Plaid Pete Is Modeling Earth's Systems Unit Review

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SWBAT use study strategies to review for the unit assessment on Earth's systems.

Big Idea

How do you study for a test? What are some strategies that can be easily used and will lead to success on assessments? Students learn how to use a study guide and games to review for the unit assessment.

Setting Up the Investigation

Connection to The Next Generation Science Standards

In this investigation, students finish the work that will lead them to explore the Disciplinary Core Idea of Earth's Systems:  Earth Materials and Systems -  that Earth's major systems are the geosphere (solid and molten rock, soil, and sediments), the hydrosphere (water and ice), the atmosphere (air), and the biosphere (living things, including humans).  These systems interact in multiple ways to affect Earth's surface materials and processes.  The ocean supports a variety of ecosystems and organisms, shapes landforms, and influences climate.  Winds and clouds in the atmosphere interact with the atmosphere to determine patterns of weather.  (5-ESS2-1); The Roles of Water in Earth's Surface Processes:  Nearly all of Earth's available water is in the ocean.  Most fresh water is in glaciers or underground:  only a tiny fraction is in streams, lakes, wetlands, and the atmosphere.  (5-ESS2-2)  and the Crosscutting Concept of Systems and System Models  - A system can be described in terms of its components and their interactions (5-ESS2-1), and Scale, Proportion, and Quantity - Standard units are used to describe and measure physical quantities such as weight and volume (5-ESS2-2)

The Preparation Time for This Investigation is approximately 15 minutes.

Materials Needed:

Plaid Pete Is Modeling Earth's Systems - Jeopardy Review (Powerpoint)

One copy for each student of Plaid Pete Is Modeling Earth's Systems Unit Review - Study Guide - Lesson 14

One copy of Plaid Pete Is Modeling Earth's Systems Unit Review - Study Guide Answer Key - Lesson 14

Focus & Motivation

5 minutes

Rallying My Students for Assessment

I tell my students that two days from now will be a big day - they will get to show all they have learned about Earth's Systems!

I ask my students, "Do you remember the strategies I have taught you previously about how to study to prepare for a test?"  I accept student answers.  I am not surprised when there are a few students who don't seem to remember.  I know that many of my students need repeated practice!  

I tell them that today, we will practice strategies that I have previously taught them.  It won't be too much longer before it is the end of their 5th Grade year.  I want them to have some strategies to take with them into middle school.

Pair Activity

45 minutes

Introduce Study Guide

I pass out copies of the Plaid Pete Is Modeling Earth's Systems Unit Review - Study Guide - Lesson 14 to each student.  We look it over and I point out how each of the sections reference the lessons we have been working on.  I note how the lessons are in order.  We quickly go through and I have them write down the pages in their Science Notebooks that pertain to those lessons.  I know that if I do not narrow the focus for them, they will get "lost in their notes" and will be unable to locate this information.

I pair each student with their Science Partner.  This is the person that I have paired them with by rank ordering my class by reading ability, and then paired the top student with the student in the middle (e.g. #1 with # 13, #2 with #14) and so on so that there is not a huge gap between the two partners.  I set them to work filling in the blanks on their study guide, telling them they will use this study guide to play a team game for points - and the winning team gets a prize!  This year's team played for a jolly rancher.

I set students to work, telling them they will only have 45 minutes to complete this task, so they will need to stay focused!  I keep my Plaid Pete Is Modeling Earth's Systems Unit Review - Study Guide Answer Key - Lesson 21 handy, as I circulate among pairs and assist as needed.

I have to pull my class back together when we get to the section on convection currents.  This is particularly difficult for my students and I want to be sure that they review it well.

Team Activity

30 minutes

Introduce Jeopardy

Some of my students have forgotten the format of Jeopardy, so I pull up a You Tube clip so they can understand how to participate.  I explain how the answer is really the question.

I then explain the categories and the rules.  Each of my 5 teams will get their turn in order.  if they answer incorrectly, the question passes to the next team, who has the opportunity to "steal" and receive the points.  The team with the most points at the end of the game is the winner.  

Teams work together to come up with a team name that has something to do with the topic of Earth Systems.  They come up with some very creative names!  We have "The Lithificators" and "The Tectonics."  I have written the numbers 1-5 on craft sticks, and call the team leaders up.  They each choose a stick to determine the order of play.

I explain that all of the answers are on their Study Guides, so it is important to keep them handy, so that they can correct any errors they might have.  I tell team leaders it is their job to make sure that they have checked the answer after each slide, to be sure that it is correctly recorded on each team member's sheet.  I have to monitor this carefully to ensure that students are taking home correct answers to study.

Begin the Game

I begin the Plaid Pete Is Modeling Earth's Systems - Jeopardy Review and my students are completely engaged in the activity - a second time!  They have been begging for this since our What's The Matter Plaid Pete Unit.

Reflection & Closure

5 minutes


It comes down to the Final Jeopardy Question - with The Lithificators only 500 points behind - and they risk it all.  Unfortunately, they couldn't pull out the win, and The Tectonics prevail!


We congratulate the winning team.  I explain to my students that what they just did - was study!  I ask for students to turn and talk to the person next to them and explain the two strategies that they just practiced (again!) that they could try and use on their own with just about any content area topic to study for a test.

I accept answers and confirm that, Yes, they can 1) create a study guide by writing out sentences like I did from their notes, but leave blanks for the important words and phrases, and 2) make a up some kind of game to review the information.

Introduce Strategy for Vocabulary

Next, I tell my students that I have a strategy for them to help them study for the vocabulary section.  My students mostly are not familiar with the game "Password."  I review the directions with them on the link to briefly explain the game and tell my students, "You will be using the vocabulary cards from your Science notebooks to play this.  You will need to take all of your cards out of the envelopes you have placed them in."  I give my students time during their "Do Now" activity here at school, to play.  

I also encourage them to work with a parent or a partner at home to review, playing the game Memory (I review the directions with them from the link).  We will write the assignment to review both the Study Guide and the Memory for homework for both tonight and tomorrow night.  If my students do their part - they should be ready to show what they know!