Thursday, November 22, 2018

Slow it down; deepen instruction

The next four months will find me slowing down and deepening physical science instruction for our 65 fifth graders. This is our second year with the standards and I have high expectations for what we will do.

Teamwork, Partners
Rather than teams of four or five, the teams will be made up of two or three. I want to establish strong partnerships and threesomes for this leg of the science year. Student partners will work at specific places around the room. We'll begin the partner work by revisiting the note card challenge and learning about lab reports.

Learning the Tools
We'll make time to learn the tools too. Last year I believe I was too hasty with the tools, and this year I want to make more explicit time for students to explore and utilize the many science tools we'll use.

Science Notebooks
Students will have time to add to their science notebooks with care. We'll spend time on model making, labeling, notes, and reflection.

Science Process
We'll practice the processes of gathering materials, taking care of materials, and putting materials away carefully. There are multiple materials for this physical science unit and as much as students can manage the materials well, the better they'll be able to independently engage and reach with the science experiments and explorations.

Knowledge Building
By activity after activity, students will build their science knowledge with depth and interest.

I'm looking forward to this slower, deeper approach to the science curriculum this year. I think it will be more fulfilling and successful for students. Onward.