Today I want to engage my students in a discussion about the life of a worm. I am hoping my students can draw a picture that shows what they have learned about worms. At the end of the lesson they will show their picture and orally explain the details of their picture.
"Last week it rained and I saw a lot of little brown stringy wiggly things on the sidewalk. Does anyone know what those are? They wiggled all over. I was afraid to step on them. What? They are worms? Ewwww, what is a worm? Does anyone know? Where do they live? Let's talk about worms and what you know at them. I will put your answers on a circle map."
We discuss what a worm is and put their answers on a circle map.
"Hmmm, I don't know if we know everything there is about worms. Let's watch these videos and see what else we can find out about them."
There are five videos on this sight. We chose to watch the first four videos. We added a few more words to our circle map.
I find videos are an effective way to build background knowledge about the subject I am teaching. Videos are a great way to hook my students into wanting to learn more.
"Wow, it looks like worms are pretty important creatures. Let's read a story about them and learn some more."
"I want to read to you the book called Wonderful Worms. Listen carefully for things that the worm has and things the worm does."
We read through the story and stop to repeat what was written and to point out details in the pictures. I found I needed to reread some pages so they could understand what I read. They were amazed that they could dig without any hands. When we got to the part where the worms could not hear sound but felt it.
"Remember when the class on the floor above us moved all their desks across the room at the same time? We felt it and heard it. That was scary because we couldn't see what was happening."
My students laughed when they remembered the incident. One student asked, "is the worm scared like us?".
"No, the worm knows he is safe deep in the dirt. He just feels the movement.
"Was this a real story or a make believe story? Yes, it is real. How did you know it was a real story? Because it didn't tell a story it told us about real things. We call that non-fiction. Non-fiction books teach us a lot of interesting things."
"In the book Wonderful Worms, the story was real but pictures were not real. They were drawings that showed us what the sentences said. I want you to be illustrators and draw a very detailed picture of worms, just like in the book. Look at these pictures, look at all the details. I want you to go back to your tables and draw your detailed pictures of the worms."
"Paper passers will you please pass out the drawing paper to each place at the tables. Red row, walk carefully to get your pencil boxes. Orange row, green row, blue row and purple row, please walk carefully to get your pencil boxes. "
I walk around and prompt many of my students to draw using the five color rule. (They have to color nicely and with five different colors. Not just one color.) I encourage them to add more picture details.
When they are finished we gather on the carpet for a show and tell about their drawings. I like to give everyone the opportunity to stand up and orally explain their drawings. This part of the lesson is like a formative assessment. Did my students understand the assignment. Were they able to draw a detailed picture of things they learned from the book? Are they able to orally describe their drawing to the class? It is always fun to see their interpretation of the the story details.
I like to show a video of the story I read earlier to review content information and vocabulary.
I show the video at the end of the day after chairs have been stacked and backpacks are filled.