• monday-1.jpg April 15th

    LEAP Review Day

    Students will be reviewing questions from Atoms and Molecules to review for the LEAP Test
    Tuesday-1.jpg April 16th

    LEAP Review Day

    Students will be reviewing questions from Thermal Energy to review for the LEAP Test

    Wednesday-1.jpg April 17th

    LEAP Review Day

    Students will be reviewing questions from Plate Motion/Geology on Mars to review for the LEAP Test

    thursday-1.jpg April 18th

    LEAP Review Day

     

    Students will be reviewing questions from Natural Selection/Natural Disasters to review for the LEAP Test

    friday-1.jpg April 19th

    LEAP Review Day

    Students will be reviewing questions from Evolutionary History as well as questions from the other units to review for the LEAP Test
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  • monday-1.jpg April 8th

    Evolutionary History Lesson 3.1

    1: Warm-Up (10 min.)

    Students are asked to consider more complex evolutionary trees in order to explore how species descended from a common ancestor have branched from one another.

    2: Modeling Evolutionary Relationships with K'NEX (20 min.)

    Students participate in a physical modeling activity in order to understand that multiple branch points on an evolutionary tree result in uniquely shared structures between more closely related species. This provides an On-the-Fly Assessment of students' facility with the practice of developing and using models.

    3: Modeling Shared Structures in Common Ancestors (15 min.)

    Students use the Modeling Tool to model distinctive similarities in body structures and show how those similarities may be organized within evolutionary trees.

    4: Homework

    Students return to the K'NEX® evolutionary tree to practice finding shared structures and determining relatedness. They also read a short article that explains how paleontologists study embryos to help them better understand evolution.

    Tuesday-1.jpg April 9th Evolutionary History Lesson 3.2
    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students practice looking for diagnostic shared structures to determine which species are more closely related.

    (Teacher Only) How Paleontologists Determine Relatedness Video (5 min.)

    An animation helps students visualize some of the processes paleontologists use to determine relatedness.

    2: Investigating the Relatedness of Extinct Whales (20 min.)

    Students focus on the Cetacean tree in the Sim to find examples of important shared structures and to see how they are used to determine the relationships among a group of species.

    3: Word Relationships (15 min.)

    Students use vocabulary to reflect on important concepts about relatedness from Chapter 3. This provides an On-the-Fly Assessment of students' understanding of how to determine relatedness between species.

    4: Homework

    Students use the Evolutionary History Sim to explore two extinct species of carnivora and learn about some of this group's important structures.

    Wednesday-1.jpg April 10th Evolutionary History Lesson 3.3
    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students receive a final message from the museum director, asking for their final arguments about where the Mystery Fossil belongs in the museum.

    2: Considering Similar Structures (15 min.)

    Students consider information about various shared structures among the Mystery Fossil, whales, and wolves in order to understand more about similar structures as well as new structures that are unique to some but not all of the three types of organisms.

    3: Examining Diagnostic Structures (20 min.)

    Students carefully consider a set of structures that are uniquely shared between either whales and the Mystery Fossil or wolves and the Mystery Fossil in order to determine which type of organism the Mystery Fossil is more closely related to. This provides an opportunity for an On-the-Fly Assessment of students' understanding of how to identify diagnostic structures to determine relatedness.

    4: Placing the Mystery Fossil on the Evolutionary Tree (5 min.)

    Students complete a section of an evolutionary tree diagram containing whales and wolves and place the Mystery Fossil on the tree according to their understanding of which type of organism it is more closely related to.

    thursday-1.jpg April 11th Evolutionary History Chapter 4

     

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students are introduced to the fossilized bones of the Tometti fossil. This Warm-Up provides the context needed to prepare students for the Science Seminar.

    2: Introducing the Tometti Fossil Mystery (15 min.)

    Students are introduced to the mystery of the Tometti fossil, which will be the focus of the Writing Assignment

    3: Writing on Fossil Mystery

    Students write a scientific argument, building on their oral argumentation experience. Student writing represents an opportunity for students to demonstrate understanding through a three-dimensional performance. Student writing can be scored by referencing the provided rubrics in the Evolutionary History Rubrics for Assessing Students’ Final Written Arguments (in Digital Resources).

    friday-1.jpg April 12th Evolutionary History End of Unit Assessment Students complete an end-of-unit assessment on Edulastic.  The end-of-unit assessment indicates where students fall along the levels of the Progress Build after instruction by measuring their mastery of the specific ideas, both unit-specific science concepts and crosscutting concepts, that comprise each level of the Progress Build. The end-of-unit assessment also measures students’ understanding of important supporting content not explicitly included in the Progress Build. When analyzed with the pre-unit assessment and Critical Juncture, the end-of-unit assessment results indicate students’ progress over the course of the unit.
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  • monday-1.jpg March 25th Gizmo Evolution Mutation and Selection day 1 of 2

    Learning Objectives
    Students will …
    1. Understand what contributes to an organism’s fitness.
    2. Explain how mutation and sexual reproduction produce variation in a population.
    3. Determine that, in general, fit individuals have a better chance of surviving and reproducing than less fit individuals (survival of the fittest).
    4. Predict how a population will evolve when its environment changes.
    5. Describe how mutation and natural selection allow a population to become adapted to its
    environment.


    Vocabulary
    adaptation, allele, chromosome, evolution, fitness, gene, genotype, mutation, natural selection,
    phenotype, trait


    Lesson Overview
    All species have evolved from ancient common ancestors. In the process, life has become greatly diversified. According to the theory of evolution by natural selection, life diversified as different species developed specialized adaptations for particular environments. The Evolution: Mutation and Selection Gizmo simulates how this process takes place. Using the Gizmo, students can change an environment by altering its background color. Students then observe how insects in that environment evolve in response to the change.

    The Student Exploration sheet contains three activities:
    Activity A – Students identify the processes that cause a population to have variation.

    Activity B – Students determine how fitness affects an organism’s chances of survival.

     Activity C – Students observe how evolution can occur through natural selection

    Tuesday-1.jpg March 26th Gizmo Evolution Mutation and Selection day 2 of 2

    Learning Objectives
    Students will …
    1. Understand what contributes to an organism’s fitness.
    2. Explain how mutation and sexual reproduction produce variation in a population.
    3. Determine that, in general, fit individuals have a better chance of surviving and reproducing than less fit individuals (survival of the fittest).
    4. Predict how a population will evolve when its environment changes.
    5. Describe how mutation and natural selection allow a population to become adapted to its
    environment.


    Vocabulary
    adaptation, allele, chromosome, evolution, fitness, gene, genotype, mutation, natural selection,
    phenotype, trait


    Lesson Overview
    All species have evolved from ancient common ancestors. In the process, life has become greatly diversified. According to the theory of evolution by natural selection, life diversified as different species developed specialized adaptations for particular environments. The Evolution: Mutation and Selection Gizmo simulates how this process takes place. Using the Gizmo, students can change an environment by altering its background color. Students then observe how insects in that environment evolve in response to the change.

    The Student Exploration sheet contains three activities:
    Activity A – Students identify the processes that cause a population to have variation.

    Activity B – Students determine how fitness affects an organism’s chances of survival.

     Activity C – Students observe how evolution can occur through natural selection

     

    Wednesday-1.jpg March 27th Bill Nye Evolution

    Students will watch a video on Bill Nye Evolution

    (6th-8th hour Powderpuff Games RTI Reward) 

    You, a plant, an insect, an elephant – all living things are made of the same stuff. All living things look different because they’ve gone through lots of small changes over millions and millions of years. This process is called evolution.

    All living things have genes, which are like little sets of blueprints. Genes have information about the color of your eyes, the shape of your nose, and whether you hair is straight or curly. When living things make other living things, they pass copies of these blueprints to the offspring. The copies are mixtures. They’re never exact, never quite perfect. So, the cool thing is that no two sets of blueprints are exactly alike. So each living thing is different from other living things. Scientists know about evolution from fossils. Fossils show how living things used to look millions of years ago. Scientists take information from fossils to see how living things have changed over thousands, hundreds of thousands, and millions of years.

     THE BIG IDEAS

    • All living things are different from each other.
    • By passing along changes, living things can give their offspring advantages in surviving and reproducing.
    • Fossils show that living things have been changing for billions of years.
    thursday-1.jpg March 28th Crash Course Biology 

    Crash Course is a YouTube series that gives a student friendly and understandable break down of a wide variety of science topics. This video worksheet accompanies Biology: #14 Natural Selection video and #20 Evolution.

    #14 Natural Selection

    This 16 question video worksheet is perfect for introducing the basics of natural selection, adaptation, Darwin's observations, and the different ways natural selection occurs 

    #20 Evolution

    This 11 question video worksheet is perfect for introducing the basics of the theory of evolution, evidence for evolution, fossils, homologous structures, DNA evidence for evolution, micro and macro evolution to introductory biology students. I

    friday-1.jpg March 29th No School White Minimalist Modern Floral Flower Hello Spring Instagram Post.jpg
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  • monday-1.jpg March 18th  Flocabulary Evolution
    1. Students will work on Flocabulary packet on Evolution to complete and turn in
    2. If completed, students will work on Blooket to practice vocabulary words for their upcoming vocabulary quiz. 
    Tuesday-1.jpg March 19th Evolutionary History 2.5
    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students put a list of events into chronological order in order to show their thinking about how species become different through evolution.

    2: Modeling Changes Over Evolutionary Time (15 min.)

    Students use the Modeling Tool to show their current understanding of how time and structural changes are linked. This activity provides an On-the-Fly Assessment of students' understanding of how structures change over time, as well as the crosscutting concept of Stability and Change.

    3: Word Relationships (20 min.)

    Students use the Word Relationships routine to answer the Chapter 2 Question: How did wolves, whales, and the Mystery Fossil become so different from their common ancestor population?

    4: Considering Whale and Wolf Claims (5 min.)

