Backward Design Fourth Grade Plant Unit

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1 Collin Zier Assessment November 2 nd, 2012 Backward Design Fourth Grade Plant Unit Stage One Desired Results Established Goals: Wisconsin s Model Academic Standards for Science 4 th Grade Standard F Life and Environmental Science THE CHARACTERISTICS OF ORGANISMS F.4.1 Discover* how each organism meets its basic needs for water, nutrients, protection, and energy* in order to survive F.4.2 Investigate* how organisms, especially plants, respond to both internal cues (the need for water) and external cues (changes in the environment) LIFE CYCLES OF ORGANISMS F.4.3 Illustrate* the different ways that organisms grow through life stages and survive to produce new members of their type ORGANISMS AND THEIR ENVIRONMENT F.4.4 Using the science themes*, develop explanations* for the connections among living and non-living things in various environments 1. How do seeds grow? 3. What are the parts of a flower? 4. How do plants reproduce? 5. What is photosynthesis? 6. How do people benefit from photosynthesis? These Essential Questions were chosen to guide a general study of plants: parts, reproduction, and photosynthesis. These questions will give the students general concepts about plants though students will be encouraged to learn anything extra they may want to learn regarding this unit. Students will be expected to be able to answer these questions at the conclusion of the unit. Understandings: Students will understand that 1. Seeds may look dead but are in fact only dormant. A seed grows into a plant by taking in water. The seeds swell until the plant bursts from its shell. 2. Plants are made up of parts: Leaves Stem Roots 3. Flowers are made up of parts: Pistil Petals Pollen Stamen 4. Photosynthesis is the process in which plants change water, light, and carbon dioxide into glucose and oxygen. 5. Plants produce oxygen which is then breathed by humans who in turn produce carbon dioxide. Page 1

2 These understandings are the main points during this plant unit. Students will need to have a grasp on these understandings in order to be able to answer the essential questions. Knowledge: Students will know 1. Key Terms: Dormant, Germination, Pollination, Photosynthesis, Reproduce, Spore 2. Important parts of a plant and what the parts do: Leaves gather light for the plant. The stem carries water, minerals, and food between roots and leaves as well as supports the plant. Roots hold the plant into the ground where they take in water and minerals. o Types of roots: Fibrous roots: Spread out in many directions but do not grow deep Taproot: Large main root grows straight down where the plant stores food 3. Important parts of a flower and what the parts do: The pistil is the part of a flower that makes the eggs that will grow into seeds. Petals are colorful parts of a flower which attract bees, birds, and other living things. Pollen is the tiny grains that make seeds when combined with a flower s eggs. The stamen is the part of a flower that makes pollen. 4. How a plant reproduces making new seeds. 5. The difference between fibrous roots and taproots and be able to give examples of each. 6. Plants are a key part of our environment and produce oxygen which humans breathe. These key ideas will need to be known by the students in order to grasp the essential questions. This knowledge will give the students a basis of learning about plants in order to help better their understanding of the relationship between people and the environment. Upon acquiring this knowledge students will have mastered the fourth grade standard. Skills: Students will be able to 1. Take care of a bean sprout by watering it daily. 2. Measure the growth of the bean sprout. 3. Explain the process of photosynthesis and the importance of such a process to both the plant and people. 4. Explain how a plant reproduces. 5. Create a poster about a plant science topic and present their poster information to the class. Stage Two Evidence of Learning Diagnostic Assessment: Plant Science Packet Overview: As this is a whole unit and not a single lesson, the students will be given a packet with a few different activities to determine the basic knowledge of the class. Activities in packet would be as follows: 1. Life Cycle of a Bean Plant Chronological Order: This sheet will have pictures from different periods of a bean plant s life cycle. The pictures will be out of order, and the students will be asked to glue the pictures in order on the following page. Page 2

