Reflection: Backwards Planning Plant Life Cycles - Section 1: Opening


To begin this lesson, I had the students engage in a constructivist style activity that allowed them to apply their knowledge of plants to put the steps of the plant life cycle in the order.  The students have had a lot of exposure to the various plant structures and their function during previous lessons in this unit. 

I was pleasantly surprised at how well the students did putting the steps in order.  Even though they did not put the steps in a circle, the majority of the student had the steps in the correct order.  After gaining information about what a life cycle is, the students were able to go back to the cards and finish the life cycle correctly.

I think this lesson is a great example of backwards planning at work.  When I thought about teaching the students the steps of the life cycle, it seemed like a big task.  I took this concept and broke it down into smaller concepts that the students needed to know to understand the life cycle.  I then created lessons that hit on these concepts.  The lessons at times might have seemed like "baby steps", but they helped to create a firm foundation that set the students up for success when given the large concept of the life cycle of plants. 

It takes time to break a concept down into its smaller concepts, but I think it is time well spent.  This lesson almost taught itself and it is because of the lessons that led up to this one. 

  Building Background Knowledge
  Backwards Planning: Building Background Knowledge
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Plant Life Cycles

Unit 7: Planting
Lesson 10 of 14

Objective: Students will be able to describe the stages of plant development by creating a life cycle model.

Big Idea: The students have had exposure to lots of different concepts related to plants. Now it is time for them to bring these ideas together to learn more about the life cycle of plants.

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6 teachers like this lesson
Science, Science Skills, plants, ELL, plant
  47 minutes
lifecycle bean
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