Model Curriculum Framework - Sabine Parish School Board

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Comprehensive
Curriculum












Prekindergarten
Science









Cecil J. Picard

State Superintendent of Education

©
April 2005





Prekindergarten

Science

Table of Contents



Unit 1: Grouping and Sorting Objects

................................
................................
......................
1

Unit 2: Observing and Describing Ob
jects

................................
................................
...............
6

Unit 3: Mixtures

................................
................................
................................
......................
13

Unit 4: Position and Motion

................................
................................
................................
....
19

Unit 5: Plants and Animals

................................
................................
................................
.....
23

Unit 6: Changes in the Weather

................................
................................
..............................
29


Prekindergarten Science

Unit 1

Grouping and Sorting Objects

1

Prekindergarten

Science

Unit 1: Grouping and Sorting Objects



Time Frame:
The content of this unit should be taught throughout

the year with activities
integrated across all developmental domains (ELA, Math, Science, Social Studies and
physical, social
-
emotional, and creative development)



Unit Description


The unit is designed to introduce colors, shapes, sizes, and hot and col
d to students for
comparison. These concepts are not intended to be taught in isolation and should be
integrated across the curriculum as meaningful to the students.



Student Understandings


Using a variety of objects and materials, students observe and d
escribe them in terms of
shapes, colors, sizes and temperature.



Guiding Questions


1.

Can students recognize and name basic colors?

2.

Can students recognize and name basic shapes?

3.

Can students differentiate among sizes? (big, little, medium)

4.

Can students com
pare items and describe them? (three of the same kind)

5.

Can students distinguish between and tell about hot and cold?



Unit 1 Grade
-
Level Expectations (GLEs)


GLE #

GLE Text and Benchmarks

Science as Inquiry

3.

Use the five senses to describe observatio
ns (SI
-
E
-
A3) (PK
-
CS
-
P3)

Physical Science

9.

Sort objects using one characteristic (PK
-
CS
-
P2) (PS
-
E
-
A1)

18.

Identify selected substances as
hot

or
cold

(PK
-
CS
-
P2) (PS
-
E
-
C3)



Prekindergarten Science

Unit 1

Grouping and Sorting Objects

2

Sample Activities



Activity 1: Sorting by Color (GLEs: 3, 9)


At group tim
e, students are introduced to 3 or 4 basic color

objects (red, yellow, blue, green).
Students look at the each object naming and discussing each one’s color. After simple
instructions about how to sort, the students participate in sorting color objects int
o groups.
The teacher emphasizes that objects that are the same color go together. Objects that are not
the same color go into different groups. Upon completion of this sorting activity, students
may sort by color in small groups, pairs, or independently a
t center time. The large group
time sorting activity should be repeated with additional colors (orange, purple, brown, black)
until students are able to identify successfully and sort the eight basic colors. Students may
work on the computer using appropri
ate software for sorting and labeling color objects.


Activity 2: Sorting by Shape (GLEs: 3, 9)


At group time, students are introduced to 3 basic shape objects (circle, square, triangle).
Students participate in looking at, holding and orally describing

the physical characteristics
of each shape. Students listen to simple instructions about how to sort. The teacher
emphasizes that objects that are the same go together. Objects that are not like them, go into
a different group. Students actively participa
te in sorting the shape objects into groups. Upon
completion of this sorting activity, students may work in small groups, pairs, or
independently at center time to sort shapes. The large group time sorting activity should be
repeated with additional shapes

(rectangle, oval, star, heart) until students are able to identify
successfully and sort simple basic shapes. Computer work with software that allows student
practice of this concept is recommended.



Activity 3: Sorting by Size (GLEs: 3, 9)


At group ti
me, students listen to a story or non
-
fiction book about the concepts of big and
little. The teacher uses real objects (stuffed animals, dolls, balls, pencils, toys) having one
large and one small of each pair. Students look at each pair of objects and say

which one is
big

and which one is
little
. After simple instructions about how to sort, the students actively
participate in sorting the objects into groups as either big or little. The teacher emphasizes
that objects that are the same size go together. Ob
jects that are not like them, go into a
different group. Upon completion of this sorting activity, students may sort objects by size in
small groups, pairs, or independently at center time. The large group time sorting activity
should be repeated with addi
tional sizes later in the year. (big, medium and little) until
students are able to identify successfully and sort basic sizes. Children’s literature may be
used to enhance this concept. The classic story,
Goldilocks and the Three Bears

can highlight
this
concept. This activity can be repeated using different sizes of rocks, sticks, animal bones
or leaves (from nature).


