Unit One Organizer: PLANTS 5 Weeks

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1 The following instructional plan is part of a GaDOE collection of Unit Frameworks, Performance Tasks, examples of Student Work, and Teacher Commentary. Many more GaDOE approved instructional plans are available by using the Search Standards feature located on GeorgiaStandards.Org. Unit One Organizer: PLANTS 5 Weeks OVERVIEW: Kindergarten students have a natural interest in the world around them. In this unit on plants, students will recognize, classify, and identify the similarities and differences in plants according to their attributes (color, size and appearance). STANDARDS ADDRESSED IN THIS UNIT SKL1 Students will sort living organisms and non-living materials into groups by observable physical attributes. c. Group plants according to their observable features such as appearance, size, etc. SKL2 Students will compare the similarities and differences in groups of organisms. b. Explain the similarities and differences in plants (color, size, appearance, etc.). SKCS5 Students will communicate scientific ideas and activities clearly. a. Describe and compare things in terms of number, shape, texture, size, weight, color, and motion. b. Begin to draw pictures that portray features of the thing being described. SKCS1 Students will be aware of the importance of curiosity, honesty, openness, and skepticism in science and will exhibit these traits in their own efforts to understand how the world works. a. Raise questions about the world around you and be willing to seek answers to some of the questions by making careful observations (5 senses) and trying things out. July 2007 Page 1 of 10

2 ENDURING UNDERSTANDINGS Plants can be grouped together using appearance, size, etc. Plants are similar and different in many ways. ESSENTIAL QUESTIONS: 1. How can living things be so different yet be so alike? 2. How are plants similar and different? MISCONCEPTIONS Bushes are baby trees. Trees are only considered plants when they are small. Trees, grass, vegetables, weeds are not plants. PROPER CONCEPTIONS A shrub or bush is distinguished from a tree by its multiple stems and lower height, usually less than 6 m tall. A tree is a large plant. The term generally applies to plants at least 6 m (20 ft) high at maturity and having secondary branches supported on a main stem or stems. Trees and grasses are plants. A vegetable is the edible part of a plant. A weed in a general sense is a plant. More specifically, the term is often used to describe plants that grow and reproduce aggressively. July 2007 Page 2 of 10

3 Concept Know/Do Language Evidence Plants are grouped together by observable features. Compile a class book of drawings and/or pictures of plants such as grass, trees, flowers, fruits and vegetables. (If the class book is about plants we eat, it would show that there are many different sizes, colors, shapes of plants that are foods). Appearance, size, color, shape, taste, smell, look, feel. Hands on Inquiry Science Journals Graphic organizers Class book Observe and sort various fruits and vegetables using your senses: how they taste, how they smell, how they look, how they feel. July 2007 Page 3 of 10

4 Concept Know/Do Language Evidence Similarities and differences of plants. Group pictures of plants and/or flowers showing their similarities and differences (color, shape, size, appearance, etc). Alike, different, similarities, differences, sort, color, shape, size, appearances, smell, taste, see, touch. Hands on Inquiry Science Journals Graphic organizers Observe different flowers and plants. Use your senses to compare them. Smell them, taste foods that are plants, compare the colors, count petals, etc. Collect different leaves. Sort the leaves into groups according to size, color, shape, etc. Explain how even though the leaves come from a tree, there are different kinds of leaves. July 2007 Page 4 of 10

5 EVIDENCE OF LEARNING: By the conclusion of this unit, students should be able to demonstrate the following competencies: Culminating Activity: GRASPS Goal: Apply knowledge and understanding of plant similarities and differences in a real world scenario. Role: Junior scientist Audience: Peers Scenario: You are a junior scientist visiting an island with no people. Some people want to move to the island but you need to decide if there are plants on the island that can be eaten. There are several different types of plants that need to be sorted and placed into groups by their similarities and differences (color, shape, size, appearance, etc.) You will work in small groups to discuss how to place your plants in groups (which plants you can eat and which plants you cannot eat) and explain to other scientists how you made your decisions. You need to use your five senses to help you compare the plants. Product: Your group will construct a graphic organizer to show how the plants are alike and different. You will construct a second graphic organizer to show which of the plants can be eaten and which cannot be eaten. You will present your findings to your classmates. July 2007 Page 5 of 10

6 Sequence of Activities, Tasks, and Assessments for Organization TASKS The collection of the following tasks represents the level of depth, rigor and complexity expected of all students to demonstrate evidence of learning. Task: (Lessons will take more than one day to complete. Timeframes are suggested and are dependent on your own class.) Lesson 1 (2 3 days) EQ: How can living things be so different yet so alike? A variety of plant pictures or actual plants. Magazines, paper, art supplies. Show students pictures of a tree, a flower, grass, fruit, vegetable (or possibly bring in a variety of plants) and ask them to tell how these living things could be related but are very different in the way they look. Have each group of 2 4 students compile a group book of drawings and/or pictures of plants such as grass, trees, flowers, fruits and vegetables. (Example: If the group book is about plants we eat, it would show the different sizes, colors and shapes of plants that are food). You may choose to have students draw pictures of plants or cut pictures out from magazines. Teacher observation, group book. Lesson 2 (2-3 days) EQ: How can living things be so different yet so alike? July 2007 Page 6 of 10

