Is There Enough Evidence?
The scientific method (or process) is not a simple linear progression. It is good to stop and think along the way! This week we are challenging you to take some time to begin analyzing the evidence. Let us know what your students are thinking about the evidence we have now by using our vote tool.
Thinking and Speaking
This week's comic features quite a few thought bubbles and provides a great opportunity to discuss the concepts of "saying" and "thinking" with students of all ages.
Let's Look for More Critters!
Active learning at every level!
PreK: Learning language of instruction is important for pre-readers. This week's comic has lots of opportunities to work with positional vocabulary like in, out, through, above, and behind. Show students the nine panel version of the comic and ask them to identify the following:
Grades 1 and 2: Not only pre-readers benefit from connecting motion to learning! Bigger kids reap the benefits too. Challenge your students to come up with a motion or gesture to match each sound effect. Project the comic for classroom choral reading or share the comic version in your remote classroom. Then, as the reading progresses, have students add their motions at the appropriate time. Not only does it reinforce comprehension, but it is a great way to focus and recharge young learners!
We are counting on YOU to direct our mission!
What to do with your dinosaur cookie cutters!
Normally, I'm not a fan of "cookie cutter" education. But using cookie cutters in new and novel ways is a whole different situation! Of course you can print and use our dinosaur cookie cutters to create delicious dinosaur cookies (perhaps to celebrate your publication at the end of the mission), but here are some other ways to use these very simple to print files!
Skill building with comics!
Now, before sharing the full comic in print or video form, present three or four cards to sequence. (I suggest starting with the middle row.) Have your readers and pre-readers describe the action in each scene to justify the order they selected. Talking about why they placed each picture as they did is a great way to build language skills! Add in more cards to increase the challenge. Finally, reveal the full comic and check those predictions. Yay!!!
Curious about critters?
While we are here to investigate our hypothesis, there are all sorts of interesting things to investigate. We wish we could look for everything, but we need our research team to make some hard decisions. Which of these three critters should we spend a little extra time trying to find next week while we look for fossils? Discuss and vote!
Building Memory Capacity
This week's tip works for all ages and reading levels! Our comic can be useful for building both long term and working memory. To follow the story over time, students rely on long term memory to recall what happened in last week's installment. Working memory helps students follow the story as they read it. They need to remember the last word they read or the last action that happened while thinking about the next word or action. Try these strategies to build both types of memory!
Looking for more literacy tips? Check out last week's blog post!
Shrinking the vocabulary gap across the socioeconomic spectrum.
It is well documented that children in lower economic status homes typically have a much smaller vocabulary than children from more affluent homes. (Check out links to some of those articles below.) This smaller vocabulary puts them at a significant disadvantage. We want to close the "word gap!" We introduce and practice a wide range of words in our videos, livestreams, and lessons. We support vocabulary acquisition though multiple pathways and strategies based in best practice so that ALL students have a chance to learn and apply new words.
Download word cards and vocabulary lists!
This approach works! I love this story from a teacher. As one of her kindergarten students was walking with his parent to the family car after school, this child stopped in his tracks and picked up a shard of plastic. He held it up and examined it carefully as he verbalized his thinking. "This looks like a broken tail light, but I notice that the color and pattern is different than the tail light on our car. The phenotype doesn't match!" The astonished parent related this tale to the teacher who revealed that phenotype was a Go2Science vocabulary word for the current mission. She went on to provide the definition for the parent.
For more info check out these links:
SES differences in language processing skill and vocabulary are evident at 18 months (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3582035/)
Early Learning and School Readiness: Can Early Intervention Make a Difference?
Tackling the "Vocabulary Gap" Between Rich and Poor Children
Meet Beth and Curtis!
Presidential Award-Winning teacher and hula hoop fanatic, Beth loves bringing real world science to kids! Beth is fascinated by engineering challenges, technology, and outdoor learning spaces. After 25 years teaching kindergarten, she’s excited to share her passion and experience on-line with classrooms from around the world!