportunity to learn from the experts! In this video Dr Jodi Rowley, a biologist with a focus on amphibian diversity, ecology and conservation, and a passion for communicating biodiversity conservation, talks about FrogID and answers questions about frogs.
Watch the Meet the experts session with Dr Jodi Rowley below.
Visit local frog habitats and use the FrogID App to record frog calls
Before you head out to use the FrogID app - make sure everyone has set up a FrogID account and installed the app on their smartphones. There are two ways to set up an account, either in the profile section of the FrogID app or at the login page on the website (https://www.frogid.net.au/login). Once you have an account you are free to contribute frog calls as often as you like.
Get out in the field to discover different frogs and their diverse habitats, remember to wash your shoes between sites, and be careful where you tread. Male frogs call to attract females of their own species to breed, and frogs prefer to breed near water – streams, ponds, dams, wetlands are all good places to start.
We recommend that your students mainly work in small groups however how you implement and manage the activities is up to you.
Record the frog calls you hear in the field with the FrogID app, and submit them to Australia's first national frog count. Our experts will validate the frog calls ASAP!
Back in the classroom
Further frog investigation
As a class, discuss the frogs they heard during the field trip. Do some further research about these frogs by looking at the online factsheets of frogs for any species that were heard and validated by the experts.
Present your findings
Think about what habitat/s you visited, and what species might be found in each type of habitat. In groups, create a PowerPoint presentation using the included template about frogs and their habitats. Students could also include images and video from the field trip and additional facts about their frogs species.
Become a Sleek Geek
Use your new knowledge of frog species to create a video that is scientifically accurate, and shows off your creativity and passion for science.
You might want to submit it for the Sleek Geeks Science Eureka Prize - which is a yearly prize that encourages Australian students to communicate a scientific concept in a way that is accessible and entertaining to the public while painlessly increasing their science knowledge. Find out more.
Build a Frog Hotel in your playground or local park
Frog Hotels provide a safe hiding place for tree frogs. Watch this video developed by previous FrogID partners, Bunnings which shows how the hotel can be easily constructed and decorated using simple materials. It can take some time for frogs to show up, but when they do, it’s a great opportunity to monitor and learn more about your local amphibians. Don’t forget to log all your data with the FrogID app.
Visit the FrogID website
There’s no way scientists can count Australia’s frogs on their own. The country’s too big and there’s too many frogs! That’s where you come in. With FrogID, citizen scientists just like you can help us put frogs on the map!Get involved now!