    Students revisit claims about where in the museum to place the Mystery Fossil.

     

    Wednesday-1.jpg March 20th Review for Critical Juncture Students will complete packet to practice for critical juncture for Thursday.
    thursday-1.jpg March 21th Evolutionary History Critical Juncture

    1. Students complete a Critical Juncture Assessment. These assessment results indicate students’ progress from the beginning of the unit and are used to group students for differentiated instruction in the next lesson. As with the pre-unit assessment, the CJ includes content beyond what a student is expected to have mastered. Therefore, the CJ is not intended to be used for summative purposes.

    2. Vocabulary Quiz

    friday-1.jpg March 22nd Evolutionary History 2.7

     

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    In order to reinforce key ideas that the class will focus on with the lesson, students read about one or two reptile species and respond to questions.

    2: Ostrilope Changes Over Time (20 min.)

    Students complete activities in the Natural Selection Sim to reinforce ideas about shared structures, common ancestry, and change over many generations in different environments.

    3: Understanding Evolution from Fossils (15 min.)

    Students examine fossils in the Evolutionary History Sim to investigate and explain similarities and differences in shared structures.

    4: Reviewing Ideas as a Class (5 min.)

    Students summarize main ideas from the lesson's activities in order to reflect on and share what they have learned.

    5: Family Homework Experience (Optional)

    Explaining how species that share a common ancestor can have very different body structures to a member of their household supports student learning through shared experiences with family.

    6: Self-Assessment (Optional)

    Students check their understanding of important content in the unit and are given a chance to reflect on additional questions they have about the Mystery Fossil and evolution.

    Comments (-1)
  • monday-1.jpg March 11th  No School- In-service

     

    Tuesday-1.jpg March 12th Evolutionary History 2.1
    1: Warm-Up (10 min.)

    Students examine a diagram showing a front limb of a cat and a human (from Lesson 1.3). Students identify differences in these limbs in order to start thinking about structural differences, as they simultaneously gain more practice in making careful observations.

    2: Observing Organisms to Consider Differences (25 min.)

    Students analyze differences in the front limbs of three different organisms in order to begin thinking about how the environment could be related to differences in body structures.

    3: Discussing Differences (10 min.)

    Students make connections between the differences they found in the three species' body structures and what they know about natural selection and how organisms adapt to their environment.

    4: Homework

    Students practice making careful observations of two species in the Sim and relate the species' different environments to their different body structures.

     

    Wednesday-1.jpg March 13th Evolutionary History 2.2/Natural and Artificial Selection Gizmo
    1: Warm-Up (10 min.)

    Students practice thinking about the bone structures of a western gorilla and a European mole, as they consider what about the environments where these species live could help explain what their bone structures are like.

    2: Active Reading: Where Do Species Come From? (25 min.)

    Students practice the Active Reading approach while learning about speciation. The teacher uses this opportunity for an On-the-Fly Assessment of students' ability to summarize while reading.

    3: Discussing Annotations (10 min.)

    Students address potential confusions about speciation, evolution, and natural selection through a discussion of the reading. Students' annotations provide an opportunity for an On-the-Fly Assessment of annotation skills, reading comprehension, and content understanding.

    4. Complete Activity C on Natural Selection and Artificial Selection Gizmo

     

    thursday-1.jpg March 14th Evolutionary History 2.3
    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students think about a population of frogs and consider what would happen to two descendant species.

    2: Second Read: Where Do Species Come From? (20 min.)

    Students reread the article they chose in the last lesson from the Where Do Species Come From? article set, exploring how and why the separated population changed, to prepare for modeling that change in the Sim activity that follows. This activity provides an On-the-Fly Assessment of students' understanding of how body structures change, as well as an opportunity to assess their understanding of the crosscutting concept of Stability and Change.

    3: How One Population Becomes Two Species (20 min.)

    Students gain experience exploring how a common ancestor population will evolve differently depending on its environment.

    4: Homework

    Students use the Modeling Tool to apply their knowledge of how one species can give rise to two species when the common ancestor population is split into two different environments.

    friday-1.jpg March 15th Evolutionary History 2.4 

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students' prior knowledge is activated as they place images on a timeline in order to grasp the magnitude of time that has passed during Earth's evolutionary history.

    2: Warm-Up Debrief (10 min.)

    The Warm-Up debrief prompts further thinking, using a calendar metaphor, about how much time it took for life-human life in particular-to evolve.

    3: Structure Change Card Sort (15 min.)

    A comparison of the time required for small and large structural changes to evolve helps students to understand how species that are descended from a common ancestor may evolve to have such significant differences.

    4: Evolutionary Time in the Sim (15 min.)

    The Evolutionary History Sim encourages students to examine how structural changes build up over time. They do this by following the evolutionary history of one living species backward in time to compare the species to fossil relatives.

    5: Homework

    Students reflect on what they learned about evolutionary time.

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  • monday-1.jpg March 4th  Evolutionary History 1.2
    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students make initial observations about the upper body of the Mystery Fossil.

    (Teacher Only) Video: Placing the Mystery Fossil in the Museum (5 min.)

    Students are introduced to the topic of the unit and to the Natural History Museum by watching a video about the problem that they will work to solve.

    2: Discussing the Student Paleontologist Role (5 min.)

    Students are introduced to their role as student paleontologists working to place a new fossil in the museum. They also begin to learn what a paleontologist does and find out more about the Mystery Fossil.

    3: Finding Similarities Between Species (20 min.)

    Students gain experience noticing similarities between species by examining cards showing the body structures of many different species, living and extinct, and considering how to group the species.

    4: How Paleontologists Make Observations (10 min.)

    Students compare two organisms in order to learn about the importance of making careful observations when examining body structures.

    5: Homework

    Students read the article “The Cat That Wasn’t a Cat at All” in order to learn more about the importance of careful observations and how to make them.

    Tuesday-1.jpg March 5th Evolutionary History 1.3

     

    1: Warm-Up (10 min.)

    Students consider shared structures in seemingly dissimilar species.

    2: Active Reading: “How You Are Like a Blue Whale” (20 min.)

    Students practice the Active Reading approach while learning about how the similarities between whale and human body structures provide evidence that whales and humans share a common ancestor. The teacher uses this opportunity for an On-the-Fly Assessment of students' ability to engage with scientific texts and to summarize main ideas from the text.

    3: Discussing Annotations (10 min.)

    Students discuss their annotations in order to share their thinking, clarify confusion, and think more deeply about shared structures and how these are evidence of common ancestry. Students' annotations provide an opportunity for an On-the-Fly Assessment of their annotation skills, reading comprehension, and content understanding.

    4: Introducing the Evolutionary History Simulation (5 min.)

    Students learn how to access the Evolutionary History Simulation, which they will use for homework.

    5: Homework

    Students explore the Evolutionary History Simulation.

    Wednesday-1.jpg March 6th Evolutionary History 1.4

     

    1: Warm-Up (7 min.)

    Students practice identifying shared body structures in two fictional species.

    2: Second Read: “How You Are Like a Blue Whale” (18 min.)

    Students reread a section of the text that includes part of an evolutionary tree diagram showing the relationship between whales, humans, and a common ancestor population in order to refamiliarize themselves with these relationships and with this important visual representation.

    3: Tracing Structures in an Evolutionary Tree (20 min.)

    Students use the Evolutionary History Sim to observe how scientists use shared structures to map out the relationships between species. This offers an opportunity for an On-the-Fly Assessment to gauge students' understanding of the idea that structural similarities are inherited from a common ancestor.

    4: Homework

    Students return to the two species they compared in the Warm-Up and apply what they learned during the lesson to infer what the species' common ancestor might have looked like.

    thursday-1.jpg March 7th Evolutionary History 1.5  
    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students learn that the Mystery Fossil gave live birth and consider what this might mean about other species to which it might be related.

    2: What Can We Learn from the Baby Mystery Fossil? (10 min.)

    Having learned that the Mystery Fossil is not an egg-laying creature, students discover the value of this uniquely shared characteristic in inferring relatedness, as they reconsider the claim that the Mystery Fossil is most closely related to crocodiles.

    3: Comparing the Mystery Fossil to Whales and Wolves (15 min.)

    Students have been discussing the fact that when species share similar structures, they may also share a common ancestor; now they apply this idea to structures found in the Mystery Fossil, the whale skeleton, and the wolf skeleton: All of these have structures in common, so they may all share a common ancestor.

    4: Predicting Body Structures of a Common Ancestor (15 min.)

    Students demonstrate understanding of how body structures are inherited from common ancestors by creating a visual model. This activity provides an On-the-Fly Assessment of students' understanding of shared body structures between ancestor and descendant species.

    5: Self-Assessment (Optional)

    Students check their understanding of important content in the unit and have a chance to reflect on additional questions they may have about the Mystery Fossil and evolution.

    friday-1.jpg March 8th Evolutionary History 2.1
    1: Warm-Up (10 min.)

    Students examine a diagram showing a front limb of a cat and a human (from Lesson 1.3). Students identify differences in these limbs in order to start thinking about structural differences, as they simultaneously gain more practice in making careful observations.

    2: Observing Organisms to Consider Differences (25 min.)

    Students analyze differences in the front limbs of three different organisms in order to begin thinking about how the environment could be related to differences in body structures.

    3: Discussing Differences (10 min.)

    Students make connections between the differences they found in the three species' body structures and what they know about natural selection and how organisms adapt to their environment.

    4: Homework

    Students practice making careful observations of two species in the Sim and relate the species' different environments to their different body structures.

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  • monday-1.jpg February 26th Natural Selection Lesson 4.1
    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students annotate a passage from "The Stickleback Fish in Its Environment" article they read for homework. They begin thinking about factors in the stickleback environment that could determine whether its armor is an adaptive trait.

    2: Introducing Sticklebacks (10 min.)

