To begin the lesson I ask students to get out their science journal so that they can begin with a brainstorm to warm up their brain. Once they are ready, I ask them to draw a life cycle that they have learned. I reassure them that they can get as many parts or pieces that they remember about a specific life cycle. I give the class a few minutes to draw their life cycle into their journal.
We then discuss the few cycles that they came up with. As the class shares, I ask the others to confirm or give feedback on each life cycle we talk about to make sure we have good details. I notice that from this activity most students can discuss the life cycle of a butterfly and of a frog. To push their thinking, and to also increase the vocabulary needed to understand life cycles, I give them a question to ponder. I ask the class to tell me the basic (key word basic) life cycle of a human. Students begin talking about toddlers and teenagers, they even throw out the idea of tween. I then ask them to think of it in a more basic sense. I want to know where do we start. I then will add each phase at a slower pace as I prompt them along.
With the establishment of the human life cycle, I ask them to read with me the vocabulary we used. We begin as infants, then move through a growth phase, we become adults, and then begin to decline as we get older. I go over that this is the basic cycle of life for all living things. To prove it, I ask them to help through the stages of a flowers life cycle. When we finish, I go through and look for out infant-growth-adult-decline pattern.
With confirmation that the plant life cycle does follow our pattern. I ask the class to work in pairs to determine how plant and animals life cycles are similar and different. They can complete their comparisons using a Venn diagram. I ask the class to work on the diagram in their science journal. THey can brainstorm and add their thoughts initially to a white board and place their finished product into their journal. We then discuss what they came up with by collecting each groups ideas in a class Venn diagram on our white board. The class can then confirm and correct each other as they work through their understanding of life cycles.