Lesson: Convection Currents
See Attachment for Complete Lesson Plan
Lesson Plan is an attachment. Short explanation of attached lesson: It is a two day lesson based on the scientific inquiry style of Activity before concept, concept before vocabulary, and reading. The first day begins with a question to be answered by doing an investigation (Activity before concept). At the end of the first day time needs to be set aside where groups present their findings from the experiment and are asked guiding questions by teacher to refine conclusions (Concept before vocabulary). On the second day students participate in note taking and writing/reading activities to learn vocabulary associated with concept (Reading).
This investigation or experiment has been conducted with two groups of students. This investigation is with water and can be done in small groups or as a whole class demonstration. With one of the groups I did experiment whole class. This was done because science class had just begun and behavior expectations of small group work had not taken place. This experiment is done with water, some of the water has food coloring in it. The pontential for disaster is high so I would encourage teachers to do a whole class demonstration or small groups with parent volunteers handling materials.
Another difficult part of this experiment is having students relate what they see happen in water to what happens in air. The questions in the attached lesson plan can help guide that inquiry. Also, the water does not move in a cyclical manner during experiment and it is important to question students to come to that conclusion by picturing what would happen if there was a lot of hot and cold water added at one time.
The power point has been updated to include opportunities for students to engage in discussions and contribution to the note taking process.