Subject(s): Science, English Language Arts
Grade Level(s): 4
Computer for Presenter, Computers for Students, Internet Connection, LCD Projector
Resource supports reading in content area:Yes
Freely Available: Yes
Keywords: environment, wildlife, recycle, reuse, reduce, balanced ecosystem, environmental waste, ecosystem, habitats, plastic bags, paper bags, natural resources, renewable resources, nonrenewable resources, Earth
Lesson Plan Template: Model Eliciting Activity (MEA)
Prior to introducing the MEA, the teacher will as the readiness and comprehension questions of the whole class to have students discuss their thoughts and ideas. Students will have a chance to ask each other questions whenever needed.
- What are some examples of how humans threaten the biodiversity of a balanced ecosystem?
- How can we preserve a balanced ecosystem?
- What are some things we can do?
Feedback to Students
The students will receive continuous feedback throughout this MEA. The teacher will introduce the objective of the MEA. Allow the students to work individually first, and then form four-person teams. As they work, the teacher will walk around and ask reflective questions about their plan and strategy to solve the client's problem. The teacher will give feedback specific to each group (or individual) regarding their process and procedure for solving the problem.
- The teacher will determine if the students have reached the learning targets for this resource throughout the group discussion time, especially when asking the comprehension questions.
- The teacher will determine the students understanding of the science standard by using a writing rubric to grade student's writing on Natural Resources and the Environment.
- The students will receive a language arts grade based on the attached student recommendation rubric after the completion of this MEA.
The students will be able to:
- use prior knowledge and problem solving skills to solve non-routine problems and real world situations.
- recognize that reusing, recycling, and conserving natural resources improves and protects our quality of life.
- recognize the costs and risks to society and the environment posed by the irresponsible use of nonrenewable energy sources.
- collaborate in teams.
- produce clear and coherent writing in which the development and organization are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
- present information, findings, and evidence to communicate their reasoning effectively and coherently to peers.
The students will need to know:
- how to work as a team.
- how to communicate results to their peers.
- how to draw evidence from informational text.
- how to use reasons and evidence in order to support analysis.
- what natural resources are and how they are used.
- the difference between renewable and nonrenewable resources.
- what recycling is and what the benefits of recycling are.
Guiding/Reflective Questions can be asked throughout the lesson.
- Students will read articles in the Supplemental Reading Section (whole group), answer comprehension questions, and initiate class discussion to elicit prior knowledge.
- Students are presented with the first client letter and dataset 1. Students respond to the Readiness Questions. Lead a class discussion to ensure understanding of the task. This discussion can also focus on energy conservation.
- Individually, students brainstorm several ways to solve this problem, and will write down ideas to share with the team.
- Students are then grouped in teams of four according to the teacher's professional judgment.
- In teams, students share their best idea with their teammates. Students should apply their background knowledge and read the suggested resources to help contribute to the solution.
- If teams finish early, students can independently write a reflection paragraph to describe how they have contributed to a balanced healthy environment by using renewable and nonrenewable resources.
- Students receive the second client letter and dataset 2, in addition to their work from task 1.
- Teams will then evaluate and revise their first procedure as necessary with the second dataset, and make any necessary changes.
- Students will write a second letter to the client explaining their procedures in detail and how and why the procedure did or did not change.
- After all teams have completed their second letters to the client, the teacher will ask teams the Reflection Questions 2.
- Finally, the teams will present their results to the rest of the class and turn in their written recommendation to the teacher.
These resources should be used before beginning this MEA to provide background knowledge and review learned concepts about the impact of human usage of the earth's natural resources.
The following articles from http://www.readworks.org/ are written at a fourth grade reading level and have comprehension questions that can be answered independently by students after reading the passage. Note: You must set up a free ReadWorks account to access the materials.
- "Why Recycle?" (Lexile 590)
- "Recycling – How it works" (Lexile 720)
Optional: A reference sheet listing several websites on the topic of natural resources and recycling is attached. Students may choose to visit the websites to read additional information.
- Do you agree or disagree with your classmates' ideas? Why or why not?
- How do you know if you have the best recommendation for your client?
- What are the most important things to consider in your procedures?
- How challenging is it to have only one group recommendation?
Reading Passage 1
- Who is the client? (Greens R Us, a fruits and vegetables business)
- Why does the client need our help? (They need help deciding which type of shopping bags to give to their customers.)
- What is the client asking your team to do? (Analyze the information given to the make a recommendation of which type of shopping bags to use)
- Do you think there is more than one answer to the client's problem? Why or why not? (There may be more than one solution. Students must read the information to identify and analyze the pros and cons of each option to make a recommendation.)
Data Set 1
Letter Template 1
- What are the most important categories to consider in your procedure? (All the information provided by client.)
- Is the information provided enough to help you solve your client's problem? (The information given is sufficient. Students will need to review and organize the information accordingly. For example: pros, cons, environmental risks, etc.)
- Will there only be one solution? (There might be more than one solution depending on how different students analyze and discuss the information.)
Reading Passage 2
Data Set 2
Letter Template 2
Additional Instructions or Materials
Reflection question 2
- Did your solution change based on the new information from your client?
- How did your team decide to use the new information?
- Was the information provided enough to change your recommendation?
- Was it difficult to reach a team agreement? Why or why not?
ACCOMMODATIONS & RECOMMENDATIONS
- The teacher should supervise student groups at all times.
- Assist students with special needs accordingly.
- Give breaks if necessary.
- The teacher should guide students whenever they are having difficulty.
Suggested Technology: Computer for Presenter, Computers for Students, Internet Connection, LCD Projector
SOURCE AND ACCESS INFORMATION
Name of Author/Source: Noreyda Romero
District/Organization of Contributor(s): Miami-Dade
Is this Resource freely Available? Yes
Access Privileges: Public
* Please note that examples of resources are not intended as complete curriculum.