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Showing posts with label NGSS. Show all posts
Showing posts with label NGSS. Show all posts

5 E Lesson Planning Time

If you have seen my Instagram lately, you might have seen that I have been in Texas. I have been learning about how to utilize the 5E model within my science classroom! I love that teachers can incorporate this instructional model using any science kit or program you use.  This plan is an easy way for us to help our students gain a better understanding of the new concepts we are presenting them with. This is because this format is really an inquiry-based approach to learning.

The five E-Model lesson format that I am sharing with you today will help you focus on allowing your students to get a better understanding of your concepts because it is allowing you an organized way to establish a series of steps that include: Engagement, Exploration, Explanation, Elaboration, and Evaluation! This model will really allow you to let your students gain knowledge through experiences because it is active learning. They are discovering and experiencing because you have built in inquiry, the ability to explore and then assess their understanding when the time is finished.

What is different for me as a develop as a science teacher is I have to become a facilitator instead of a sage on the stage. I am learning this year, to really guide my students through the concepts I need to cover in class.

I created this 5E template that I will be using this year to guide me through this new approach. Grab your free copy here!
Grab the free 5E Lesson Plan Templates here!

If you are interested in some of the books that I have used for my professional development...here are my top three books! Press on the book to take you to the source I used! I love using picture books to get my students engaged!

Let's make science, child's play!

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STEM St. Patrick's Day Stations

It is finally March. I sure hope the snow starts to melt. We have over 30 inches of snow so spring can't come too soon! I am teaching an after school STEM class and one of my favorite times to teach this is right around ST. Patrick's Day where we can win with some hands-on pot-o-gold activities.

The first activity that we do is the Somewhere Over The Rainbow catapults! Giving my students the tongue depressors, rubber bands, and Yellow Pompoms along with rainbow patterns that they have to catapult over is a great "croquet" like game that becomes a fun competition.

The second activity that we love to do is the Pot-O-Gold Wall Maze. We give them toilet paper tubes, Paper towel tubes, and masking tape along with yellow pompoms and a cup with a pot-o-gold pattern / or pots of gold from the Dollar Store.

Pot-O-Gold Fun with Toilet paper tubes!
The fun part about this activity is that they get so excited to compete against other teams to see who can get to the pot of gold first. I always throw in they have to use the same amount of tubes as well as so many turns or changes of direction (usually 2-3) depending on the grade level.
Somewhere Over the Rainbow!

Up, Up Panda Away with pulleys!

With my older students I like to have them make pulley systems called Up Up Panda Way...our little St. Patrick's Day Panda's love the free ride...while the littles love to make Leprechaun hats to take home!

Shamrock Shakes in progress!

Ready to shake it up!
The finale...Shamrock Shakes! We make instruments and then play them along with a fun Irish jig! The kids love to dance along to it as well! Here is one of the jigs we play along to! Irish Jig found HERE!

Time for you to create some shenanigans with your students! Join the fun by developing STEM students with STEM-velops in envelopes, folders, packs, buckets...FIND the St. Patrick's Day Activities Today HERE!

Time For St. Patrick's Day Fun for everyone! Happy March, Friends! I hope you find your pot of gold!

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Constellations and Star Activities

I have always loved this activity and I wanted to share this quickly in a post! I love tasty science lessons and when you can get fourth graders excited about writing and science together it is a win/win! Can I just say POPCORN CONSTELLATIONS! Yes, popcorn constellations!

Here's how it goes...

I start with a quick discussion about some super stars we will be learning about today...the constellations! I share with them the video Crash Course Super Stars!

While I do that I set out a piece of black paper for each child, along with a white crayon (or chalk), a note card with lines, and a Dixie Cup of popcorn.

Once the video is done, I let them know that we
will be making Popcorn Constellations. I demonstrate, by tossing the popcorn onto the paper, too many pieces makes it harder for them to find a figure...I then pick up a piece and pop it into my mouth! I replace it with a white star mark to show where the popcorn once was. I continue to do that until I eat all the popcorn and have white stars on my paper. I then turn the paper in all directions until I see something. I then devise a story as to how the constellation got there in the sky.

I then send them back to do the same thing on their own papers. I love how they try to help each other figure out what they see. Some are easier than others, some may need a bit of help.

When they are through with their stories, we share the title or the story with each other. While we are waiting for the class, I let them figure out their zodiac sign and read a kid friendly horoscope. We compare it to a fortune cookie or the paper at a Chinese restaurant. 