7 Variety of fruits and vegetables (pieces for each group), observation journal, graph paper, art supplies. With the large group, ask students for ways they might place plants in groups. (You may want to talk about how we use some plants for food, some for building, some for clothing). Discuss attributes that could be used to place plants into different groups (flower, no flowers, green, not green, food plants, non-food plants, etc) Have a variety of fruits and vegetables for each group. Tell groups that your senses could be used to place plants in groups. Ask the groups to observe and sort the fruits and vegetables by using their senses of taste, smell, look and how they feel. My Observation Journal. Please be aware of any students you may have with food allergies. Have students graph the information from their inquiry by one of the following attributes: color, texture, taste (sweet or sour), and smell. Fruit and Vegetable Graph. Fruit and Vegetable Graph Lesson 3 (2-3 days) EQ: How can living things be so different yet so alike? Give each group of 2 4 students a variety of plant pictures. Have students make observations and sort pictures according to color and graph their results on chart paper. Plant Sort. Have students use the same pictures and ask Can you sort the pictures in a different way?. Allow groups to share with the class how they sorted their plants the second time. (As teacher, encourage students to sort their plant groups by size, appearance, habitat, etc.) July 2007 Page 7 of 10

8 Have students use the same pictures and sort them yet another different way. Allow groups to share with the class how they sorted their plants the third time. Plant sort and informal observation Lesson 4 (2 3 days) EQ: How can living things be so different yet so alike? Be aware that some children may have allergies that are triggered by flowers. Check with parents prior to doing this activity. Variety of flowers, Planting a Rainbow by Lois Ehlert, herbs (if teacher plans on incorporating herbs into the lesson) Put out a variety of flowers and encourage the children to touch and smell the flowers. Give students plenty of time for exploration and talk to them about the flowers prior to asking questions. Can these flowers be sorted? Have students sort the flowers. Ask students if anyone sorted their flowers by smell. Ask students if smell could be a way to sort plants. (At this time, you could bring in herbs if you have access to fresh herbs to show other plants that smell). Literature Connection: Planting a Rainbow by Lois Ehlert. Informal questioning and observation Lesson 5 (2-3days) EQ: How are plants similar and different? July 2007 Page 8 of 10

9 Plants, chart paper Provide a wide variety of plants for each group in the classroom. Have students, working in groups of 2 4, observe and identify how the plants in their group are all alike (similar). Using chart paper for a whole group activity, have students share with their classmates how their plants are alike. Using the same plants, have the students observe and identify how the plants are all different. Using chart paper for a whole group activity have students share with their classmates how their plants different. Teacher questioning and informal observation Lesson 6 (1 2 days) EQ: How are plants similar and different? Hand lenses, plant school walk activity sheet Take students on a walk of the school yard. Ask them to make careful observations and identify anything they see that they believe are plants. Have students pick two very different plants (example tree and a flower) and tell how they are similar and how they are different. Provide drawing paper for them to draw the similarities and differences. Plant School Walk. Student drawings of similarities and differences. July 2007 Page 9 of 10

10 TEACHER INFORMATION AND RESOURCES AIMS Education Foundation Primarily Plants AIMS Education Foundation Cycles of Knowing and Growing AIMS Education Foundation Exploring Environments More Picture Perfect Science Lessons: Using Children s Books to Guide Inquiry, K 4 by Karen Ansberry and Emily Morgan (NSTA Press) Rising to the Challenge of the National Science Education Standards by Sheryl Mercier and Karen Ostulund (NSTA Press) Start Young! Early Childhood Science Activities: An NSTA Press Journals Collection (NSTA Press) Websites Website with several activities including Venn Diagrams A variety of plant activities Web site with a variety of graphic organizers Website with a variety of science movies Website with information about trees and a leaf sorting activity Literature Connections Growing Vegetable Soup by Lois Ehlert Planting a Rainbow by Lois Ehlert The Tiny Seed by Eric Carle Jack s Garden by Henry Cole One Bean by Anne Rockwell Oh Say Can You Seed: All About Flowering Plants (Cat in the Hat Learning Library) by Bonnie Worth Are Trees Alive? by Debbie S. Miller Our Tree Named Steve by Alan Zweibel Be A Friend to Trees by Patricia Lauber July 2007 Page 10 of 10

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