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We just finished a life science unit about Salmon. I like to try to combine Language Arts with Science whenever I can. That's why I came up with my Non-Fiction Animal research units for Primary classrooms.
Where I live, we have a program where we can hatch live Salmon eggs in the classroom, watch them grow into fingerlings, and then release them into a local stream to complete their lives.
I find that when you bring live animals into the classroom, it really sparks the kids interest in the topic. We are still waiting for our little salmon to grow some more, but the kids enjoy checking out the tank every few days to see how big they are getting.
First we looked through some videos I found on YouTube about Salmon. Then we colored the worksheet below on the Life Cycle of a Salmon. You can grab your own copy of this worksheet here.
Next we read through my little non-fiction reader, from my animal research pack.
to get your own copy. It's only $2.99.
Then, as you can see above, the kids filled in a few brainstorming frames about the facts they were learning about Salmon. I like to let them choose their own facts first to spark their interest, but then I also like to give them the frame with the speech bubbles to help them focus on more of the pertinent facts. Finally I had them write a rough draft and then a good copy which I put on the bulletin board with some salmon art.
We also fleshed out their three facts into these little books on Facts about Salmon. I really like making these little books and I put them in the reading corner so that the kids can read each other's books . They really enjoy this. Below you can see some of their final copies.
And that's it! The kids loved doing this unit. Next I'm planning to do an animal inquiry unit, using these little packs - check back soon to see my post about that. Below are some links to my bundles of animal research products. Click on the pictures to go to my store.
So here's a cute idea for Earth Day.
How about Re-Using newspaper for art?
Here's what we created this week in my class.
First, you need newspaper and a variety of shades of blue and green.
Next cover a page of paper with each colour.
Then, rip the paper into strips about 1 1/2" wide.
Then cut a large circle out of blue or green construction paper. Sorry for the poor quality photo below. I have a flowered tablecloth to protect my table, so it makes the project difficult to see.
I gave the children some of the strips of painted newspaper and showed them how to rip them into smaller squares and then the kids used gluesticks to create a collage.
I thought I would need to trim the edges, but the kids did a great job of staying close to the edge and I thought it gave the "earth" a more interesting look and added texture to the project.
I found the little foam people at the dollar store last year, but you can buy something similar at Michaels. The kids loved adding the details to their little people. For some reason Blogger keeps turning these photos on their side, so some of the people are upside down. Sorry for the mess.
Anyway, here's a look at the final project. I love how bright it is. And it was very easy to make.
So here's a simple Language Arts idea for Earth Day.
This lesson idea is easy to apply to any book you may read to your class.
First I read my students The Lorax by Dr. Seuss
Then we went over the storyline.
With a little help from me, we came up with 19 steps to the story.
Next, gave the kids some tips on how to draw the main characters of the story.
Next I cut the chart paper into strips and gave each student a sentence to copy down.
I used the Lorax blackline master from What the Teacher Wants' "Going Green" Earth Day Unit.
I drew a picture for the cover as we are going to put all these pages into a class book.
After the cover is laminated, I will put all the kids pages together and bind it as a book. I'm glad I numbered the strips and I made the children write the number down on their page so that I can assemble the book in the right order.
Below are a few examples of my student's pages (in no particular order)
Some of their pictures really made me laugh. I'm always amazed at children's creativity. Aren't you?