    The teacher uses a slideshow to introduce students to the stickleback mystery and provides background information about how the stickleback population has changed over time.

    3: Examining Evidence About Sticklebacks (20 min.)

    Students carefully read and analyze the evidence they will use in the Science Seminar.

    4: Discussing Evidence and Claims (20 min.)

    In preparation for the Science Seminar, students sort, coordinate, and discuss pieces of evidence in order to determine how the evidence relates to the claims.

    Tuesday-1.jpg February 27th Natural Selection Lesson 4.2/4.3
    1: Warm-Up (10 min.)

    Students practice combining evidence to support a claim.

    2: Using the Reasoning Tool (10 min.)

    Students use the Reasoning Tool to make their reasoning about the Science Seminar evidence clear.

    3: Preparing to Write (10 min.)

    Students prepare to use their completed Reasoning Tools to write a scientific argument.

    4: Writing a Scientific Argument (15 min.)

    Students apply their knowledge of natural selection as they write a convincing scientific argument that explains why the stickleback population has less armor and has become faster compared to the sticklebacks 13 generations ago. Student writing represents an opportunity for students to demonstrate understanding through a three-dimensional performance. Student writing can be scored by referencing the provided rubric in the Natural Selection Rubrics for Final Written Argument (in Digital Resources).

    5: Homework

    Students engage in an important part of the writing process by reviewing and revising their written arguments.

    6: Self-Assessment (Optional)

    Students check their understanding of important content in the unit, and are given a chance to reflect on additional questions they have about natural selection in the newt population.

    Wednesday-1.jpg February 28th Louisiana Companion Lesson

     This lesson builds on and reinforces students’ understanding that an organism’s genes lead to their traits; students consider how environmental factors also contribute to an organism’s traits. In this lesson, students read the article “Growing Giant Pumpkins.” After the teacher models Active Reading, students read and annotate the article and then reflect on their annotations in partner and whole-class discussions. Students then revisit the article to learn more about factors that affect an organism’s growth. The purpose of this lesson is for students to learn that both genetics and environmental factors influence
    an organism’s growth.  Students will also complete a blooket to review for assessment. 

    thursday-1.jpg February 29th Natural Selection End of Unit Assessment  Students complete an End-of-Unit Assessment on Pear Assessment. The End-of-Unit Assessment indicates where students fall along the levels of the Progress Build after instruction by measuring their mastery of the specific ideas, both unit-specific science concepts and crosscutting concepts, that comprise each level of the Progress Build. The End-of-Unit Assessment also measures students’ understanding of important supporting content not explicitly included in the Progress Build. When analyzed with the Pre-Unit Assessment and Critical Juncture, the End-of-Unit Assessment results indicate students’ progress over the course of the unit.
    friday-1.jpg March 1st Pre-Unit Assessment Evolutionary History/Vocabulary Students complete a pre-unit assessment. The pre-unit assessment is diagnostic and designed to reveal students’ understanding of the unit’s core content—including unit-specific science concepts and crosscutting concepts—prior to instruction by indicating, for formative purposes, where students initially fall along the levels of the Progress Build (PB). The pre-unit assessment also measures students’ understanding of important supporting content not explicitly included in the PB. As such, the pre-unit assessment offers a baseline from which to measure growth of understanding over the course of the unit. Students will also complete vocabulary worksheets for evolutionary history to turn in for bonus points. 
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  • monday-1.jpg February 19th Natural Selection Lesson 3.1
    1: Warm-Up (7 min.)

    Students receive new population data from the past that motivates the Investigation Question: How do new traits appear in populations?

    2: Active Reading: Mutations (25 min.)

    Students continue to develop their Active Reading skills, focusing on making connections. In this article set, students read about different examples of populations that have had mutations. This activity provides an On-the-Fly Assessment of students' abilities to engage with scientific texts and to make deeper connections.

    3: Discussing Annotations (10 min.)

    Students have time to discuss their thinking about the reading they did in order to share important insights and/or correct alternate conceptions. Students have a chance to share what they read with another student who read a different article from the choice set. Students' annotations provide an opportunity for an On-the-Fly Assessment of students' annotation skills, reading comprehension, and content understanding.

    (Teacher Only) Introducing the Homework (3 min.)

    The teacher introduces students to mutations in the Sim for homework.

    4: Homework

    Students explore mutations in the Natural Selection Simulation.

    Tuesday-1.jpg February 20th Natural Selection Lesson 3.2
    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students check their understanding about mutations and mutant traits.

    2: Rereading Mutations (20 min.)

    Students reread the choice article they read in the last lesson with a new purpose: looking for information about what causes mutant traits to become more common over time. The teacher uses this as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students' understanding of the crosscutting concept of Cause and Effect.

    3: Investigating Mutant Fur Traits in the Sim (15 min.)

    Students discover that new traits introduced by mutations only become more common if they are adaptive in a particular environment.

    4: Reflection (5 min.)

    Students have an opportunity to consider what they have learned about mutations.

    5: Homework

    Students correct a common alternate conception about mutations and natural selection in the last of the Sherman’s Stories for the unit. Students also read about artificial selection and genetic engineering.

    Wednesday-1.jpg February 21th Natural Selection Lesson 3.3
    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students review the last of Sherman's Stories for more evidence that shows organisms don't acquire adaptive traits just because they want them.

    2: Write and Share: Discussing Mutations (20 min.)

    Students use the Write and Share routine to compare how the distribution of traits changes in populations when three different mutations are introduced. This allows them to demonstrate what they have learned about why some mutated traits become common and others do not. The teacher uses this activity as an On-the-Fly assessment of students' understanding of how mutations affect the distribution of traits in a population.

    3: Preparing a Final Model (20 min.)

    Students apply what they have learned in the unit to model their full understanding of how the distribution of poison traits changed in the newt population over time.

    4: Homework

    Students will read the article “The Stickleback Fish in Its Environment” and annotate it with their questions and connections.

    5: Self-Assessment (Optional)

    Students check their understanding of important content in the unit, and are given a chance to reflect on additional questions they have about natural selection in the newt population.

    thursday-1.jpg February 22nd

    Louisiana Companion Lesson

    Reading about plant and animal reproduction

    This lesson builds on and reinforces students’ understanding that individuals with adaptive traits are more likely to have offspring. Students learn about the particular traits, including behaviors, that help plants and animals reproduce. They read two short articles. “Why the Corpse Flower Smells So Bad” describes one plant’s adaptations for reproduction, including a reliance on specific animals for pollination. “Apartments Built by Birds” describes sociable weavers’ behaviors—including nest building, group living, and courtship displays—that help them survive and reproduce. After the teacher models Active Reading, students read and annotate the articles and then reflect on their annotations in partner and whole-class discussions. Students then revisit the articles to learn more about traits and behaviors that help organisms reproduce. The purpose of this lesson is for students to learn about traits that help plants and animals reproduce successfully and about how group behaviors can help animals survive.  
    friday-1.jpg February 23rd Natural Selection Lesson 4.1
    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students annotate a passage from "The Stickleback Fish in Its Environment" article they read for homework. They begin thinking about factors in the stickleback environment that could determine whether its armor is an adaptive trait.

    2: Introducing Sticklebacks (10 min.)

    The teacher uses a slideshow to introduce students to the stickleback mystery and provides background information about how the stickleback population has changed over time.

    3: Examining Evidence About Sticklebacks (20 min.)

    Students carefully read and analyze the evidence they will use in the Science Seminar.

    4: Discussing Evidence and Claims (20 min.)

    In preparation for the Science Seminar, students sort, coordinate, and discuss pieces of evidence in order to determine how the evidence relates to the claims.

    Comments (-1)
  • monday-1.jpg February 12th

    No School

    Mardi Gras Break

     
    Tuesday-1.jpg February 13th

    No School

    Mardi Gras Break

     
    Wednesday-1.jpg February 14th

    No School 

    Mardi Gras Break

     
    thursday-1.jpg February 15th

    Natural Selection Gizmo

     

    In the Natural Selection Gizmo, you play the role of a bird hunting for moths resting on tree trunks. The moths are found in light (speckled) and dark varieties, and tree trunks can be either light or dark in color. Students can track the populations of light and dark moths over a five-year period.

     

    The Student Exploration sheet contains two activities:

    • Activity A – Students hunt moths on trees with light bark.
    • Activity B – Students hunt moths on trees with dark bark.
    friday-1.jpg February 16th

    Natural Selection Gizmo/

    Vocabulary Blooket Practice

    In the Natural Selection Gizmo, you play the role of a bird hunting for moths resting on tree trunks. The moths are found in light (speckled) and dark varieties, and tree trunks can be either light or dark in color. Students can track the populations of light and dark moths over a five-year period.

     

    The Student Exploration sheet contains two activities:

    • Activity A – Students hunt moths on trees with light bark.
    • Activity B – Students hunt moths on trees with dark bark.

    Students will also be assigned their vocabulary words on Blooket in order to practice for their Natural Selection Vocabulary Test. 

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  • monday-1.jpg February 5th Natural Selection Lesson 2.1
    1: Warm-Up (10 min.)

    Students read a new Sherman's Story that introduces them to the idea of how parents might influence whether adaptive traits are passed to their offspring.

    2: Reproduction in the Sim (15 min.)

    Students gather evidence in the Sim to refute the alternate conception that reproduction always produces offspring with adaptive traits.

    3: Traits Over Generations (20 min.)

    Students participate in an activity that demonstrates how offspring have traits that are like their parents' traits.

    4: Reading "Glowing Jellies" (20 min.)

    Students engage in a quick version of Active Reading, reading a short article about the protein molecule that causes crystal jellies to glow.

    5: Reflection (10 min.)

    Students answer the Investigation Question: How do individuals in a population get their traits?

    Tuesday-1.jpg February 6th Natural Selection Lesson 2.2

     

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students examine spider parents and offspring and explain how the offspring got their traits.