I then complete my lesson by sharing an activity with flashlights comparing the closeness of stars and their brightness. We can all be super stars with this one!
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9 Strategies For Teaching Moon Phases

The moon phases are one of my favorite lessons to teach. I think it is a wonderful challenge to teach students a strategy that would allow them tricks to remembering the phases! I also love all of the activities and games that can enhance the learning of another cycle and pattern in the solar system!

I have Nine Great Strategies for you that will help your students learn the cycles in a fun and engaging way!

Strategy 1: Moon Phase Trick

Here is a trick for remembering the moon phases:

Hold up both thumb nails. Show them that on left hand we will call it waxing, wax on by doing a circle motion, on your right we call that waning and we will do a circle motion wane off.
Now back to the thumb nails, on the left hand (wax on) the nail is on the right side of the thumb nail. This will always be the first hand (1st quarter) and always be waxing crescent or gibbous. 

On the right nail it reminds you that it is a waxing hand, on the left side of the nail is the white crescent or waning crescent or waning gibbous. It helps remind us is it waxing  (left hand) or waning (right hand).

Then you tell them to ask questions, is it full or new? Waxing or Waning? Big or little? Half? Left or right hand.  

Strategy 2: Moon Phase Calendar

Use a moon phase calendar to question students on which day them might see a specific phase. I use this site because the pictures are more defined: Moon Phase Calendar

I ask questions such as, "One one day of the month would you see a waxing gibbous?", or "On which day is there a first quarter moon?" We also look at it to help us see patterns during the months and the 29 day cycle.

Strategy 3: Moon Phase Interactive Notebook

I want my kiddos to match words with the moon phases to understand their vocabulary.
We use a little interactive notebook sheet that helps us place the words underneath the pictures and add it to our notebooks!

Strategy 4: Moon Phase Memory (Freebie)

I love adding a game for my students to play and learning the moon phases lends itself perfectly to memory! So I created two Moon Phase Memory Games that I placed in my Free Resource Library! Just sign up for my newsletter and you will get the secret code that is filled with  great free resources!
              This resource is also found in my Moon Phase Pack in my Store!

Strategy 5: Moon Phase Anchor Chart

I create an anchor chart that will allow my students to review, use as a guide when they play the memory games, when they create the interactive notebook page, when they play the Calendar review game...you get the picture, creating an anchor chart can be very versatile!

 Strategy 6: Moon and Earth Revolution Model

I always like to review the cycles and patterns that we have already learned, and with that to show the big picture I like to create a model for the students to use that gives them a great visual as to how the moon revolves around the Earth and the Earth Revolves around the Sun as we rotate!

This is a perfect activity to review the vocabulary words revolve and rotate! All you need is a pattern of the Earth, moon, and sun in proportion, scissors, glue, and two paper fasteners per student.

Strategy 7: Styrofoam Moon Phase Demonstration or Simulation

I found this great idea from the National Science Teacher's Association on a search I did that demonstrates how to use a Styrofoam ball and a pencil to show how the phases of the moon work using a light and the ball! This is a great addition to the Moon Phase lesson and a perfect visual!

Strategy 8: Moon Phase Digital Games

I love using Google Drive and Digital Science Activities such as The Moon Phases to assess where my students are in their understanding of a given topic. I can use them individually by giving them each a qr code to create their own copy, or I also use them as a whole group activity where I project the game or review cards on the Smartboard! Either way has worked perfectly for a review, test, game, challenge...

Strategy 9: Moon Landing STEM Activity

I love reading the story, One Giant Leap and then show this video!

We finish it up by create a moon landing of our own! I give each team a tray with 6 toilet paper and paper towel tubes (the path) , a marble (the Apollo Space Craft), Tape, and a pattern of the moon and Earth.

They have to make a path on the wall that has three bends, and gets the marble safely from Earth to the moon! They love this challenge. This is one of five challenges in my STEM Space Stations Pack!

Want to find these ideas, sheets, activities, and a few bonus activities all in one place ready for you to just print and go? Check out my moon phase packs by following this link: Moon Phase Science Pack and STEM Connections

I appreciate you to the moon and back!

Summer School Can Be Cool!

