Reflection: Data Analysis Plant Parts PreAssessment - Section 3: Exploration: Tending the Garden


Pre-assessment must be purposeful and inform your instruction.  In this lesson, pre-assessment took many forms.  First, the pre-assessment was an engaging activity where students cut out plant parts and created a diagram.  I did not expect students to struggle with this task, and as expected, students were able to correctly label the basic external parts of a flower.  

The true pre-assessment took place through informal discussions.  While circulating during the activity, I asked deeper question that moved towards the standard, which focuses on the function of external parts in helping the plant grow and survive.  These pop-in discussions were not threatening to students, like a quiz or extended written response might be.  Instead, through conversation, I learned what students knew about plant part functions.  For example, only one student in the class knew that the leaf makes food for the plant; however, he could not elaborate or tell what that meant.  All other students were either baffled or said the leaves bring in water.  Conversely, most students knew that roots bring water into the plant.  When we get to the roots lesson, this means I can focus more on how roots anchor the plant into the soil and pull nutrients from the soil.

The third type of pre-assessment in this lesson came from the Schema file.  By grouping post-it notes into categories, it's pretty easy to see what the class is comfortable wit already and what areas we need to address.

  Data Analysis: Assessing student background knowledge
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Plant Parts PreAssessment

Unit 5: Plants: Parts, Parents, Patterns
Lesson 1 of 12

Objective: SWBAT demonstrate prior knowledge of external parts of plants.

Big Idea: Before planting a garden, we must see what type of soil we have to work with! Do your students know the parts of a seed and plant?

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23 teachers like this lesson
Science, plants, pattern, seed, leaves
  40 minutes
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