Reflection: Staircase of Complexity Soil Secrets-Cabbage Chemistry! - Section 3: Small Group Instruction


While the concepts can be complicated, the chemistry experiments to illustrate them don’t need to be.  How do we break them down?  We do this by realizing there's just as much enjoyment and enriching knowledge that comes out of something simple.  To bring this concept of soil Ph to the student level, I did a great deal of scaffolding in this lesson.  Everything from connecting to prior knowledge to repeating new vocabulary to breaking down step by step directions helps make the material much more accessible.  Additionally, since I suspected the concept the soil Ph could be rather dry, I purposely chose a visual delivery of this concept to heighten the engagement of the students.  These elements of lesson design are all important to remember.  At the end of the day, Keep It Simple and Make It Fun both help access the complex ideas without increasing the complexity of the instruction.  Both guidelines sound obvious, though when we are working hard to translate the required material, they're easy to forget.  When we see an end product that become an enriching experiment by Scientists..our turns into an ideal classroom lesson for everyone!

  Lesson Design is Like a Puzzle
  Staircase of Complexity: Lesson Design is Like a Puzzle
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Soil Secrets-Cabbage Chemistry!

Unit 8: Guardians of the Ground
Lesson 4 of 8

Objective: Students will conduct an experiment to measure the acidity of their soil samples.

Big Idea: Why is it important to know a soil’s acidity?

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soil acid image
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