Summer is now here and I am just got done with school... now it's time for Summer School Community Connections. This means I get the kids after they are in the morning session and now it is the afternoon. For me my Community Connection is STEM garden club. In the past I have taught strictly  Garden Club, but after seeing their exhausted faces after not only going to school 9 months out of the year with such rigor, I could not put them through any more let's learn a ton from a book or go outside for an hour and connect to nature. That is when I see discipline issues...when they just can't take anymore learning. 

 Let's just say this Monday, I was a little nervous because I saw these kids goofing around and not focus in the gym as I went to get them. It was kind of scary they weren't my students from my school...they were at MY school...and they were not having any of the I am going to be a listener thing!

 These kiddos are  not used to STEM activities so the test was going to be whether or not they could handle calming down and focusing and using their brain to build something absolutely amazing...absolutely summer centered... and garden connected!

Three Easy Steps to make Heredity or Learned Behavior Connections

We are starting our plant unit shortly after break. It is my favorite time of year! Teaching my 400 students about the power of a garden is thrilling. Even better when I can use our FOSS Insect and Plants units,  as well as NGSS standards in my lessons is perfect!

How can you take NGSS standards and time it into a reading lesson, writing lesson, or even your own science curriculum can be easy with these simple steps.

STEP 1: Find NGSS standards that tie into your curriculum

I have to teach plants and insects so finding a way to teach this with an activity is key! I have to teach these concepts so they are in FOSS and in NGSS. This is the connection I am seeking! 

 For first grade a perfect connection can come with the Heredity: Inheritance and Variation of Traits Standard for 1st grade. This sounds quite complicated, but here is a simple way to do that.

The standard states, "make observations to construct an evidence-based account that young plants and animals look like, but not exactly like,  their parents."

This strand is repeated again in 3rd grade with the same standard, however they add, "analyze and interpret data to provide evidence that plants and animals have traits inherited from parents and that variations of these traits exist in a group of similar organisms."

Step 2: Find an activity that will allow your students to see the standards in action or help them make a visual connection

Now, what to do. I came up with a simple lesson for you to tie a fun activity to both grade levels!

Let's make bugs! All you need is three body shapes...I chose triangles, circles, and hearts. I cut them out of colored paper...all the same color I might add. 

Next, make shapes for the top, you could also make wings, but we discuss how some insects have colorful exoskeletons. 

Now, it's time to cut out legs. I have the students get three and cut them in half after we discuss that insects have 6 legs.

Finally, I buy puff balls for the kids to pick as eyes.  

I get the kiddos into groups of two. I call each student one and two. One's go and get their bug parts: 1 body, 1 top piece, 3 legs to cut in half, and two eyes. Twos can now come up. To get them thinking differently, they can come up as a team picking if they want to be the same or different. You can even shake dice and evens mean you are the same and odds are you are different!

Once bugs are glued together, time to make the baby bug. Ones are the mother bug, and twos are the daddy bug. To set up the cards, print pieces that state mom's body, dad's body, new body. I have included the cards as a freebie below!!!

I then glue them on a colored paper. Each part is on a different color. They take turns picking the parts and going to the designated spot for the baby bug parts. 

The best part is that they are able to compare how their baby has inherited certain traits from the parents! Refer back to the NGSS standards to connect what they now know!

Step 3: Pull it all together with a vocabulary review or quiz

We made an anchor chart with the definitions and examples that we came up with. I also have cards made up that we put on the correct part of our chart. These sheets can be found in my Heredity Pack on TPT. 
The perfect pack for teaching NGSS Heredity Standards! HERE

I find that my students, in any grade that I teach, struggle with the Tier 3 words. New words need visuals and they need to be repeated, displayed, manipulated...the more exposure they get to the science terms the more retention you will see! So when you can add an art related project that can really show vocabulary words that time to NGSS standards...then you are set!

The NGSS standards that I focus on are:

1-LS- 3: Make observations to construct an evidence-based account that young plants and animals are like, but not exactly like their parents. 

3-LS3-1.  Analyze and interpret data to provide evidence that plants and animals have traits inherited from parents and that variation of these traits

Thanks for stopping by...You can find the cards and quiz freebie HERE!

This activity is a perfect way to tie in your insect unit with NGSS first and 3rd grade standards! The freebie can also be found in the large heredity pack HERE!


Oviparous Animals: Hatching a Great Science Lesson

As I plan ahead to next week, I am always thinking about what is on my road map. The plan that is in place for me and how much time do I have until spring break! I wonder if you are thinking those same things???

