Reflection: Diverse Entry Points Plaid Pete Puts the "Fair" in Test! - Section 2: Focus & Motivation


I became familiar with the concept of "social stories" because I have a son who has autism.  Social Stories were originally developed by Carol Gray in 1991, as a way to assist people who had autism spectrum disorders in the development of social skills.  Social Stories as originally defined by Gray "describe a situation, skill, or concept in terms of relevant social cues, perspectives, and common responses, in a specifically designed style and format."  

I also learned about the idea of beginning Science instruction with a catchy "scenario" or problem set during my training with The North Cascades Olympic Science Partnership, a three year professional development opportunity that was funded through a National Science Foundation Grant.  The Plaid Pete Science Social Scenarios are a combination of these two ideas.  I wanted a way to engage my students, introduce new content ideas, and to address classroom attitudes and behaviors that would lead to a successful community of learners. 

Look for these scenarios to branch out in the two remaining units this year to address additional classroom expectations, both social/behavioral and academic.  I have a number of students with attention deficit disorders, and social stories are a great tool for use in teaching these students skills and strategies.  Please feel free to download the scenarios and insert your own students' names - the engagement you will see in your classroom when they see their names, and their classmates' names on paper - is nothing short of amazing!  You can find resources about Social Stories at the following link:  PBIS World.

I have included all of the scenarios for the entire Plaid Pete series in these links by unit: What's The Matter Plaid Pete? - Lab Scenarios; Plaid Pete Discovers What Matters in Ecosystems - Lab Scenarios; Plaid Pete Engineers A Solution - Lab Scenarios; Plaid Pete Is Modeling Earth's Systems - Lab Scenarios; and Plaid Pete is Finding Earth's Place in the Universe - Lab Scenarios.

  Diverse Entry Points: Science Social Scenarios
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Plaid Pete Puts the "Fair" in Test!

Unit 3: Plaid Pete Engineers A Solution
Lesson 10 of 10

Objective: SWBAT collaboratively plan and carry out fair tests in which variables are controlled and failure points are considered, to identify aspects of a model or prototype that can be improved.

Big Idea: How does a prototype design change through multiple trials? Students redesign their water filtration systems, and redesign again; coming to understand how the iterative process of engineering design improves an original prototype through trial and error.

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2015 03 20 13 52 54
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