Science Through Song

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Students will be able to identify matter vocabulary terms and summarize text.

Big Idea

This lesson will integrate language arts, music, and science concepts in order to help students explore and make meaning of states of matter terms.


5 minutes

Today's guiding questions will be:

What are properties of solids?

What are the properties of liquids?

What are the properties of gasses?

How can states of matter change?

I will have students turn and talk with their shoulder partners about these questions to prepare their minds for our lesson.

Mini Lesson

5 minutes

Beginning a lesson with a short clip or music is always engaging for students.  I will ask the students to listen to this video twice, the first time for enjoyment, and the second time for terms and facts. 

As the video plays a second time, I pause it after every one or two stanzas and ask students to share with their shoulder partner a fact they heard or a word they are unsure of. They song is long (3 minutes) and the second half is more complex than my third graders need.  However, I will play it all the way through to expose them to the terms and focus our lesson not the appropriate stanzas. 

Following our discussion, I will pass out Mr. Parr's lyrics with space for students to write. Their task will be to work on reading each stanza 3 times and then write what they think the "big idea" or main idea could be.

Active Engagement

25 minutes

While the students work, I will circulate and ask clarifying questions that will cause them to defend their thinking and push them to question.

This student explains to me why he wrote that solids keep their shape based on the text.  I also prepare him for the next stanza by asking him a question to guide his reading. 

As this student spoke with me, I found a way to discuss with her the "real life" of matter. I asked her to consider when, in her world, she tried to shape a liquid.  In doing this, I was able to model why science is an everyday topic. 

While working with this scientist, I was able to confirm her summaries and prompt her to use the text to answer a question and relate it to her life. 

Sharing and Close

5 minutes

To close the lesson, I simply asked students to share with their partner what they had written for the first 5 stanzas, and beyond, if they were able to accomplish more. I like to do this as a way of offering the students a natural opportunity to justify, debate, and revise thinking in an informal setting. 

There are times that I would share as a full class, but because there are so many ways of stating the same idea, I find sharing with a partner is more efficient.