Prekindergarten Science

Unit 1

Grouping and Sorting Objects

3

Activity 4: Hot and Cold (GLEs: 3, 18)


At group time, students are introduced to the concept of hot and cold. The teacher uses real
ob
jects having some cold and some hot (ice cube, popsicle, warm bottle of water, warm
toast). Given a set of objects, students will determine the difference between hot and cold.
Begin with concrete objects to touch (e.g., ice cube and hot water bottle) and
taste (e.g.,
cocoa and ice cream). Talk about what other things can be hot and cold (stove, sun, bath
water, ice pop, cold pack).



After discussion about temperature, students actively participate in sorting plastic models or
pictures into groups as eith
er hot or cold. Upon completion of this sorting activity, students
may work in small groups, pairs, or independently at center time to sort models or pictures
into hot or cold sets. This group time activity should be repeated with additional temperatures
(
warm and cool) later in the year.



Some students may be able to identify successfully and sort all four basic temperatures.
Children’s literature may be used to enhance this concept and lead to student discussion of
things that are hot and/or cold.



Samp
le Assessments



General Guidelines



Documentation of student understanding will be recorded by the teacher through observation,
notes and anecdotal records as well as student
-
generated products. These items will be dated
and kept in the form of portfolio

assessment.



General Assessments




Photos of student activities sorting by shape, color, size



Videotapes showing students determining difference between hot and cold



Checklists for recording student behaviors and skills



Teacher observations and notes



Anec
dotal records



Activity
-
Specific Assessments




Activity 1
:

After allowing students to explore and discover various colored
objects (cubes, puff balls, tiles), set up an assessment activity using only 3 colors
at a time. Have students pick up one object at
a time and place it in a plastic bowl
or plate labeled with the same color. The teacher may also want to add the written
word “red”, “blue”, “yellow” on each of the 3 plates. The student(s) select an
Prekindergarten Science

Unit 1

Grouping and Sorting Objects

4

object and place it in the bowl or plate labeled with th
at same color. Give
assistance as required by individual students but note this in your checklist.
Continue the process until all objects have been selected and placed in the proper
colored plate. Use the following checklist to
assess student knowledge
: (R
ecord
student’s name, the date and his/her responses. Add this to the portfolio for
evidence of learning.)



Does the student accurately sort the colored objects into the correct
“plate”? You may want to give the number correct out of the possible.
(e.g., 12

possible shapes, 7 correct)



Can the student name each color correctly?





Activity 2
: After allowing students to explore and discover objects in a variety of
sizes, set up an assessment activity. Label a small plastic tray with the word
“little”. Label a l
arge plastic tray with the word, “BIG”. Have students select an
object, identify it as big or little and place it on the proper tray. Give assistance as
required by individual students and note errors in your records. Continue the
process until all objects

have been selected and sorted onto the correct tray. Later,
you may add “medium” to this assessment when students are ready. Students may
later sort as little and big using pictures of objects, like a bus, cookie, tree or
necklace. Keep records of abiliti
es and inaccuracies.





Activity 3
: After allowing students to explore and discover various shapes, set up
an assessment activity using only 3 shapes at a time. Students pick up one shape
at a time and place it in a large plastic bowl or plate labeled with
the same shape.
The label on each plate may be a real object (taped on) or a drawing of the shape.
The teacher may also want to add the written word “circle”, “square”, “triangle”
under each of the 3 shapes. Student(s) select a shape and place it in the b
owl or
plate labeled with that same shape. Matching the shapes, the student should say
the name of each shape as it is selected. Teacher assistance may be needed to help
students learn, remember or say the shape’s name. Give assistance as required by
indiv
idual students. Continue the process until all shapes have been selected and
sorted in subsequent stacks. Use the following checklist to
assess student
knowledge
: (Record student’s name, the date and his/her responses. Add this to
the portfolio for evidenc
e of learning.)



Does the student accurately sort the shapes into the correct “plate”? You
may want to give the number correct out of the possible. (e.g., 12 possible
shapes, 7 correct)



Can the student name each shape correctly?



Can the student describe how

each shape looks? (curves, round, lines,
straight)



Can the student tell how 2 shapes are different?



Can the student tell what sorting means?