    (Teacher Only) Observing Genes, Protein Molecules and Traits (15 min.)

    Students observe a model of reproduction in the Traits and Reproduction Sim in order to get a more in depth view of how genes are instructions for making protein molecules and how protein molecules lead to traits.

    2: Observing Reproduction in the Sim (20 min.)

    Students use the Sim to investigate how reproduction and adaptive traits are related.

    3: Responding to Sherman (20 min.)

    Students create a model and write a response to Sherman's alternate conceptions about reproduction.

    (Teacher Only) Introducing Homework (5 min.)

    The teacher introduces the homework.

    4: Homework

    Students make connections between natural selection and other topics they have studied in science.

    Wednesday-1.jpg February 7th Natural Selection Lesson 2.3

     

    1: Warm-Up (10 min.)

    Students activate their prior knowledge about how natural selection changes populations over time, considering whether organisms with adaptive traits have longer lifespans.

    2: Active Reading: “The Deadly Dare” (25 min.)

    Students learn about the process of natural selection as they read about how poison works as an adaptive trait in rough-skinned newts and other organisms. This activity provides an opportunity for an On-the-Fly Assessment of students' ability to engage with scientific texts and to make deeper connections.

    3: Discussing Annotations (10 min.)

    Students discuss their thinking about the reading in order to share important insights and surface alternate conceptions. Students' annotations provide an opportunity for an On-the-Fly Assessment of students' annotation skills, reading comprehension, and content understanding.

    4: Homework

    Students have an opportunity to read about about the diverse history of science and how the theory of natural selection gained traction and prominence.

    thursday-1.jpg February 8th Natural Selection Lesson 2.4
    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students revisit a visual representation from "The Deadly Dare" to consider alternate ways of explaining natural selection.

    2: Rereading “The Deadly Dare” (20 min.)

    Students read with a new purpose: to look for information about how reproduction is a part of natural selection. The teacher uses this activity as an On-the-Fly assessment of students' understanding of the role of reproduction in changes to trait distributions.

    3: Reasoning About the Rough-Skinned Newts (18 min.)

    Students prepare to write a scientific argument by using the Reasoning Tool to make explicit connections between pieces of evidence and one of the claims.

    (Teacher Only) Introducing the Homework (2 min.)

    The teacher reminds students how to write a scientific argument, which they will be doing for homework.

    4: Homework

    Students use the work they have done in the Reasoning Tool to craft a scientific argument for Alex Young that explains the changes in the newt population.

    friday-1.jpg February 9th Natural Selection Critical Juncture

    Students complete a Critical Juncture Assessment. The CJ is designed to reveal students’ current levels of understanding of the unit’s core content, and the results are used to place each student at a particular level on the Progress Build (PB). These assessment results indicate students’ progress from the beginning of the unit and are used to group students for differentiated instruction in the next lesson. As with the Pre-Unit Assessment, the CJ includes content beyond what a student is expected to have mastered. Therefore, the CJ is not intended to be used for summative purposes.

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  • monday-1.jpg January 29th Natural Selection Lesson 1.3
    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students reread an excerpt from the article "The Rough-Skinned Newt" in order to review the idea that individuals in a population can have different traits.

    2: Exploring Variation and Distribution in the Sim (20 min.)

    Students use the Simulation to reinforce their understanding of trait variation and distribution in populations.

    (Teacher Only) Video: Histograms (5 min.)

    An animated video helps students understand how histograms simply and accurately convey data about traits in populations.

    3: Defining Variation, Distribution, and Generation (5 min.)

    Students are introduced to text and visual definitions of the words variationdistribution, and generation.

    4: Building Histograms (10 min.)

    Students apply their understanding of variation and distribution to building histograms with manipulatives. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students' understanding of variation and distribution through the practice of representing data.

    5: Homework

    Students gain experience explaining how a histogram shows the traits in a population.

    Tuesday-1.jpg January 30th Natural Selection Lesson 1.3 Flextention

     This hands-on activity builds on and reinforces students’ understanding of trait variation
    within a population. Students examine some sunflower seeds and observe their traits. They
    identify features of the sunflower seeds where there is variation in traits and group the
    seeds according to those traits. They then focus on differences in the number of stripes
    on the sunflower seed shells and construct histograms to represent the distribution of
    stripe numbers. The purpose of this lesson is for students to gain additional experience
    with trait variation and to practice constructing histograms.

    Wednesday-1.jpg January 31st Natural Selection Lesson 1.4
    1: Warm-Up (7 min.)

    Students see that the variation and distribution of traits in a population can change over time.

    2: Observing Fur Traits and Temperature in the Sim (10 min.)

    By investigating an ostrilope population in a cold environment, students learn that adaptive traits help an individual survive in a particular environment, while non-adaptive traits make it harder to survive. The teacher uses this activity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students' facility with the practice of analyzing and interpreting data.

    3: Modeling Changes to the Distribution of Traits (18 min.)

    Students create a model to show their ideas about why the distribution of a trait can change.

    4: Testing Predictions in the Sim (10 min.)

    Through investigating a population with low variation in a cold environment, students learn that changes in distribution of traits are determined by the traits present in the population.

    5: Homework

    Students read about a few organisms that live in the same environment as rough-skinned newts in order to apply their understanding of variation, traits, and changes in trait distribution.

    thursday-1.jpg February 1st Natural Selection Lesson 1.5

     

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students review how to describe the distribution of traits in a population by looking at new evidence about the poisonous newt population.

    2: Investigating Adaptive Traits in the Sim (25 min.)

    Students investigate if yellow is always an adaptive trait by observing yellow ostrilopes in yellow environments with and without carnithons.

    3: Modeling Trait Distribution in Thornpalms (15 min.)

    Students apply their understanding of why the distribution of traits in a population changes by making a prediction about the water-storage trait in thornpalms. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students' understanding of how the distribution of traits in a population changes when environmental factors make it more or less likely for organisms with certain traits to survive.

    4: Homework

    Students test their predictions from their Modeling Tools in the Simulation.

    friday-1.jpg February 2nd Natural Selection Lesson 1.6

     

    1: Warm-Up (10 min.)

    Students explore a common alternate conception and use their understanding of adaptive traits to explain why it is wrong.

    2: Write and Share: Changes in Populations (20 min.)

    Students participate in the Write and Share routine to practice using essential vocabulary and to apply their understanding about what makes the distribution of traits in a population change.

    3: Explaining Changes in the Newt Population (15 min.)

    Students examine histograms of the newt population and use what they have learned to explain why the newts in the population became more poisonous over time. The teacher uses this activity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students' understanding of the crosscutting concept of Cause and Effect.

    4: Self-Assessment (Optional)

    Students check their understanding of key content in the unit, and are given a chance to reflect on additional questions they have about natural selection in the newt population.

    Comments (-1)
  • monday-1.jpg January 22nd Rock Transformation End of Unit Assessment

    The End-of-Unit Assessment indicates where students fall along the levels of the Progress Build after instruction by measuring their mastery of the specific ideas, both unit-specific science concepts and crosscutting concepts, that comprise each level of the Progress Build. The End-of-Unit Assessment also measures students’ understanding of important supporting content not explicitly included in the Progress Build. When analyzed with the Pre-Unit Assessment and Critical Juncture, the End-of-Unit Assessment results indicate students’ progress over the course of the unit.

    Tuesday-1.jpg January 23rd Midpoint Assessment

    Students complete mid-point assessment covering content from Thermal Energy, Plate Motion, and Rock Transformation Unit. 

    Wednesday-1.jpg January 24th No School/Weather

     

    thursday-1.jpg January 25th Natural Selection Lesson 1.1/Vocabulary

     The pre-unit assessment is diagnostic and designed to reveal students’ understanding of the unit’s core content—including unit-specific science concepts and crosscutting concepts—prior to instruction by indicating, for formative purposes, where students initially fall along the levels of the Progress Build. The pre-unit assessment also measures students’ understanding of important supporting content not explicitly included in the Progress Build. As such, the pre-unit assessment offers a baseline from which to measure growth of understanding over the course of the unit. Students will also complete definition of Vocabulary for unit that students will complete a vocabulary assessment later on within the unit. 

    friday-1.jpg January 26th Natural Selection Lesson 1.2
    1: Warm-Up (10 min.)

    Students use their observational skills to describe variation in a population.

    (Teacher Only) Video: The Mystery of the Poisonous Newts (10 min.)

    A video introduces students to their role as biologists and to the problem they will solve in this unit.

    2: Observing Traits (20 min.)

    By observing card sets of population images, students engage with the concept of variation.

    3: Reflection (5 min.)

    A reflection activity provides an assessment of students' initial understanding of variation.

    4: Homework

    Students are provided with more information about the rough-skinned newts, their traits, and the variation in their population through a short article. Students also have an opportunity to read about a scientist that studies natural selection.

    Comments (-1)
  • monday-1.jpg January 15th No School Martin Luther King Day

     

    Tuesday-1.jpg January 16th School Closure

     

    Wednesday-1.jpg January 17th School Closure

     

    thursday-1.jpg January 18th Rock Cycle Webquest

    Students read articles to review on Rock Cycle. 

    friday-1.jpg January 19th Review for End of Unit Assessment

    Review of Rock Transformation End of Unit. 

    Comments (-1)
  • January 8th

    Rock Transformation Lesson 3.1

    1: Warm-Up (10 min.)

    Students learn new information about the Rocky Mountains and consider what this means. This information provides motivation to learn how rock formations can move from underground to the surface.

    2: “The Oldest Rock Formations on Earth” (25 min.)

    Students read to learn about how uplift affects rock formations using the example of one of the oldest rock formations on Earth. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ progress in engaging with scientific texts and asking deeper questions.

    3: Discussing Annotations (10 min.)

