Separating Mixture: Reteach/Extend

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Students will be able to understand some of the background information about salt harvesting and the lives of the people that mine salt.

Big Idea

Investigate jobs and lives that focus on separation.

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Purpose of Lesson:

 The purpose of this lesson is to give students an extension activity that will allow them to explore more deeply lives and jobs spent using separation processes.

Major Strategies to Watch for:

1) Jigsaw reading extension- This lesson is a method to let students access a variety of texts in a short period of time and delve more deeply into one text.

2) Small Group Intervention- Using strategies to try to overcome misconceptions in student thinking. 


3 minutes

Learning Goal:  Examine the methods of harvesting salt from the earth. 

Opening Question:  Thinking about what you already know about separation of substances, what is your best guess on how people get salt from the Earth.

Students record their opening question on their learning goal sheet and are ready to start class 3 min after the bell has rung.  I reward students who get started early with ROCK STAR SCIENTIST tickets.  

Follow the links to learn more about the beginning of class strategies and ROCK STAR scientist tickets


5 minutes

This is a picture of salt panners.  Using the picture as evidence, what process do you think the people are using to harvest the salt from the water. 

Below is a screencast of what I would want students to notice in the picture.Unable to display content. Adobe Flash is required.


10 minutes

The purpose of this section is to show the students a separation method people use to harvest salt.  In the hook section, students tried to guess the process the salt panners were using from the picture.  Now we are going to watch the videos.  These videos are not narrated so I stop them often to let students know what is happening and ask questions and give students a chance to process together.  

Water pumped into a salt pan, Gujarat

This is a salt pan, Gujarat 


30 minutes

The purpose of this section is to give students a chance to extend their learning on separation methods.  Below are five different resources that students can use.  You can give students independent work time and ask them to make a product like a poster, animoto, chart, thinking map, or article.

Another way is to group students and do a Jigsaw activity. Start with grouping the students into heterogeneous groups of 4 or 5.  Together the students use a question matrix to ask questions about salt harvesting.  Each student chooses a different resource from the options below. 

1. Salt Panners 

2. Salt Mines

3. How salt is mined

4. Salt mining life

5. Salt production and processing

Now, you regroup the students into homogeneous groups.  Together the new groups read and decode the text, charting the information on the table to take back to their original group.  

Once students have had time to work in their group understanding their text, I then call for them to go back to their heterogeneous groups.  In this section they are now the experts.  Their job is to introduce all the students in the group to the resource and give them the main information.  


10 minutes

While students are working on the project I can pull small groups and work with students that did not show proficiency on the test.   Using the data from the test I can group students that have the same issue and work with them together. By using targeted interventions, I can try to correct misconceptions personally. A great practice for working with students in a small group is to use questions, prompts, and cues.  You can read more about this in this article by Nancy Frey and Doug Fisher.  


3 minutes

Closing Statement: Today we looked at the methods of harvesting salt and the lives of the people that work in that industry.

Closing Question:  What did you learn about harvesting salt today?

Closure depends greatly on timing and is not as easy to plan in advance as opening.  You can find more information about how I manage closure here.