Reflection: Lesson Planning Aren't All Jungles Hot? - Section 2: Engage


I really work hard to make my lessons and units build upon one another. I believe it shows so much more to the students when this happens.  In the beginning of the school year, the children really do not pick up on the subtleties of the lessons.  However, as the year goes on and the lessons become more and more defined and connected to each other, they begin to see the connections.  

I really want this to happen, I want them to be aware that science is connected to everything in the world and that learning is not a start and stop process.  But rather one that is a continuous motion that continues to tie itself in so many different directions.  For this reason, I purposely chose to have the children read an article about the birth of the Amazon River at the end of the Freshwater unit. The article is about the headwaters of this river. Even though it is read during a previous lesson, it offers new knowledge for that lesson and supplies background knowledge for an upcoming lesson.  

It is a fine dance to play when looking for just the right element of literature that supplies the knowledge you are looking for in lesson design.  When it all comes together, there is simply no better feeling for the teacher and the students.  

In fact, I can testify that when this happens in my classroom, it generally takes five to ten minutes for the students to get all their connections out of their systems before we can move on.  They are so excited to share and explain what they know about the connections and how they are connected that I just cannot bare to pass it up.  It is very validating to them and to me as well.  It shows me that they truly did learn the material before and they are proving they have the knowledge well in their grasp.  

  Scaffolding the Learning
  Lesson Planning: Scaffolding the Learning
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Aren't All Jungles Hot?

Unit 8: Unit 8 - Rain Forest
Lesson 1 of 11

Objective: SWBAT gather important information to determine the differences between tropical and temperate rain forests.

Big Idea: Learning to weed through information and determining what is important research and what is not relevant is not easy. The lesson uses the theme of the Rain Forest to practice through the differences between tropical and temperate forests.

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Science, Photosynthesis, ecosystem, Predation, rainforest, soil
  65 minutes
jungle map
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