    Students discuss their thinking about the reading in order to share important insights and surface alternate conceptions. Students’ annotations provide an opportunity for an On-the-Fly Assessment of annotation skills, reading comprehension, and content understanding.

    4: Homework

    Students use the Plate Motion Simulation to explore plate motion and generate ideas about how plate motion can cause rock formations to move.

    January 9th

    Rock Transformation Lesson 3.2

    1: Warm-Up (10 min.)

    Students observe how plate motion can move rock formations.

    2: Second Read of Rock Formations Article (20 min.)

    Students revisit the “The Oldest Rock Formations on Earth” article to gather evidence about how rock formations can move between Earth’s surface and Earth’s interior.

    3: Moving Rock Formations (15 min.)

    Students complete Sim missions in order to understand the role of plate motion in rock transformation processes.

    4: Homework

    Students complete additional Sim missions in order to apply their knowledge.

    January 10th

    Rock Transformation Lesson 3.3

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students prepare to participate in the classroom model.

    2: Moving Through Rock Transformations (20 min.)

    Students engage in a classroom model of how rock material is transported and transformed on Earth.

    3: Mapping Rock Transformation Paths (15 min.)

    Students sketch out and share the path their rock material took in the model in order to make sense of how uplift and subduction relate to rock transformations.

    4: Reflecting on Rock Transformations (5 min.)

    Students reflect on what they learned by explaining how uplift and subduction can affect rock transformation processes.

    January 11th

    Rock Transformation Lesson 3.4

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students use the Sorting Tool to review rock movement and exposure to energy during plate motion.

    2: Write and Share: Moving Rock Formations (15 min.)

    Students use the Write and Share Routine to apply their understanding of how uplift and subduction move rock formations. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ understanding of the crosscutting concept of Matter and Energy.

    3: Modeling Rock Transformations (25 min.)

    Students demonstrate their understanding of how rocks transform by creating a model that communicates the process by which they think rock from one region transformed into rock in another. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ understanding of how plate motion can lead to rock transformations.

    4: Homework

    Students write their final report explaining how the Rocky Mountains and Great Plains formed.

    5: Self-Assessment (Optional)

    Students check their understanding of important content in the unit and are given a chance to reflect on additional questions they have about rock transformations.

    January 12th

    Rock Transformation Lesson 4.1

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    In preparation for their investigation of rocks on Venus, students consider whether or not rock transformations occur on other planets.

    2: Rock Transformations on Venus (5 min.)

    Students are introduced to a new problem regarding rock transformations on Venus.

    3: Evaluating Rock Observations (20 min.)

    Students evaluate Venus Evidence Cards in order to determine which are most useful.

    4: Comparing Rock on Earth and Venus (15 min.)

    Students are introduced to two claims, which they will discuss in the Science Seminar. They are given images of rocks on Earth to compare to those found on Venus.

    Comments (-1)
  • December 11th

    Rock Transformation 2.3

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students consider the order of the steps in forming magma and sediment.

    2: Making Sediment with Hard Candy (15 min.)

    Students see that both igneous and sedimentary rocks can change into sediment.

    Playing Making Candy Magma (5 min.)

    Students watch a video to learn how magma can be made from sedimentary and igneous rocks.

    3: Second Read of “Devils Tower” (20 min.)

    Students reread “Devils Tower,” applying their understanding of the role energy in rock transformations. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ understanding of the crosscutting concept of Energy and Matter.

    4. Students finish Gizmo Rock Comparisons

    4: Homework

    Students read an article, learning about Earth’s renewable and non-renewable resources.

    December 12th

    Rock Transformation 2.4

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students use the Sorting Tool to categorize words describing the processes that form sedimentary and igneous rocks.

    2: Write and Share: Energy Transforming Rocks (20 min.)

    Students apply their understanding of how energy transforms rocks by using the Write and Share Routine. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ understanding of the role of energy in transforming rocks. The teacher will also use this opportunity to assess students' ability to construct explanations.

    3: Modeling How Rocks Form, Part 2 (15 min.)

    Students show their understanding of how rocks form by adding the initial rock material and transformation process to their models from Chapter 1. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ understanding of Chapter 2 content as well as the NGSS practice of Developing and Using Models.

    4: Reflecting on the Claims (5 min.)

    The teacher guides students' thinking about the two claims in light of their new understanding.

    December 13th

    Rock Transformation 2.5

    1. Students complete a Critical Juncture Assessment. The Critical Juncture Assessment is designed to reveal students’ current levels of understanding of the unit’s core content, and the results are used to place each student at a particular level of the Progress Build.

    2. Vocabulary Quiz

    December 14th

    Rock Transformation 2.6

    1: Warm-Up (10 min.)

    Students read about different types of rocks that can be found in Hawaii, reviewing key concepts and preparing for the Sim activity.

    2: Making Rock Materials in Hawaii (30 min.)

    Students use the concepts from their articles to consider and plan an investigation into how specific rock materials formed in Hawaii.

    Explaining How Rock Materials Formed (5 min.)

    Students collaborate in understanding how rock formed. They use a series of images of Hawaii to apply the evidence they collected from their separate Sim missions.

    3: Self-Assessment (Optional)

    Students check their understanding of important content in the unit and are given a chance to reflect on additional questions they have about rock transformations.

    December 15th

    Rock Transformation 2.6 Flextention

    This lesson builds on and reinforces students’ understanding of weathering. Students
    read “Bryce Canyon Hoodoos” to learn about a different type of weathering called
    chemical weathering. After the teacher models Active Reading, students read and
    annotate the article and then reflect on their annotations in partner and whole-class
    discussions. Students revisit the article to gather evidence about what happens to the
    rock when it undergoes chemical weathering. They learn that chemical reactions take
    place, which causes the rock to turn into new substances with new properties. The
    purpose of this lesson is for students to figure out what happens when substances go
    through a chemical reaction.

    Comments (-1)
  • December 4th

    Rock Transformation Lesson 1.5

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students review the “Rocks on the Beach” article, which they read for homework. They review descriptions of how different rock types form, solidifying their understanding of the two processes covered so far.

    2: Modeling How Rocks Form (15 min.)

    Students show their current understanding of how sedimentary and igneous rocks form. They use the Modeling Tool to communicate their ideas with other students. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ ideas about how sedimentary and igneous rocks form.

    3: Evaluating Rock Observations (17 min.)

    Students consider evidence about the rock of the two study regions. They apply an understanding of detailed observations to evaluate the given evidence.

    4: Discussing How the Rocks Formed (8 min.)

    Students use the evidence about the rock of the Great Plains and Rocky Mountains. They determine which rock type is found in each region and how those rocks formed.

    5: Homework

    Students practice supporting a scientific argument with evidence in order to explain their current thinking about the claims.

    6: Self-Assessment (Optional)

    Students check their understanding of important content in the unit and are given a chance to reflect on additional questions they have about rock transformations.

    December 5th

    Rock Transformation Louisiana Companion Document

    This lesson builds on and reinforces students’ understanding of how sedimentary rock
    forms by applying this idea to the formation of crude oil—the material used to make
    plastic. In this lesson, students read the article “From Living Things to Plastic: A Journey
    Through Rock.” After the teacher models Active Reading, students read and annotate
    the article and then reflect on their annotations in partner and whole-class discussions. 

    December 6th

    Rock Transformation Lesson 2.1

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students begin to think about where magma and sediment come from in order to activate their prior knowledge and surface their initial thinking.

    2: Exploring How Magma and Sediment Form (20 min.)

    Students use the Sim to understand how different energy sources drive processes that form rocks.

    (Teacher Only) Playing Understanding Weathering (10 min.)

    Students watch a video to help them gain a deeper understanding of how weathering affects rock formations.

    3: Sorting Rock Processes (10 min.)

    Students identify the energy sources that drive rock transformation and indicate where these processes occur.

    4: Homework

    Students watch the Understanding Weathering video again in order to better understand weathering and erosion.

    December 7th

    Rock Transformation Flextention Activity

    This hands-on activity builds on and reinforces students’ understanding of rock
    characteristics, how rocks form, and the work of geologists who study rocks. Students
    are introduced to minerals and the idea that rocks are composed of one or more minerals.
    To identify a mystery mineral, students gather evidence through observations (color and
    luster) and the results of diagnostic tests (hardness, streak, magnetic attraction, and
    density). The purpose of this lesson is to extend students’ understanding of rock formations
    and rock transformations and to expose them to common investigation practices in
    geology.

    December 8th

    Rock Transformation Lesson 2.2

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students observe an image and apply their understanding of erosion.

    2: Active Reading: “Devils Tower” (25 min.)

    Students read to learn about how sediment and magma are formed using the example of a famous rock formation in Wyoming. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ ability to engage with scientific texts and ask deeper questions.

    3: Discussing Annotations (10 min.)

    Students discuss their thinking about the reading in order to share important insights and surface alternate conceptions. Students’ annotations provide an opportunity for an On-the-Fly Assessment of annotation skills, reading comprehension, and content understanding.

    4: Reflecting on Magma and Sediment (5 min.)

    Students reflect on what they have learned so far about what causes magma and sediment to form.

    Comments (-1)
  • November 27th

    Rock Transformation Lesson 1.1

    Students will complete a pre-unit assessment on Rock Transformation. The Pre-Unit Assessment is diagnostic and designed to reveal students’ understanding of the unit’s core content—including unit-specific science concepts and crosscutting concepts—prior to instruction by indicating, for formative purposes, where students initially fall along the levels of the Progress Build. The Pre-Unit Assessment also measures students’ understanding of important supporting content not explicitly included in the Progress Build. As such, it offers a baseline from which to measure growth of understanding over the course of the unit.

    November 28th

    Rock Transformation Lesson 1.2

    1: Warm-Up (10 min.)

    Students use prior knowledge to answer a question about how rocks form.

    Video: Geology 101 (5 min.)

    A short video introduces students to their roles as geologists. They also learn about the mystery they will be investigating throughout this unit.