Most of my friends are busy planning their math lesson and their reading lesson. Some of my poor friends are locked into making sure that they are on the same page as their grade level partners. That is never easy...but how many of you are saying to yourselves what am I planning for Science next week?

Well...think about your reading lesson!

How can your reading lesson lend itself to a science connection?

To play off of Dr. Seuss Week...Horton Hatches an Egg was a perfect example of how I was able to engage my kindergartners to learn about oviparous animals. Let's just say it is a perfect way to take any book about eggs and make it work!!

Here is how I did it!

1. I grabbed some Easter Eggs and printed off my animal cards. I folded the oviparous animals and I took 6 eggs of the same color and put one picture into each egg. I did that for four colors. Giving me 24 eggs. One for every kindergartner.

2. I hid them in the room...easy access and then I had them gather at the carpet. I let them know that we were going to learn a very BIG word today. We practiced over and over. Then we went to the anchor chart where we made a list of animals that hatch from eggs.

3. I then read my Egg themed book! I then told them we were going to search for one egg to bring to a group. All orange was going to be one group...yellow another....and so on. We shared the rules: no running, no opening the egg until the baby was ready to hatch, and no getting an egg for anyone else...everyone needs to find their own egg and ONLY ONE!

4. I then let them find an egg. We gathered in color groups. I had a colored paper egg for them to go to so that they knew where to go! I then told them that I would come around to each next to tap them on the shoulder so that they could hatch their egg. The person tapped could then open it and share an animal with the group that hatches ...making it an oviparous animal!

5. When the team was done hatching all of the eggs we put the papers back in and put them in my egg basket. We all joined at the carpet.

6. We went back to the anchor chart to see what we could add and to look at any misconceptions. We then played the digital google interactive game on the smartboard! I will tell you that my littles love this! Drag and drop! The made the connections and we were able to review what they learned.

               Grab Your Oviparous Animal Pack just in time for Spring! The lesson plan is already for you!
Find This Resource HERE!

This is an EGG-cellent way to welcome Spring!

Marvelous Magnets...FOSS...NGSS... and More!

We just finished up our FOSS Magnet portion of the kit that we need to cover in fourth grade each year. I love the activities and supplies that FOSS offers, but at times the fun of magnets is lost in the FOSS lessons. Our science standards that we are using in our city are based on 1991 standards from our state. This seems a bit outdated even though many of these concepts are seen in the new NGSS standards. Because our state has not adopted these new standards I like to take what we already have to do and integrate the new NGSS standards where ever I can.

The great thing about magnets also is that the 3rd grade NGSS science standards of Forces and Interactions fit perfectly within the FOSS Magnet unit. 3-PS2-3 has students: ask questions to determine cause and effect relationships of electric or magnetic interactions between two objects not in contact with each other. So for example you could have students take two permanent magnets and see the relationship between steel paperclips with one magnet vs. the relationship between two magnets and those same steel paperclips. FOSS gives you the magnets, but how you use them to cover other standards is the key.

You can also use the FOSS lesson of the farther apart magnets are the weaker the force...by testing and using the NGSS standards to prove the cause and effect relationships and how they culd show that the distance between objects affects strength of the force and how they orientation of  magnets affects the direction of the magnetic force.

Using what they know about magnets can help you figure out how to take the curriculum that you have and how you can add the NGSS standards to existing lessons. Here is what I did...

As I focused on creating extensions of our magnet unit, I focused on 3-P S2-4. I created one of the activities that students can create a simple game design that can solve a problem as they apply scientific ideas about magnets. Maybe they could make a game that uses a latch to keep something shut or create a game that can keep two moving objects from touching each other... this then takes once again the FOSS Magnet section and extends it with activities that tie in NGSS standards.

There is only one real way to teach them effectively with whatever standards you are working with...hands-on. Loving the magnets of FOSS, but not loving the lack of fun interactive activities...I made my own! When the students were done exploring the different lessons I had to do... such as permanent magnet interactions with a bag of objects to discovering the forces of attraction and repulsion there is so much more you can do with these concepts they could work on stations that were set up around the room.

What I loved to see was how they worked hard to make sure that their FOSS sheets were done (requirement before they got to pick a station in the room...) You might also see in some of my activities that we did...we used the idea that FOSS had, but made it more kid friendly and connected it with their lives. This connections help them understand the WHY of why they are learning about magnets! Check out the activities and stations that were set out for my students to choose from!

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