Reflection: Problem-based Approaches Real Life Measurement - Section 1: Inclusion


As I look back at this lesson, I acquired a lot of information about my students' knowledge of plants, strategies to record growth, and their depth of knowledge in measurement for real purposes. I walked around the room listening to all the groups discuss the questions. 

One table talks about how hot the classroom gets when the air is turned off and they believe the plants would not survive over the weekend.  They also discuss the lack of natural light in the classroom - and that last year our plants didn't survive very long (LS2.A Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems and LS2.B cycles of Matter and Energy Transfer in Ecosystems).  Because I teach a multiage 4th and 5th grade classroom, half of my students cycle with me from 4th to 5th and I receive new 4th graders.

As I pass another table, I notice students drawing in their science notebooks.  They are planning how to record the plants' possible growth, on a daily basis.  They plan to record growth the first thing every morning, so they would have an accurate measurement (control variable).  I ask this group how they plan to measure the plants, and their answer is, "With a ruler."  So I gave them a ruler with US Customary and Metric measurements and although I move to another group I'm still tuned into that discussion. They go on to discuss which side of the ruler they should use. 

I find students' discussion moving from the science of plants to measurements - they are reasoning abstractly and quantitatively (MP2) by listening and giving each other feedback (MP3).

While reflecting on this part of my lesson, I realize how important this short period of time was for all of us and our learning.  I notice all students engaged and participated in discussion - if not at first but by the end of the 5 minutes.  I learn many of my fourth grade students didn't understand millimeters and centimeters are the same measurements, while many of my cycling 5th grade students can measure with centimeters and millimeters.  I also adjust my lesson, because many of the students accurately create charts to measure their plants. 

  Teacher Reflection
  Problem-based Approaches: Teacher Reflection
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Real Life Measurement

Unit 4: Measurement
Lesson 1 of 3

Objective: Students will be able to measure in fractions of an inch and record plant growth tying math and science together.

Big Idea: Recording and analyzing plant growth over time is a natural and real world connection to representing and interpreting data.

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