Grades 3-5: The Water Cycle

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http://kids.mongabay.com/school-lessons/water-cycle-lesson-1/

COMMON CORE STANDARDS

Grade 3

Reading for Information

RI.3.4 Determine the meaning of general academic and domain-specific words and phrases in a text relevant to a grade 3 topic or subject area.

RI.3.5 Use text features and search tools (e.g., key words, sidebars, hyperlinks) to locate information relevant to a given topic efficiently.

RI.3.8 Describe the logical connection between particular sentences and paragraphs in a text (e.g., comparison, cause/effect, first/second/third in a sequence).

Reading Foundational Skills

RF.3.3(c) Decode multisyllable words.

Writing

W.3.2(a) Introduce a topic and group related information together; include illustrations when useful to aiding comprehension.

Speaking & Listening

SL.3.1 Come to discussions prepared, having read or studied required material; explicitly draw on that preparation and other information known about the topic to explore ideas under discussion.

Language

L.3.4(c) Use a known root word as a clue to the meaning of an unknown word with the same root (e.g., company, companion).

Grade 4

Reading for Information

RI.4.4 Determine the meaning of general academic and domain-specific words or phrases in a text relevant to a grade 4 topic or subject area.

RI.4.9 Integrate information from two texts on the same topic in order to write or speak about the subject knowledgeably.

Reading Foundational Skills

RF.4.3(a) Use combined knowledge of all letter-sound correspondences, syllabication patterns, and morphology (e.g., roots and affixes) to read accurately unfamiliar multisyllabic words in context and out of context.

Writing

W.4.2(a) Introduce a topic clearly and group related information in paragraphs and sections; include formatting (e.g., headings), illustrations, and multimedia when useful to aiding comprehension.

Speaking & Listening

SL.4.1 Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 4 topics and texts, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly.

Language

L.4.4(b) Use common, grade-appropriate Greek and Latin affixes and roots as clues to the meaning of a word (e.g., telegraph, photograph, autograph).

Grade 5

Reading for Information

RI.5.4 Determine the meaning of general academic and domain-specific words and phrases in a text relevant to a grade 5 topic or subject area.

RI.5.9 Integrate information from several texts on the same topic in order to write or speak about the subject knowledgeably.

Reading Foundational Skills

RF.5.3(a) Use combined knowledge of all letter-sound correspondences, syllabication patterns, and morphology (e.g., roots and affixes) to read accurately unfamiliar multisyllabic words in context and out of context.

Writing

W.5.2(a) Introduce a topic clearly, provide a general observation and focus, and group related information logically; include formatting (e.g., headings), illustrations, and multimedia when useful to aiding comprehension.

Speaking & Listening

SL.5.1 Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 5 topics and texts, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly.

Language

L.5.4(b) Use common, grade-appropriate Greek and Latin affixes and roots as clues to the meaning of a word (e.g., photograph, photosynthesis).

DESCRIPTION OF LESSON

This Grade 3-5 lesson titled “The Water Cycle” from kids.mongabay.com is a standards-based environmental education lesson. The length of this lesson is open-ended; it includes a choice of activities that depend on the needs and interests of the students.  Lessons emphasize the use of informational text, including graphs and charts. The instructional focus is to build students’ content knowledge through a series of activities which include:  interpreting information, explaining how the information contributes to overall meaning, and demonstrating an understanding of causal relationships.  A culminating activity asks students to answer a series of content-specific questions.

CAUTIONS

Connecticut teachers are cautioned that the targeted standards listed at the beginning of the lesson plan do not include additional standards listed in many of the activities.  While assessment guidelines are included, the use of CCSS-aligned rubrics that elicit direct, observable evidence of the degree to which a student can independently demonstrate the major targeted standards is suggested. Student access to the Internet is necessary to complete this lesson as intended. Mathematics Standards and Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) are included in the lesson materials.

RATIONALE FOR SELECTION

This lesson plan is a good example of how to integrate ELA/Literacy standards with science content.  It cultivates student interest and engagement in reading, writing, and speaking by tapping into students’ prior knowledge and experiences as they:  gather information from multiple sources, co-construct knowledge together, and reach new understandings through collaborative discussions.  It addresses instructional expectations through the development of critical thinking, analytic reasoning skills, and scientific literacy.  The interdisciplinary activities are student-centered and use technology to deepen learning.