This semester I plan to use the Grade Two Science Standard 2.5 Earth’s Resources. I chose this standard because I enjoyed my Earth Science and Oceanography classes in college and have since looked forward to creating interesting lessons to help my students learn about these topics while also instilling a love of learning about nature as well as a respect for it. The concepts in this standard are very important for children to learn, as they are real challenges that we face today and will face in the future.
With the advent of newer technology designed to study deforestation, erosion, and air pollution, it is imperative that children today learn what is currently being used so they might adapt in using or even develop tomorrow’s technology to help resolve these very important issues.
2.8 The student will investigate and understand that plants produce oxygen and food, are a source of useful products, and provide benefits in nature. Key concepts include
a) important plant products are identified and classified;
b) the availability of plant products affects the development of a geographic area;
c) plants provide oxygen, homes, and food for many animals; and
d) plants can help reduce erosion (VA DOE, p.7).
From looking at the standard, it appears that there will be several opportunities to use technology to help create different activities to accommodate different learning styles. Options could include viewing satellite imaging to show erosion around areas where wetlands have been destroyed; or creating a long-term experiment and using time-lapse photos or video to see the difference between erosion speed for soil with plants and soils without plants. The class could even create an online journal to track the progress. Other options could include watching videos on the topics, and the children could possibly even create a virtual model to show the oxygen/carbon-dioxide cycle. And if ambitious, the children could create their very own public service announcement (PSA) on deforestation. These activities would be tied into non-digital activities, like field trips, in-class terrariums, books, and research to create a comprehensive learning environment for this standard.
I look forward to seeing this semester if my ideas now will be able to form into effective lessons that will technology to enhance the students’ learning experiences. I think that by observing and recording a long-term experiment, children will be able to hone their scientific writing skills. Also, by keeping a classroom online journal, the children will need to collaborate to agree on the entry. In writing a PSA, the children will need to be able to sequence a script and organize their thoughts and research. Finally, by creating a virtual model, the children would need to apply their understanding of the cycle in order to build their model. By using different technology to teach this standard, the children will get learn much more than the required material. I am excited to learn more about this standard and the ways in which I can use technology to enhance my lessons.
Virginia Department of Education. (January, 2010). Science Standards for Learning for Virginia Public Schools. Retrieved from: http://www.doe.virginia.gov/testing/sol/standards_docs/science/2010/k-6/stds_science2.pdf.