3 2. Parts of a Plant and Flower: This sheet will have a diagram of a plant and flower on it with blanks to fill in regarding different parts on these diagrams. 3. Photosynthesis KWL Chart: This sheet will have a chart where the students will be able to write what they know about the word photosynthesis and the process it involves. The students will also be asked to write what they want to know about this topic as well. Later in the unit, the students will review what they have learned about photosynthesis by writing it in the final box of the chart. Use: I will use this diagnostic assessment to find out what my students know about plant science. This packet may also involve more activities and would be used as a guide through the topic as well as a review tool at the end of the unit. This assessment would then also become part of the formative assessment for this unit. Goals: Students will explore the concepts of plant science. 1. What is photosynthesis? 3. What are the parts of a flower? Cognitive Level: This will be a remember activity that will consider factual knowledge. Other parts in this packet may include understand activities such as explaining how photosynthesis is a beneficial process to humans. Formative Assessments: Plant Science Packet Overview: As I have already gone into this in detail, I will not add any more to this other than that it has many applications to become a good formative assessment during the entirety of the plant science unit. Growing a Bean Sprout Overview: Students will be given the task of growing a bean sprout through the unit. This activity would start a week or two before the beginning of the unit to make it so that actual growth may be shown during the unit. Students will have to measure the amount of soil that is put into their cup as well as pour a measured amount of water onto the plant daily in order to keep their sprout alive. Students will then be asked to record the growth of their plant throughout the next six to eight weeks in order to observe the life cycle of a plant (this will continue for longer than the unit). Use: This assessment will be used as an overarching idea showing the concepts of the plant science unit. Plants will be used as a tool to explain the understandings and knowledge during the unit. Students will also be asked to review what they have learned to their plant every day for the last couple minutes of the lesson. This is to reinforce the concept of photosynthesis (the students giving the plant carbon dioxide) as well as gives the students a good time to think about what they learned. I will not score this assessment; it will only be used to better the instruction of the unit. Goals: 1. Students will acquire knowledge of the life cycle of a plant. 2. Students will gain a better understanding of photosynthesis and its effect on people. 1. How do people benefit from photosynthesis? 3. How do seeds grow? Page 3

4 Understandings: 1. Seeds may look dead but are in fact only dormant. A seed grows into a plant by taking in water. The seeds swell until the plant bursts from its shell. 2. Plants are made up of parts: Leaves Stem Roots 3. Photosynthesis is the process in which plants change water, light, and carbon dioxide into glucose and oxygen. 4. Plants produce oxygen which is then breathed by humans who in turn produce carbon dioxide. Knowledge: 1. Important parts of a plant and what the parts do: 2. Plants are a key part of our environment and produce oxygen which humans breathe. Skills: 1. Take care of a bean sprout by watering it daily. 2. Measure the growth of the bean sprout. 3. Explain the process of photosynthesis and the importance of such a process to both the plant and people. Cognitive Level: This activity involves many different levels of cognitive performance. The actual growing of the plant involves applying procedural knowledge about how the plant develops. Measuring growth of the plant will be a way to apply conceptual knowledge. Reviewing to the plant is a way to remember factual knowledge. Summative Assessments: Plant Science Poster Overview: Students will collaborate with their classmates to create a poster overviewing concepts they have learned during the plant science unit. Students will be asked to be as creative as possible when making their posters. Based on the cognitive levels of the students, topics may have to be assigned to each group to facilitate their creation. Students will be asked to give a short presentation about their poster to the class to explain what they added to their Use: This assessment will be used to determine the students final understanding of the plant science unit. Students will have to use the subject matter learned in the unit to create an interesting and engaging poster showing something observed or learned about plants. Goals: 1. Students will show what they have learned in an engaging and informative 2. Students will give a short presentation telling the class about what is in their This project covers all before mentioned Essential Questions, Understandings, Knowledge, and Skills. Cognitive Level: This assessment will focus on creating using factual or procedural knowledge. Even though this is a higher function on the scale, I believe that fourth grades will be able to use their learned knowledge to create interesting posters showing their understanding of the subject matter. Quality Control: Overview: My summative assessment is able to be validated and made reliable by having the following checklist and rubric to give the students an idea of what I will be considering in their poster and presentations. I also will make an example of a poster project (this would be on a different subject) so that the students will be able to see a model of what a good project looks like. Page 4

5 Checklist for Plant Science Poster Does my poster have a title? Does my poster contain pictures that portray the content well? Do I have at least five of these pictures on my poster? Do my pictures have information near them to help explain the content? Is the content on my poster organized so that it is easy to understand? Are there any grammar mistakes on my poster? Is there anything extra I could add to improve the quality of the poster? Am I prepared to give a short presentation about the content of my poster? Rubric for Plant Science Poster CATEGORY Pictures All pictures are related to the are more than five pictures. All pictures are related to the are five pictures. All pictures relate to the are four pictures. Pictures do not relate to the topic or there are three or less pictures. Content answer all questions about facts in the answer most questions about facts in the answer about 75% of questions about facts in the answer less than 75% of questions about the facts in the Grammar There are no There is one mistake on the There are two There are three or more Required Elements The poster includes all required elements as well as additional information. All required elements are included on the Most of the required elements are included on the Several required elements were missing. Page 5

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