Prekindergarten Science

Unit 1

Grouping and Sorting Objects

5

Resources



Children’s Books




A Color of His Own

by Leo Lionni



Brown Bear, Brown Bear

by Bill Martin Jr.



Circle
s, Triangles, and Squares

by Tana Hoban



Color Zoo

by Lois Ehlert



Freight Train

by Donald Crews



Mouse Paint

by Ellen Stoll Walsh



Red Bear

by Bodel Rikys



The Shape of Things

by Dayle Ann Dodds



Who Said Red?

by Mary Serfozo


Teacher Resources




Websites

www.thesolutionsite.com

(grade level K)



A Kaleidoscope of Colors



Geometry for All



Shape Up With Geometry



Shapes

www.kinderkorner.com




52 Science Centers

by Nancy Whi
te



Integrated Learning Activities for Young Children

by Susan L. Trostle



Learning Center Activities Science

from Teacher Created Materials



Science With Young Children

by Bess
-
Gene Holt (NAEYC)



Totline Theme
-
A
-
Saurus II

by Jean Warren



The Science Book of Ho
t and Cold
by Neil Ardley, 1992



Prekindergarten Science

Unit 2

Observing and Describing Objects

6

Prekindergarten

Science

Unit 2: Observing and Describing Objects



Time Frame:
The content of this unit should be taught throughout the year with activities
integrated across all developmental domains (ELA, Math, Science,

Social Studies) and
physical, social
-
emotional and creative development.


Unit Description


The unit is designed to introduce students to the scientific concepts of sink/float, magnetism,
weight, solids and liquids. This unit is not intended to be taught
in isolation and should be
integrated across subject areas as meaningful to students.



Student Understandings


By performing some action on various familiar objects, students will develop an
understanding of characteristics of objects. These characteristi
cs include: the ability to sink
or float, attraction to magnets, and shape taken when placed into a container. Students will
learn to use a simple equal
-
arm balance to measure weight of objects.



Guiding Questions


1.

Can students guess which objects will si
nk and which will float?

2.

Can students explain how objects that are attracted to a magnet are the same and
how they are different from objects that are not attracted to a magnet?

3.

Can students find out which of two items weighs more?

4.

Can students use an equa
l
-
arm balance?

5.

Can students distinguish between solids and liquids?



Unit 2 Grade
-
Level Expectations (GLEs)


GLE #

GLE Text and Benchmarks

Science as Inquiry

1.

Ask questions about objects and events in the environment (SI
-
E
-
A1) (PK
-
CS
-
I1)

2.

Pose que
stions that can be answered by using students’ own observations and
scientific knowledge (SI
-
E
-
A1) (PK
-
CS
-
I1)

3.

Use the five senses to describe observations (SI
-
E
-
A3) (PK
-
CS
-
P3)

4.

Select and use developmentally appropriate equipment and tools and un
its of
measurement to observe and collect data (PK
-
CS
-
I4) (SI
-
E
-
A4)


Prekindergarten Science

Unit 2

Observing and Describing Objects

7


GLE #

GLE Text and Benchmarks

5.

Express data in a variety of ways by constructing illustrations, graphs, charts,

tables, concept maps, and oral and written explanations as appropriat
e (PK
-
CS
-
I5)

(SI
-
E
-
A5) (SI
-
E
-
B4)

7.

Identify and use appropriate safety procedures and equipment when conducting
investigations (e.g. gloves, goggles, hair ties) (PK
-
CS
-
I4) (SI
-
E
-
B3)

Physical Science

10.

Determine whether objects float or sink through
investigations (PK
-
CS
-
P1) (PS
-
E
-
A1)

11.

Describe properties of materials by using observations made with the aid of
equipment such as magnets, magnifying glasses, pan balances, and mirrors (PK
-
CS
-
P4) (PS
-
E
-
A2)

12.

Determine whether one object weighs more

or less than another by using a pan
balance (PK
-
CS
-
I4) (PS
-
E
-
A2)

13.

Compare the properties of different solids and liquids through observation (PK
-
CS
-
P1) (PS
-
E
-
A4)



Sample Activities



Activity 1: Sink or Float (GLEs: 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 10)


Safety note:

Water safety is introduced here with the teacher telling students that this water
is NOT for drinking. Students participate in discussing why the water is for “science” and
will have lots of hands and objects in and out of the tub. Students learn or recal
l that dirt and
germs make the water unsuitable for drinking. Students will also discuss the importance of
keeping the water in the tub so it does not spill to the floor creating a slipping hazard.


