November 1, 2010

Living and not-living things: lesson plan

My first post on Science, let’s see if you like it. I will present you my lesson plan about living and not-living things. It’s aimed at the first cycle of Primary Education.

First, using some flash cards (tree, monkey, giraffe, ball, train, caterpillar, daddy, …) I try to elude from students the differences between living things and not-living things, explaining the main characteristics of living ones.

At the beginning of the different lessons I always review the contents seen using some examples, I ask: what’s this? Is it a living thing or a not-living thing? Or is a teacher a living thing or a not-living thing? I try to use vocabulary they can recognize from previous years (toys, animals, school objects…)

In order to differentiate between those two categories, they do some worksheets (colour and circle living things, cut and paste into the appropriate column…). They also learn to name the pictures that appear on them.

They use their notebooks to draw some living and not-living things.

After some lessons, students have to say by themselves names of living and not-living things.

When all the students have a clear concept of living and not-living things they will make a booklet (the template is at the scribd document), they draw pictures and then, with the help of the teacher, they will write the names of the pictures and they will learn the words if they don’t know them.

The next stage deals with learning the main characteristics of living things. To be able to do that, I present the next sentences with the use of mime and gestures:

Living things grow.

Living things need energy.

Living things move.

Living things reproduce.

Living things remove waste.

Living things breathe.

Repetition is an important part in the process of learning the sentences. At the beginning they hear the sentences and they do the actions, and then, when they feel more comfortable, they also say the sentences. They write the sentences on their notebooks.

The same living-thing flashcards I used the first day will be used in order to categorize the three groups in which they can be divided: animals, plants and human beings. We will talk about the main differences among them and they will categorize some given examples and they will give some more.

They will learn the next sentence and they will copy it on their notebooks. They will also draw some examples below each category.

Living things can be animals, plants or human beings.

Finally, I work with the students on the concepts of natural and man-made, analyzing some examples and doing a worksheet.

Some useful worksheets about this unit are:

Living and not-living things

Here you have some presentations that can be adapted or used with older students:

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