Prior to the Lesson
Prepare Word Cards: Using small notecards write and place them in a magical looking hat.
analyze, classify, compare, conclusion, data, estimate, measure, count, experiment, hypothesis, infer, investigate model, predict, plan, question, share, variable, operational definition, and observe
All students need one copy of: Frayer Model Template
To warm up for our introductory unit and to help students become aware of scientific words they will be using to master NGSS standards, and to increase their vocabulary as demanded by CCSS, a "Word Wizard" will be chosen from the class to come up and draw three word cards from the hat.
We use the Frayer Model Sheet to help define these content based words as shown for you in this Frayer Model Example. The idea? For students to define words using their own paraphrasing and ideas. The concept of knowing what the word "isn't" helps them remember what the word is. Drawing symbols or pictures to help them remember what it looks like is a great way to define it in their minds. And finally, the "sounds like" should be a word that pops into their heads that rhyme...but of course is not related to the word. This helps students with phonics, spelling and visualization as well as another mnemonic device to help them absorb the word.
Everyday, three words will be drawn from the hat and then defined and then glued inside a section of their science notebook or kept in a science folder as a resource. It also can photographed and downloaded to their iPad for organization. This decreases their chance of losing the papers too!
If student's don't finish, this can be sent home to work on.
I choose three people to share an example from their model before we move into our core lesson.
After the warm up, I gather my whole group around the SB with their iPads, to watch this video. I present three questions I want them to think about as they view it to help satsify the NGSS standard 3.LS-1. This short glimpse of the work of the Jane Goodall team tells volumes about science, scientists, and conducting science in the field.
What change is this animal about to go through that tells us that it has grown and changed, and will grow and change again? (Supporting the understanding that organisms go through change during their life cycle in ways we often don't consider)
What can you infer from the video that tells us that scientists have had a role in creating this change? ( Supporting Drawing Conclusions)
What did you see that surprised you? (Supporting inquiry)
After I write the questions on the board, I instruct them to take a photo of the questions and transfer it to an Educreations page, make it small enough to write their answers next to each question. After they finish, they find a quiet spot in the room or hallway to read the questions and answers aloud, edit their sentences for capitalization, punctuation, and save their work.
When all are finished with saving their work, they come back to their desks to discuss their findings and understanding. We can share this work using Apple TV and the iPad as we share 5 student volunteer's work together.
Instruct: I tell my students that that we are going to understand more about Jane Goodall, the impact she has made as a scientist and learn to understand how she discovered how chimps form groups, grow and change in their life cycle as they adapt to survive.
I pair my students for a partner read using above grade level achieving readers with at to lower grade level achieving readers, to learn about Jane Goodall through a book. This is my students first exposure to research in fourth grade, so I provide a gathering grid to help them research to understand the concepts that the standards demand.
Explanation of My Gathering Grid for Protecting Primates: I explain to my students that it is important to develop questions before we start or mini- research. I explain that I have used Protecting Primates pages 14-20 for my questions listed on the grid, but want them to develop two questions that they think are important to be answered that prove how chimps are impacted by scientists or how they have changes they must deal with in their life cycle. I tell them that they may use their journals to note and collect any new vocabulary. I instruct them to use the strategy to read the questions together first and then answer the questions during reading. ( This supports EE expectations on the Danielson Rubric, level 4 in creating a more independent, student driven classroom)
I instruct them to sit on the floor in the room, elbow, elbow, knee, knee or EEKK! This arrangement helps them stay focused on their partner read and helps them keep each other on task. I instruct them to use their coaching and support strategies as they read together. If they stumble upon a word they cannot pronounce or understand, the student who is not reading asks them for "time" or "coach". If they choose time, the non-reading partner must wait as they figure the word out using reading strategies learned. If they choose "coach", then the partner may help them with the word.
*My below grade level achieving students must be supported through monitoring of the reading material, one on one interaction or small group instruction for this activity. *Brain Pop has a free Jane Goodall Movie that is another good RTI resource. I would substitute reading for this for my below grade level readers to speed up the research process for them and keep their attention on the goal of our lesson.
Assessing Through Presentation
After the classroom share, I assess them by looking at each of their grids as they choose to use either Haiku Deck, Educreations or Teach apps for their presentation. More technologically advanced students would benefit from Teach. Educreations is a good ap for all. But, for below grade level achieving language arts students, I suggest they use Haiku Deck.
Using the Gathering Grid, my students create a presentation using their findings and import photos or short movie clips about Jane Goodall that supports the questions on the gathering grid. It should have 5 to 6 pages.
This is the first research and presentation project, so I am not going to demand a cover page or introduction. I am expecting them to simply recreate their research in a visual presentation.