In large group time, introduce concepts by showing vario
us objects to be tested. Upon
teacher questioning, students will describe the characteristics of objects and predict which
objects they think might sink or float. Teacher records a “list” of students’ responses on a
large chart tablet with illustrations. I
n small groups and/or center time, set up tubs of water,
common objects (including those shown and predicted by the students earlier), and report
sheets. Students may consult the sink/float list made earlier OR predict on their own if the
object would sink

or float. A record sheet with columns should be available for each student.
The columns are labeled with words and pictures to identify one side as “SINK” (with
picture clue) and one side as “FLOAT” with picture clue.


Upon predicting, the student may c
heck the appropriate column. Each student should test
his/her prediction by placing the object carefully in the water. Upon observing if the object in
question sank or floated, the student draws the object in the correct column. The teacher
should questio
n students as to why they think certain things floated and others did not. After
all students have had the opportunity to do this activity, the teacher leads a class discussion
that summarizes what the students have learned about sinking and floating. Stud
ents

Prekindergarten Science

Unit 2

Observing and Describing Objects

8

participate in listing similar characteristics among the floating objects and differences in
characteristics from the objects that sank.


A water table should be readily available for use by students throughout the school year.
Whether inside or out

of doors, water play with a variety of objects (funnels, sponges, hoses,
containers, and small boats) will increase student knowledge of the properties of water and
how objects respond to them.



Activity 2: Magnets (GLEs: 1, 3, 5, 7, 11)


Safety note: S
tudents should be introduced to magnets as science tools that are to be handled
gently and properly. NO student may place any magnets or objects near his/her mouth or
face. Students participate in a discussion about safe use of magnets and why they should
be
used properly.



After safety discussion, students are given the opportunity to explore and manipulate
magnets and various objects. Through active investigation, students determine which objects
are attracted to a magnet and which are not. Students disc
over how some objects will “stick
to” or be attracted to the magnet and others will not.


This beginning knowledge opens a large group discussion of magnetism. Students participate
in large group discussion about magnets. Students question the work and fo
rce of magnets as
well as which objects are attracted by magnets. Through questions and discussion, students
learn basic
vocabulary
(stick to = attracted to; move away = repelled) and
concepts
(magnets
have a force that will pull objects to it or push them

away again). The teacher encourages
students to list their observations and tell about concepts they have learned. Recording
student findings on a chart, the teacher may have students draw pictures for easier recall.


Students participate in reading the
magnet “chart” before returning to small group or center
activities for further exploration using magnets and various objects. Students participate in
further group discussion about which objects are attracted to magnets and which objects are
not. Teacher
assists students in summarizing what similar characteristics exist among the
objects that are attracted to magnets and what similar characteristics exist among the objects
that are not. A large chart or visual organizer may be used to help students see the

results.


Magnets and related objects should be readily available throughout the school year allowing
students to further explore and discover characteristics of magnets and magnetic objects. The
science center is an excellent place for storage and the m
agnet set can be easily pulled out for
use with teacher supervision.



Activity 3: Weight (GLEs: 4, 11, 12)



The students will participate in modeling an equal arm balance. At large group time, have a
few students stand up and stretch their arms to the s
ide as the teacher places one object in

Prekindergarten Science

Unit 2

Observing and Describing Objects

9

each of their hands. Placing a cotton ball or other light object in one hand and a (heavier)
wooden block in the other, the teacher invites students to pretend to be an equal arm balance.
As the few students stand mo
mentarily, the others observe and ask questions about the heavy
and light objects. Students should stand with their arms spread, holding the objects just long
enough for the hand holding the heavier block to begin moving down.



Other students are given t
urns to participate until everyone has had the experience of feeling
light and heavy objects with their arms and hands (this may be done over several different
group times). Teacher guided discussion will prompt students to think about an equal
-
arm
pan bal
ance and the concept of weight. Upon seeing how the scale works and learning safe
procedures, students work in small groups and/or center activities to explore an equal
-
arm
pan balance. The students will participate in a discussion that summarizes their fi
ndings.



