Lesson 6 of 7
Objective: SWBAT to identify organisms in classification categories by name, image, and characteristics.
I have recently added this short, energetic lesson because I felt that my students needed a chance to really dig into this large amount of content in our study of classification and our survey of life on Earth. By using a familiar jeopardy game format, this lesson gives students a friendly, competitive environment that prompts them to work to build their recall and memory of the major classification groups and relevant, appropriate scientific terminology.
You can spend the period just using the slides I've created as game question choices/prompts. However, an additional piece I added this year was to ask student groups to find some visual of their own and contribute them to the game using their personal devices or our classroom computer. The time spent on recalling names, characteristics, and connections help students feel confident as we move into our end of unit project outlined in the next lesson in this series. I also find that during the spring quarter, students are ready for more playful, less text driven experiences and have the maturity to be able to participate joyfully while still focusing on the content goals we have for the day. In the past, I think I would have seen this lesson as something to do for a sub day or when many students are absent, no essential to the curriculum. But now I am seeing it as another way for students to collaborate and communicate for deeper learning and I build in intentional time for the experience.
1. Tell students that today they will be working in teams to play a classification jeopardy game.
2. Remind them that our goal today is to help them put together all of the information we have been studying about classification and the Kingdoms and to help with both their recall and understanding of key terms and classification groups/subgroups.
3. Tell students that they may use support materials such as their textbook, notes, or any of the following documents.
1. Divide the class in half to form two teams and allow them to arrange their desks in any way that they wish.
- Note: You can be the emcee/leader of the game or you can have a student do it, I prefer to have a student pair direct the game, it helps with issues of fairness when determining who has buzzed in first to answer a question.
2. Ask student teams to come up with a team name and post them on the board.
3. Ask for and introduce your student emcee pair.
4. Remind students of the jeopardy game class rules. Below are mine, yours may be different and that is ok!
- Each team sends up one representative to answer a question
- Team members can have out notes on their desk, but can't take them up with them to answer
- Team members may help out their representative up at the front
- when representatives hear the question and know the answer, they buzz in by ringing a buzzer/bell you have provided them.
Your student pair of emcees can split jobs: one works the questions/images while the other keeps score. Both emcees collaborate to ensure that the answer is correct and that the team representative who buzzed in first answers first.
5. Tell students that the game will officially begin! Use the Kingdom Self Quiz slide presentation of images to ask students to identify classification group/subgroup for the organisms pictured.
Students will often want to go through the images/questions twice because they want to see if they can recall them better the second time and this is a great way for students to test their knowledge and to provide opportunities for other questions as well: once students correctly answer the organism name/classification, you can prompt them to give more detailed information about characteristics using the correct scientific terminology. For example, once students see a picture of a mushroom and correctly answer that it is a fungus/basidiomycete, you can ask them what the cap is (a reproductive organ, the major way we classify fungus), what role fungus play in the food chain/web (a consumer/decomposer), more about its defining characteristics (its cell wall, septa, etc.) and how they compare to other organisms (for example, fungus cell walls are made of chitin while plant cell walls are made of cellulose).
An additional option is to allow students to come up with a few images of their own to add to the end of the slide presentation to quiz the entire class on as a large group. Giving this extended game option over the students is a great way for them to direct their learning and enhance engagement throughout the session as they try to cleverly stump each other on their kingdom knowledge!
1. Ask students to come back to the whole group.
2. Take any clarifying questions students might have about classification, kingdoms, and our major classification groups/subgroups.
- Note: I find students tend to ask about fungus and protists the most.With any extra time, you can continue to quiz them orally without the images, focusing specifically on any groups that students appeared to be struggling with during the game.
3. Remind students that tomorrow they will begin a unit project about the kingdoms and to be thinking about who they might want to work with for this upcoming activity.