‹ Back to List

Citizen science: Using Journey North app to follow the seasons

Technology is becoming more prevalent in today’s classroom. But, how you use it can determine the usefulness of the technology and how it enhances the learning experience. ISTA member Teresa Branson shared her experience with the Journey North app for documenting citizen science in the spring Advocate

Journey North was founded in 1994 to use technology to engage citizen scientists in tracking migrations and seasonal changes. Using this app, citizen scientists can report sightings and map changing migrations in real time.

The Journey North site contains layers of information and resources for classroom teachers to enhance the classroom curriculum and engage students in observing the seasons and the world around them.

I began using Journey North with my fourth-grade students at Marrs Elementary School in 1996. My students were excited to see our school’s name on the tulip planted map and checked weekly to see how many other places planted tulips. We used the provided resources, dissected tulip bulbs and learned the parts of a tulip. For the past 21 years, I have planted red emperor tulips in many area schools.

Join Journey North! Register your classroom at Your first activities could be reporting when you first see robins, hummingbirds or monarch butterflies. Each section of the website has many learning opportunities for students.

Want more apps for educators? Read the ISTA Advocate or visit ISTA’s Pinterest technology board