Guided practice will allow students to use similar sized objects that differ in weight. Then,
given a set of two objects, the students will determine which weighs more (or less) using an
equal
-
arm pan balance. Students may later choose two objec
ts from a variety that are set out
for exploration. Students predict which one they think will be lighter or heavier. Upon using
the balance, they draw conclusions telling about their findings. Teacher led discussion should
include how objects of equal siz
e and shape may differ in weight. An equal arm pan balance
should be readily available throughout the school year for students to explore and discover
weights of different objects. The science center is an excellent place for storage and the scale
can be
easily pulled out for use with teacher supervision.



Activity 4: Solid/Liquid (GLEs: 1, 2, 3, 13)


At large group time, students will participate in a demonstration and discussion of solids and
liquids. The teacher will share various shaped (non
-
breakab
le) containers. Students will
look at a few chosen solid objects and a few liquids in bottles. The teacher will question the
students about what they think will happen when solids and liquids are place into the
containers. Students will predict and give t
heir reasons.


Students are invited to explore and discover what will happen. At center time, the students
will experiment and observe the properties of a liquid (water, milk, juice) by pouring it into
different shaped containers. Students will discuss, w
ith teacher support, that liquids take on
the shape of the container. By observing solids (cube, ball, small toy) students will discover
that solids keep their shape regardless of their position or placement in a container.


Later, students may experimen
t with changing a solid to a liquid (e.g., ice melting) and liquid
to a solid (e.g., making freezer pops) and changing the shape of a solid (e.g., breaking a
graham cracker, sidewalk chalk, play dough).




Prekindergarten Science

Unit 2

Observing and Describing Objects

10

Sample Assessments


General Guidelines


Documenta
tion of student understanding will be recorded by the teacher through observation,
notes and anecdotal records as well as student
-
generated products. These items will be dated
and kept in the form of portfolio assessment.



General Assessments




Data collec
tion charts showing students’ predictions in sink or float activity
compared to their observations



Photos, audio tapes or videotapes to record student behaviors in magnet, weight,
and solid/liquid activities



Student products such as drawings, date collecti
on charts, statements



Checklists for recording student behaviors, understanding, and skills



Teacher observations



Anecdotal records



Activity
-
Specific Assessments




Activity 1
:
Students will test familiar objects by carefully placing them one at a
time into

a tub of water. Students will observe whether the object sinks or floats.
Using a tub labeled “sink” and a tub labeled “float”, the student will sort the
objects into the proper container. The students will look for similar characteristics
of objects with
in each pile. The students will explain their choices and tell why
they think something sank or floated. Using a checklist, ask students the following
questions. Date and record (audio tape, videotape, or write) their answers to file in
the portfolio.



Wha
t does it mean to “float”?



What does it mean to “sink”?



Tell me about the objects that sank. How are they the same?



Tell me about the objects that floated. How are they the same?



What other things do you know that can sink or float? (Look for answers
relat
ed to the student’s life experience. EG: Dogs and people float when
they swim. Cars sink if they fall in the river. Wood floats in the pond.
Rocks skip then sink in the water.)




Activity 2
:
Students will test familiar objects by carefully placing them one
at a
time near or onto a magnet stick. Students will observe whether the object sticks
(is attracted) or not. Provide a tray labeled “stick” with picture clue and a tray
labeled “won’t stick” with picture clue. The students will sort the objects onto the
p
roper tray. The students will look for similar characteristics of objects on each
tray separately. The students will explain their choices and tell why they think

Prekindergarten Science

Unit 2

Observing and Describing Objects

11

something ‘stuck’ or ‘didn’t stick’. Using a checklist, ask students the following
questions.

Date and record (audio tape, videotape, or write) their answers to file in
the portfolio.



What is a magnet? (a thing that pulls some objects)



Why do some things stick to the magnet? (How are they the same?)



Why do some things not stick to the magnet? How

are they the same?



What else do you know about magnets? (Look for answers related to the
student’s life experience. EG: Magnets can push other magnets away. A
compass uses a magnet to find the North Pole. Magnets can clean up nails
and metal shavings. Mag
nets can hold things on the refrigerator.)



Listen for evidence of understanding. Does the student use basic
vocabulary (stick, touch and pull) or advanced vocabulary (e.g. Attract,
repel)?




Activity 3
:
Students will test objects by carefully placing them o
ne at a time onto
the scale. Students will observe whether the object moves the pan down or is
moved up in its pan. Using a tub labeled “heavy” and a tub labeled “light”, the
students will sort the objects into the proper container. The students will loo
k for
similar characteristics of objects within each pile. The students will explain their
choices and tell why they think something was heavy or light. Using a checklist,
ask students the following questions. Date and record (audio tape, videotape, or
wri
te) their answers to file in the portfolio.