    2: Thinking Like a Geologist (10 min.)

    Students share initial ideas about the investigation and become familiar with the Great Plains and Rocky Mountains.

    3: Observing Hand Samples of Rock (20 min.)

    Students inspect hand samples of different types of rock and consider what it means to make detailed observations.

    November 29th

    Rock Transformation Lesson 1.3

    1: Warm-Up (10 min.)

    Students practice decoding a cross-section diagram of rock formations to prepare them for the cross-section representation in the Simulation.

    2: Forming Rocks in the Simulation (25 min.)

    Students explore the Simulation and discover different processes that can form different types of rock.

    3: Considering How Rocks Form (10 min.)

    Students reflect on processes that form different rocks in the Sim. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ ideas about how rocks form.

    4: Family Homework Experience (Optional)

    Exploring rocks at home supports student learning through shared experiences with family.

    November 30th

    Rock Transformation Lesson 1.4

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    In preparation for gathering evidence, students consider why the process of forming rocks is difficult to observe.

    2: Modeling How Sediment Forms Rock (15 min.)

    Students use hard candy to model how sedimentary rock forms.

     Playing Cooling Magma (2 min.)

    The teacher projects video footage of magma flowing and then cooling on an island in Hawaii.

    3: Discussing How Magma Forms Rock (8 min.)

    Students engage in a discussion about how magma forms igneous rock.

    4: Rock Types and How They Form (15 min.)

    Students use a set of characteristics to help identify the rock samples they initially studied in Lesson 1.2.

    5: Homework

    Students read an article about different rocks on the beach and how they formed.

    December 1st

    Rock Transformation Lesson 1.5

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students review the “Rocks on the Beach” article, which they read for homework. They review descriptions of how different rock types form, solidifying their understanding of the two processes covered so far.

    2: Modeling How Rocks Form (15 min.)

    Students show their current understanding of how sedimentary and igneous rocks form. They use the Modeling Tool to communicate their ideas with other students. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ ideas about how sedimentary and igneous rocks form.

    3: Evaluating Rock Observations (17 min.)

    Students consider evidence about the rock of the two study regions. They apply an understanding of detailed observations to evaluate the given evidence.

    4: Discussing How the Rocks Formed (8 min.)

    Students use the evidence about the rock of the Great Plains and Rocky Mountains. They determine which rock type is found in each region and how those rocks formed.

    5: Homework

    Students practice supporting a scientific argument with evidence in order to explain their current thinking about the claims.

    6: Self-Assessment (Optional)

    Students check their understanding of important content in the unit and are given a chance to reflect on additional questions they have about rock transformations.

    Comments (-1)
  • November 13th

    Plate Motion Engineering Internship Day 3

    1: Connecting to Futura Workspace (5 min.)

    Interns are introduced to the day's internship topics and tasks by actively reading the Daily Message.

    (Teacher Only) Introducing Scientific Communication (5 min.)

    Interns are encouraged to think about scientific communication by watching a video message from the project director.

    (Teacher Only) Researching Plate Boundaries (15 min.)

    Interns gather evidence from the Dossier about ocean landforms and plate boundaries and apply it to their study of the Indian Ocean region.

    (Teacher Only) Investigating Earthquakes with TsunamiAlert (20 min.)

    Interns use TsunamiAlert to gather additional evidence on the plate boundary locations in the Indian Ocean based on predicted locations of earthquakes and tsunamis.

    2: After-Hours Work

    Interns review their Daily Message Notes and complete any internship tasks.

    November 14th

     

     Plate Motion Engineering Internship Day 4

     

    1: Connecting to Futura Workspace (5 min.)

    Interns are introduced to the day's internship topics and tasks by actively reading the Daily Message.

    2: Reading About Tsunami Warning Systems (25 min.)

    Interns use Active Reading to learn more about tsunami warning systems and the different sensors used.

    (Teacher Only) Understanding Sensors in TsunamiAlert (15 min.)

    Interns apply their analysis of sensors to different cases of sensor performance in TsunamiAlert to prepare for designing their systems.

    3: After-Hours Work

    Interns complete the Project Summary as a prewriting activity for the introduction of the Final Proposal. Interns may also complete a family after-hours experience where they explain tsunamis to a member of their household.

     

    November 15th

    Plate Motion Engineering Internship Day 5

    1: Connecting to Futura Workspace (5 min.)

    Interns are introduced to the day's internship topics and tasks by actively reading the Daily Message.

    (Teacher Only) Introducing The Design Cycle (10 min.)

    Interns review The Design Cycle phases and how they are integrated into the TsunamiAlert Data sheets in preparation for iterative testing.

    (Teacher Only) Testing Warning System Designs (20 min.)

    Interns use TsunamiAlert to practice The Design Cycle and collect data about the designs to begin addressing the project criteria.

    (Teacher Only) Analyzing Designs (10 min.)

    Interns analyze their early designs and select one design to submit for feedback that best addresses the project criteria.

    2: After-Hours Work

    Interns review their Daily Message Notes and complete any internship tasks.

     

    November 16th

    Plate Motion Engineering Internship Day 6

     

    1: Connecting to Futura Workspace (5 min.)

    Interns are introduced to the day's internship topics and tasks by actively reading the Daily Message.

    (Teacher Only) Reviewing Design Feedback (20 min.)

    Interns actively read the feedback letter and discuss as a group in order to set goals for the criteria and consider trade-offs as they prepare for final iterations.

    (Teacher Only) Testing Final Designs (20 min.)

    Interns continue using The Design Cycle and TsunamiAlert, applying feedback, goals, and priorities they set to develop an optimal design.

    2: After-Hours Work

    Interns reflect on the project trade-offs and submit the Trade-Offs Reflection, a prewriting activity that supports writing the conclusion of the Final Proposal.

    November 17th

    Plate Motion Engineering Internship Day 7

    1: Connecting to Futura Workspace (5 min.)

    Interns are introduced to the day's internship topics and tasks by actively reading the Daily Message.

    (Teacher Only) Introducing the Proposal (10 min.)

    Interns learn about the Proposal phase and the sources of evidence used to support their design decisions.

    (Teacher Only) Outlining Design Decisions (30 min.)

    Interns gather evidence and complete the Proposal Outline for the Design Decisions in order to get feedback from the project director on the strength and relevance of their evidence.

    2: After-Hours Work

    Interns review their Daily Message Notes and complete any internship tasks.

    Comments (-1)
  • Monday November 6th

    Plate Motion End of Unit Assessment

    Students complete the end of unit assessment for plate motion on Edulastic

     

    Tuesday November 7th

    Plate Motion Engineering Internship Day 1

    1: Connecting to Futura Workspace (5 min.)

    Interns are introduced to the Futura Workspace and their internship by reading a welcome message about the project.

    Introducing Futura (10 min.)

    Interns are introduced to Futura and their role as geohazards engineering interns in this fictional company.

    Exploring TsunamiAlert (10 min.)

    Interns explore the Design Tool to engage with the context and support beginning background research on this project's science concepts.

    2: Reading About Tsunamis (20 min.)

    Interns use Active Reading to learn about tsunamis and the damage they can cause.

    3: After-Hours Work

    Interns become more familiar with the project details and criteria by reading the Request for Proposals (RFP) in the Dossier.

     

    Wednesday November 8th          

    Plate Motion Engineering Internship Day 2

    1: Connecting to Futura Workspace (5 min.)

    Interns are introduced to the day's internship topics and tasks by actively reading the Daily Message.

    Introducing the Daily Message Notes (5 min.)

    Interns are introduced to the routine of making notes of daily tasks in order to track their deliverables.

     Modeling a Tsunami Wave (20 min.)

    Interns use a tsunami tank to model the formation of a tsunami wave to help visualize the cause and effect of different ocean wave types.

    2: Reading About Plate Motion and Tsunamis (20 min.)

    Interns use Active Reading to review plate boundaries and learn how plate motion can cause tsunamis.

    3: After-Hours Work

    Interns do a focused second read of Chapters 2-3 in the Dossier in order to better understand whether all earthquakes cause tsunamis.

     

    Thursday November 9th

    Plate Motion Engineering Internship Day 3/Veterans Day Program             

     1: Connecting to Futura Workspace (5 min.)

    Interns are introduced to the day's internship topics and tasks by actively reading the Daily Message.

     Introducing Scientific Communication (5 min.)

    Interns are encouraged to think about scientific communication by watching a video message from the project director.

     Researching Plate Boundaries (15 min.)

    Interns gather evidence from the Dossier about ocean landforms and plate boundaries and apply it to their study of the Indian Ocean region.

    Investigating Earthquakes with TsunamiAlert (20 min.)

    Interns use TsunamiAlert to gather additional evidence on the plate boundary locations in the Indian Ocean based on predicted locations of earthquakes and tsunamis.

    2: After-Hours Work

    Interns review their Daily Message Notes and complete any internship tasks.

     

    Friday November 10th  

    No School

    Comments (-1)
  • Monday

    October 30th

    Plate Motion Louisiana Companion Lesson

    Students read the article “Using Rock as a Clock: Dating the Dinosaur Extinction” to learn what radioactive dating is and how geologists use it to estimate the ages of different rock
    formations. Using this technique, along with other Earth science concepts such as relative dating, geologists can create a time line and explain when different events in Earth’s history occurred. This lesson builds on and reinforces students’ understanding of how information collected from rock can tell the history of Earth. It also provides more context for students to understand how scientists use fossils in their pursuit of understanding Earth’s history in the rock record. After the teacher models Active Reading, students annotate and then reflect on their annotations in partner and whole-class discussions. Students then revisit the article to learn more about radioactive dating. The purpose of this lesson is for students to develop an understanding of what radioactive dating is and
    how it is used to estimate the age of Earth’s materials and different events that happened in Earth’s history.

