Next Generation Science Standard Connection
In this lesson the students create a survey based on their decision in the evaluation section of the previous lesson. The students determine the students' opinion about the equipment, surface, and location of a playground. Today we research surveys, and they design a survey that can be taken by their peers to determine what they think. In the next lesson the students analyze the data from the surveys.
This is about the fourth lesson in a unit about designing a solution to a problem. The first thing is to identify the problem based on the opinion of the class. Then we analyzed different solutions. Later the class researches the problem and solutions. Last they design a plan, and implement a plan to solve the problem.
I have two strategies that help my students persevere through complex task. I use transitions and heterogeneous ability groups. Students need to move around frequently, and they are social by nature. They can support each other and really enjoy helping each other.
First the class is seated in the lounge where we engage in the lesson. Then the students explore surveys, explain what they discover, and we begin an application activity in the elaborate section of the lesson. Finally, the students evaluate the surveys, and we determine which survey we will use and send home to the families.
The other great strategy is called heterogeneous ability groups, and I call them peanut butter jelly partners. The students work together to read, write, navigate the internet to explore surveys, and they work to support each other.
Now, I begin the lesson in the lounge where I excite my class, and it doesn't take much. I use a fun chant to get the class focused. Creating hands on opportunities that are relevant to the students lives really helps my students come to the lounge ready to learn. The other two things I do are assess the students' prior knowledge in regard to their knowledge of surveys, and they need to learn the plan for the lesson.
I begin by saying, "Look at the survey on the board. Tell your partner a time when you have seen a survey. If you used a survey go ahead and share what you were asked." I listen (students talking) to see if my students have ever seen a survey or used a survey.
Last, I share the plan for the lesson by saying, "Today we are going to research surveys. Then we are going to design a survey to give to a kindergarten class to determine what equipment, surface, and location they like on a playground. Then we will vote on which survey to use, and go to survey a class. Tomorrow we will analyze the data the survey gives us, and we will determine what they like."
Students research different surveys templates they might use. The survey needs to be illustrated in their science journal.
I begin by showing the class three possible surveys. I explain each survey as I put it on the board. I say, "Class we want to see which survey is best for our investigation. We want to see what equipment the students like best, what surface they prefer, and what locations the want." This helps students consider the survey designs (Playground Survey A, Playground Survey B, Playground Survey C) as I explain them.
Then, I walk around and monitor my students. Then I say, "Illustrate the survey (Student Work A and Student Work B) you think is best for our investigation. Consider the group we are surveying. The kindergarteners will need it read to them and easy to understand."
The class shares the model they think we could possibly use for the survey to send home to the families. Now the students share their surveys with the group opposite the table. The students should have an illustration of the survey in their science journal.
I say, "Go ahead and share the survey you illustrated in your science journal. You may also need to explain how you would specifically use the survey. Where would you put the possible problems? How would we know which problem they think is the biggest? Will you use yes or no? Are you going to ask them to circle the equipment they want? Should they have a list or pictures? Talk about these questions." Then I listen (students sharing). To keep the conversations going I do have to remind students by stopping in and asking them questions from my initial prompt. Students easily forget, because I there was a lot to consider in my initial prompt. I want to give them ideas to talk about, but not force the students to have a rigid conversation. I am just trying to give the student possible points to consider and discuss.
After the table discussions I try to get the entire class to share the surveys they found. This brings a great deal of information to the table to consider. I say, "Will a volunteer share the survey they selected?" After the student shares I ask them, "How will we use the survey?" Then I ask other students to share their survey.
Last, I say, "Talk at your table about which of the surveys we have looked out will best help us answer our question." Then I listen. I then allow each of my four tables to share the survey they think is best. Finally, each table shares the model they think is the best.
Now, that the class has shared all of the surveys they have selected I allow the students to work in pairs to create the survey they think is best on a poster board. Then they will present their poster in the evaluate section of the lesson. The class will eventually vote on the model we will use. Each pair presents their survey model, and the class votes on the best model.
I begin by saying, "Let me show you a model survey. Notice I have given it a title, directions are visible, and there are sections. Class I want you and you partner to determine which survey you think is best. Please illustrate the survey on the poster, label the parts, and prepare to explain how it will be used.You can use markers or crayons. Be sure your work is large enough to be seen by the entire class when you present." Now, my students are engaging in an application activity where they are creating a survey to assess their families opinion. This is very engaging, because it has a real purpose. It also includes the students community and family which they care about.
As the students work I walk around and observe their progress. I am looking to see that the surveys (student work A and student work B) are illustrated large enough that the entire class can see them when they are presented. The other thing I want to look for is a group that might be "stuck." In this case I stop and kneel down beside them. I ask in a kind voice, "Which survey do you think will work best? Look at your science journal. Is there one you like best?" I find that many students need to just be prompted to look at their notes. My ELL often need the instructions repeated or told in Spanish, so I often allow their peers to explain things in Spanish.
As the lesson winds down I ask the class to transition to the lounge and bring their poster. This is when each student presents their poster and explains how it will be used (sharing poster). Then we vote on which survey is the best, and that is the survey we send home to the families.
I begin by getting the class seated and listening. I ask my students to chant, "Criss cross apple sauce pockets on the floor, hands in our laps talking no more." Then I add, "We are seated listening, and we are ready to give our peers feedback."
A simple spreadsheet lets me know which group gets to present first. I check off who presented last, and we begin with the next person on the list. So, their group goes first.
The final task is for the class to vote on which survey is best (poster survey). I allow each child to hold up their poster one at a time. Then the others vote by raising their hands. The rule is you can only vote once, and they need to select the survey that will best help us find out what the kindergartners want.