    Tuesday

    October 31st

     

     Plate Motion Lesson 3.4

     

    1: Warm-Up (10 min.)

    Students apply their understanding of the concepts related to the central mystery of the unit as they use the Sim to re-create what happened to separate the Mesosaurus fossils.

    2: Examining Evidence About Plate Motion (10 min.)

    Students consider all the evidence they have about the plate boundary between South America and Africa.

    3: Reasoning About Plate Motion (15 min.)

    Students use a graphic organizer called the Reasoning Tool to explain how the evidence about the plate boundary between South America and Africa relates to one of two claims.

    (Teacher Only) Video: Indian Plate Motion (5 min.)

    Students watch a video about Dr. Wilson, the real-life paleontologist who was introduced in Lesson 1.2. The video helps students make connections between what they have learned about plate motion and real-world research.

    (Teacher Only) Explaining the Homework Assignment (5 min.)

    The teacher explains the homework assignment so that students will be prepared to write a scientific argument independently at home.

    4: Homework

    Students practice written argumentation as they write a concluding message to Dr. Moraga about how the Mesosaurus fossils got so far apart from each other.

    5: Self-Assessment (Optional)

    Students check their understanding of important content in the unit, and are given a chance to reflect on additional questions they have about why the fossils of Mesosaurus that once lived together are found in different locations on Earth now.

     

    Wednesday

    November 1st

    Plate Motion Lesson 4.1

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students are provided with a plate boundary map and are invited to speculate about the geology near the state of Jalisco in Mexico.

    2: Introducing the Jalisco Block (5 min.)

    Students are introduced to the context, question, and claims that they will consider during the Science Seminar sequence.

    3: Analyzing Evidence (25 min.)

    Students examine and annotate evidence about the movement of the Jalisco Block in preparation for sorting each piece of evidence based on the claim it supports.

    4: Sorting Evidence (10 min.)

    Students sort the evidence based on which claim they think it supports in order to help them organize their thinking in advance of the Science Seminar discussion in the next lesson.

    5: Homework

    Students prepare for the Science Seminar discussion by reading about an analogous case of plate motion in Baja California.

    Thursday

    November 2nd

    Plate Motion Lesson 4.3

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students consider how a single piece of evidence can be used to support opposing claims.

    2: Using the Reasoning Tool (15 min.)

    Students use the Reasoning Tool to lay out their arguments in preparation for writing.

    3: Organizing Ideas in the Reasoning Tool (10 min.)

    Students plan how they will use their Reasoning Tools to write their scientific arguments. This activity provides an opportunity for an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ ability to organize the evidence they use to construct arguments in support of their claims.

    4: Writing a Scientific Argument (15 min.)

    Students apply their knowledge of plate motion as they write a convincing scientific argument about the Science Seminar Question. Student writing represents an opportunity for students to demonstrate understanding through a three dimensional performance. Student writing can be scored by referencing the provided rubric in the Plate Motion Rubrics for Final Written Argument (in Digital Resources).

    5: Homework

    Students engage in an important part of the writing process by reviewing and revising their written arguments.

    6: Self-Assessment (Optional)

    Students check their understanding of important content in the unit, and are given a chance to reflect on additional questions they have about why the fossils of Mesosaurus that once lived together are found in different locations on Earth now.

     

    7. Students will complete Flocabulary work on plate motion in class

     

    Friday

    November 3rd

    Building Pangaea Gizmo

    • Learn the names of major landmasses.
    • Explain the theory of continental drift.
    • Fit the landmasses together to form an ancient supercontinent called Pangaea.
    • Use several types of evidence (fossils, rocks, glaciers) to revise their model of Pangaea.
    • Practice plate motion review blooket before end of unit assessment for 11/6/23
    • Make up any missed assignments

     

    Comments (-1)
  • Monday

    October 23rd

    Plate Motion Lesson 2.7

    1: Warm-Up (8 min.)

    Students are introduced to Iceland as a geologically interesting place in order to engage them in the lesson’s activities.

    The teacher uses short videos to review concepts and introduces the lesson’s activities.

    2: Learning About Iceland (25 min.)

    Students read a short introduction and then create models to review concepts from Chapters 1 and 2 that they have not yet mastered or to broaden their understanding. Students who have mastered all the content think about a new context.

    3: Homework

    The teacher introduces the differentiated homework assignments to students.

    Students are provided with an opportunity to critique inaccurate models for homework.

    4: Self-Assessment (Optional)

    Students check their understanding of important content in the unit, and are given a chance to reflect on additional questions they have about why the fossils of Mesosaurus that once lived together are found in different locations on Earth now.

    Tuesday

    October 24th

     

     Plate Motion Lesson 3.1

     

     

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students consider their prior knowledge about and experiences of plate motion.

    (Teacher Only) Video: Plate Motion and GPS (10 min.)

    Through an engaging animation, students learn how GPS receivers are used to track plate motion.

    2: Observing How Plates Move (15 min.)

    The Plate Motion Sim provides students with evidence for the rate of plate movement. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ understanding of the use of patterns to obtain information.

    3: Word Relationships (15 min.)

    Students engage in a discourse routine that enables them to make sense of the evidence they’ve gathered about rate of plate motion. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ understanding of the rate of plate motion.

    4: Homework

    Students synthesize what they have learned so far about plate motion as they write about whether they think the plate movement that separated the Mesosaurus fossils happened slowly or suddenly.

    Wednesday

    October 25th

    Plate Motion Lesson 3.2

     

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students reflect on what they learned about the evidence scientists use to understand the rate of plate motion.

    2: The Value of Fossil Evidence (10 min.)

    Students are introduced to the Investigation Question, and they consider how understanding current plate motion might help to explain past plate motion.

    3: Active Reading: “A Continental Puzzle” (20 min.)

    Students read and annotate an article about how Alfred Wegener developed the theory of plate tectonics. They focus on identifying challenging or unfamiliar words or phrases as they read. This activity provides an opportunity for an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ ability to engage with scientific texts and identify challenging or unfamiliar words.

    4: Discussing Annotations (10 min.)

    Students select interesting or unanswered questions from the reading they would like to share. Students then discuss challenging words they identified when they read. Students’ annotations provide an opportunity for an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ annotation skills, reading comprehension, and content understanding.

    5: Homework

    Students use the Sorting Tool to become familiar with the time scale of major events that have occurred on Earth and read a second article in which they learn about the seventeenth-century scientist, Nicholas Steno, who first developed one of the fundamental principles of geography and Earth’s history: that older rock layers are layered beneath newer rock layers.

    Thursday

    October 26th

    Plate Motion Lesson 3.3

     

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students use their understanding about the rate of plate motion to predict how much the continents will move in the future.

    2: Rereading “A Continental Puzzle” (15 min.)

    Students reread part of the article to consider the rate of plate motion over millions of years.

    3: Reconstructing Gondwanaland (25 min.)

    Students use physical materials to reconstruct an ancient supercontinent, based on evidence and their knowledge of plate motion. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ understanding that maps of ancient land masses reveal how Earth’s plates have moved.

    4: Homework

    Students revise their Warm-Up responses based on the new understandings they constructed during the lesson.

    Friday

    October 27th

    Plate Motion Flextention Modeling Plate Boundaries

    This hands-on activity builds on and reinforces students’ understanding of plate motion and what happens at different types of plate boundaries. Students use a range of available materials to develop and build physical models that show what happens at divergent boundaries and convergent boundaries. They share their models with another pair, explaining their reasoning for choosing specific materials to represent parts of Earth’s outer layer and demonstrating how their model works. Then, students analyze
    their models and explain what the model does well and what is inaccurate or left out. The purpose of this lesson is for students to demonstrate their understanding of what happens at divergent and convergent plate boundaries in their own way. 

     

    Comments (-1)
  •  
     
     
     
     
     

    Monday 

     
     
     
     
     

    October 16th 

     
     
     
     
     

    Plate Motion Lesson 2.3 

     
     
     
     
     

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.) 

    Students connect their investigation of convergent and divergent plate boundaries to the mystery of how the Mesosaurus fossils got so far apart. 

     

    2: Second Read of “Listening to Earth” (20 min.) 

    Students reread part of the article to describe movement at convergent and divergent plate boundaries, and to identify similarities and differences between what happens at each type of plate boundary. 

     

    3: Creating Physical Models of Plate Motion (20 min.) 

    Students work in groups to create physical models that represent plate motion and plate-mantle interactions at both divergent and convergent plate boundaries. 

     
     
     
     
     

    Tuesday 

     
     
     
     

    October 17th 

     
     
     
     

     

     Plate Motion Lesson 2.4 

     

     
     
     
     

     

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.) 

    Students reflect on the weaknesses of the physical models they created in the previous lesson.

     

    2: Explaining What Happens at Plate Boundaries (10 min.) 

    Students use the Modeling Tool to create cross sections of convergent and divergent plate boundaries. Students add arrows to indicate the direction each plate is moving at each plate boundary. 

     

    3: Exploring Plate Boundaries in the Sim (20 min.) 

    Students use the Sim to gather evidence about the phenomena that occur at convergent and divergent plate boundaries. They then add this information to their Plate Boundary Comparison Charts. 

     

    4: Revising Models of Plate Boundaries (10 min.) 

    Students return to their models in order to integrate evidence from the Sim. They add labels to indicate the landforms present at plate boundaries and the plate-mantle interactions that happen at each boundary. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ understanding of plate motion and plate-mantle interactions at plate boundaries, as well as their development and use of models. 

     
     
     
     
     

    Wednesday 

     
     
     
     

    October 18th 

     
     
     
     

    Plate Motion Flextention Day 1 

     
     
     
     

     

     This hands-on activity builds on and reinforces students’ understanding of plate motion and the landforms created by different types of plate motion. Students develop their own physical models showing how plate motion can create mountain ranges. Students compare the models they create to how the Plate Motion Sim shows mountains forming during plate motion. Next, students apply their understanding by exploring locations near plate boundaries in Google Earth. Students choose one location and write a short argument about the type of plate boundary they think is at that location, based on landforms they observe. The purpose of this lesson is for students to get more exposure to landforms created by plate motion. 

     
     
     
     
     

    Thursday 

     
     
     
     

    October 19th 

     
     
     
     

    Plate Motion Lesson 2.5 

     
     
     
     

    1: Warm-Up (8 min.) 

    Students consider the significance of new evidence about the plate boundary between the South American Plate and African Plate. 

     

    2: Interpreting Plate Boundary Evidence (17 min.) 

    Students evaluate all available evidence about the plate boundary between the South American Plate and African Plate to answer the Chapter 2 Question. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ understanding of how patterns are used in the study of geology to better understand the movement of plates. 

     

    3: Modeling Plate Motion (20 min.) 

    Students use the Modeling Tool to model their current understanding of how the South American Plate and African Plate moved. 

     

    4: Homework 

    Students use the evidence they’ve collected to write an answer to the Chapter 2 Question. 

     

    5: Family Homework Experience (Optional) 

    Explaining divergent and convergent plate boundaries to a member of their household supports student learning through shared experiences with family. 

     
     
     
     
     

    Friday 

     
     
     
     

    October 20th 

     
     
     
     

    Plate Motion Lesson 2.6 

     
     
     
     

    Students complete a Critical Juncture Assessment (CJ) consisting of 12 multiple-choice questions and 2 written-response questions. The CJ is designed to reveal students’ current levels of understanding about the core content from the unit, and the results are used to place each student at a particular level of the Progress Build (PB). The assessment results indicate students’ progress from the beginning of the unit and are used to group students for differentiated instruction in the next lesson. As with the Pre-Unit Assessment, the CJ includes content beyond what a student is expected to have mastered. Therefore, the CJ is not intended to be used for summative purposes. 

    Comments (-1)
  • Monday October 9th

     

    No School
    Tuesday

    October 10th

     

     Gizmo Student Exploration Plate Tectonics

     

     The Plate Tectonics Gizmo illustrates four types of plate
    boundaries: transform, collisional, subduction, and divergent.
    Students can watch an animation of plate movements at
    each boundary, and see where these boundaries are located
    on a world map.
    The Student Exploration sheet contains four activities:
     Activity A – Students describe and locate transform plate boundaries.
     Activity B – Students describe convergent boundaries and locate collision zones.
    Activity C – Students describe and locate subduction zones.
    Activity D – Students describe and locate divergent plate boundaries.

    Wednesday October 11th

    Plate Motion Lesson 2.1

     

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students evaluate the Chapter 2 Question: How did the South American Plate and African Plate move?

    2: Considering the Mantle (10 min.)

    Students use the Sim to gather evidence about the mantle in order to draw conclusions about this soft, solid layer of rock underneath the plates.

    3: Exploring Characteristics of the Mantle (10 min.)

    Students investigate a soft, solid material (Silly Putty) and a hard, solid material (plastic cube) to learn about the characteristics of Earth’s mantle.

    4: Word Relationships (20 min.)

    Students engage in a discourse routine that enables them to increase their understanding of unit vocabulary and to practice using it.

    5: Homework

    Students consider another rocky planet and apply what they have learned about how the consistency of the mantle affects plate motion.

    Thursday October 12th

    Plate Motion Lesson 2.2

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    In preparation for reading “Listening to Earth,” students make a prediction about what they could see at a plate boundary under the ocean.

    2: Active Reading: “Listening to Earth” (25 min.)

    Students practice the Active Reading approach while learning about how plates move toward and away from each other at plate boundaries. This activity provides an opportunity for an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ ability to engage with scientific texts and identify challenging words.

    3: Discussing Annotations (15 min.)

    Students discuss their thinking about the reading in order to share important insights and surface alternate conceptions. Students then discuss challenging words they identified when they read. Students’ annotations provide an opportunity for an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ annotation skills, reading comprehension, and content understanding.

    4: Homework

    Students make connections between what they are learning and what they have learned about other science topics in the past.

    Friday October 13th

    Plate Motion Vocabulary

     

    1. Blooket Vocabulary Practice

    2. Vocabulary Quiz after Review

    3. Make up Assignments

    Comments (-1)
  • Monday October 2nd 

    Plate Motion Lesson 1.2

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students activate prior knowledge about fossils and what they tell us about Earth’s history.

    (Teacher Only) Why Geologists Value Fossils (8 min.)

    An engaging documentary video activates and enhances students’ background knowledge about fossils, providing a foundation for the unit’s central mystery and students’ role in solving it.

    2: Introducing Mesosaurus (12 min.)

    A short article and a series of projections introduce students to the idea that Earth’s surface has changed over time and provide more information about students’ role as student geologists. Students are enlisted to figure out why Mesosaurus fossils are found so far apart.

    3: Exploring Cross Sections (20 min.)

    A jigsaw discussion about cross-section diagrams based on information from a range of scientific drilling sites on Earth engages students in thought and discussion about what the land underneath Earth’s surface is like. From this, students conclude that Earth’s outer layer is made of hard, solid rock.

    4: Homework

    Students create a visual representation of their ideas about the composition of Earth’s outer layer.

    Tuesday

    October 3rd

     

     Plate Motion Lesson 1.3

     

     

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    An initial exploration of the Plate Motion Sim gives students the opportunity to investigate the Sim’s features and to ask questions.

    (Teacher Only) Revealing Earth’s Outer Layer (5 min.)

    An animation of a three-dimensional computer model helps students visualize what Earth’s outer layer looks like, and it helps them make a connection to the visualizations in the Sim.

    2: Exploring Earth’s Outer Layer (15 min.)

    A guided exploration of the Plate Motion Sim provides students the opportunity to understand the Sim’s features and to make careful observations about how Earth’s outer layer is represented.

    3: Analyzing Maps (20 min.)

    Students overlay data from a map of Earth’s plate boundaries on a map of earthquakes in order to identify locations where earthquakes, evidence of motion in the geosphere, occur. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ engagement with the crosscutting concept of Patterns.

    4: Homework

    Students reflect on a model that represents Earth’s plates and plate boundaries. They then critique the model as a way of demonstrating their understanding of Earth’s outer layer.

    Wednesday October 4th

    Plate Motion Lesson 1.4

     

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students articulate what they think about the relationship between earthquakes and plate motion.

    2: Simulating Earthquakes (17 min.)

    Using the Plate Motion Sim, students gather evidence to support or refute the claim they selected in the Warm-Up.

    3: Modeling a Plate Boundary (15 min.)

    Students demonstrate their understanding of how earthquake patterns are related to plate boundaries by creating a model depicting this relationship along the plate boundary between Africa and South America. The teacher uses this opportunity as an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ understanding of what plates are and that plates can move.

    4: Considering the Mesosaurus Exhibit (8 min.)

    Students consider two competing claims about the unit’s central mystery (how did the Mesosaurus fossils get so far apart?).

    5: Homework

    Students explain their thinking about the evidence they have gathered so far.

    6: Self-Assessment (Optional)

    Students check their understanding of important content in the unit, and are given a chance to reflect on additional questions they have about why the fossils of Mesosaurus that once lived together are found in different locations on Earth now.

    Thursday October 5th

    No School Fall Break

     

    Friday October 6th

    No School Fall Break

     

     

    Comments (-1)
  • September 25th

    Thermal Energy Lesson 4.2

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students choose a piece of evidence that supports their preferred claim in order to organize their thinking for the Science Seminar discussion.

    2: Preparing for the Science Seminar (15 min.)

    Students share their ideas about the claims and evidence with their partners so that they can practice their arguments in a low-stakes environment prior to engaging in the whole-class Science Seminar discussion.

    (Teacher Only) Introducing the Science Seminar (5 min.)

    The teacher prepares students for a productive and participatory discussion by introducing them to the procedures and expectations of the Science Seminar.

    3: Participating in the Science Seminar (20 min.)

    Students apply content knowledge and argumentation skills as they engage in a student-led discussion. This offers an opportunity for an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ understanding of much of the unit’s science content and students’ progress in the practice of making arguments from evidence.

    4: Homework

    Students reflect on how the Science Seminar changed their thinking in order to better understand the way discussion can stimulate new ideas in science.

     

    September 26th

     

     Thermal Energy Lesson  4.3

     

    1: Warm-Up (5 min.)

    Students consider two different arguments in order to begin to think about how reasoning can make an argument more convincing.

    2: Using the Reasoning Tool (15 min.)

    Students use the Reasoning Tool to lay out their arguments in preparation for the writing task.

    3: Organizing Ideas in the Reasoning Tool (10 min.)

    Students complete the Reasoning Tool by organizing their thinking about the evidence and claims from the Science Seminar. This offers an opportunity for an On-the-Fly Assessment of students’ ability to organize the evidence they use to construct arguments in support of their claims.

    4: Writing a Scientific Argument (15 min.)

    Students apply what they have learned in this unit to write a convincing scientific argument about the Science Seminar Question. Student writing represents an opportunity for students to demonstrate understanding through a three-dimensional performance. Student writing can be scored by referencing the provided rubric in the Thermal Energy Rubrics for Final Written Argument (in Digital Resources).

    5: Homework

    Students engage in an important part of the writing process by reviewing and revising their written arguments.

    6: Self-Assessment (Optional)

    Students check their understanding of key content in the unit, and are given a chance to reflect on additional questions they have about thermal energy.

    September 27th

    Thermal Energy Lesson 4.4

     Students will complete the End of Unit Assessment on Thermal Energy on Edulastic

    September 28th

    Plate Motion Lesson 1.1

    Students will complete the pre-test on Plate Motion to see students prior knowledge of the unit

    September 29th

    Half Day

    Students will make up assignments, Half Day Homecoming

     

    Comments (-1)