Tell me how the scale works?



How do you know that an object weighs more?



How do you know that an object weighs less?



What will the scale do if objects on each side weigh the same?



What other things could you wei
gh? Which do you think will weigh more?



Do you know about any other scales? (Look for answers related to the
student’s life experience. EG: I weigh myself at the doctor’s. My dad has a
scale so he is on a diet. Maw Maw weighs the bananas at the store.)



Loo
k for evidence of advanced understanding and vocabulary such as
heavy, light, units of weight: pounds, ounces and note this for individual
students.




Prekindergarten Science

Unit 2

Observing and Describing Objects

12

Resources


Children’s Books




Who Sank the Boat?

by Pamela Allen


Teacher Resources




www.brainpop.com




All about Magnets

by Stephen Krensky (Scholastic)



52 Science Centers

by Nancy White



Fun with Water & Bubbles

(Little Scientists) from McGraw
-
Hill



Integrated Learning Activities for Young Children

by Susan L. Trostle



Kindergarten Teacher’s Survival Guide

by Elizabeth Crosby Still



Learning Center Activities Science

from Teacher Created Materials



Science With Young Children

by Bess
-
Gene Holt (NAEYC)



Teaching Children about Physical Science

by Elaine Levenson





Prekindergarten Science

Unit 3

Mixtures

13

Prekinde
rgarten

Science

Unit 3: Mixtures



Time Frame:

The content of this unit should be taught throughout the year with activities
integrated across all developmental domains (ELA, Math, Science, Social Studies and
physical, social
-
emotional and creative develo
pment).



Unit Description


The unit is designed to introduce students to the concept of both liquid and solid mixtures.
Students will learn proper use of hand lenses as tools for seeing small objects close up. This
unit is not intended to be taught in is
olation and should be implemented across the
curriculum as meaningful to students.



Student Understandings


Through hands
-
on exploration and observation, students will begin to describe characteristics
of common materials. Students will work with substanc
es like sugar or water when they are
alone. Students will mix materials while observing, exploring, and describing the process and
product of a mixture. Students will use a magnifying glass as a tool to see small particles
alone and in a mixture.



Guiding

Questions


1.

Can students define mixture? (materials mixed together)

2.

Can students explain how mixtures are made? (putting together and mixing)

3.

Can students explain how a mixture can be taken apart? (sifting, filtering)

4.

Can students determine that cinn
amon sugar is a mixture and plain white sugar is not?

5.

Can students orally describe the function and proper use of a magnifying glass?

6.

Can students describe soil as a mixture and list some of its components (rocks, dead
leaves, sticks)?



Unit 3 Grade
-
Lev
el Expectations (GLEs)


GLE #

GLE Text and Benchmarks

Science as Inquiry

3.

Use the five senses to describe observations (SI
-
E
-
A3) (PK
-
CS
-
P3)



4.

Select and use appropriate equipment and units of measure to observe and
collect data. (PS
-
CS
-
14)



Prekindergarten Science

Unit 3

Mixtures

14

GLE #

GLE Text and Benchmarks

5.

Exp
ress data in a variety of ways by constructing illustrations, graphs, charts,
tables, concept maps, and oral and written explanations as appropriate (PK
-
CS
-
I5) (SI
-
E
-
A5) (SI
-
E
-
B4)


7.

Identify and use appropriate safety procedures and equipment when
condu
cting investigation (PK
-
CS
-
I4) (SI
-
E
-
B3)


8.

Recognize that a variety of tools can be used to examine objects at different
degrees of magnification (e.g., hand lens, microscope) (PK
-
CS
-
I4) (SI
-
E
-
B3)

Physical Science

9.

Sort objects using one characteris
tic (PK
-
CS
-
P2) (PS
-
E
-
A1)

11.

Describe properties of materials by using observations made with the aid of
equipment such as magnets, magnifying glasses, pan balances, and mirrors

(PK
-
CS
-
14) (PS
-
E
-
A2)

14.

Identify components of simple mixtures (e.g., salt
/water, rice/beans, iron
filings/sand) (PK
-
CS
-
P1) (PS
-
E
-
A5)

Earth and Space Science

25.

Explore and describe various properties of rocks, minerals, and soils (PK
-
CS
-
L2) (ESS
-
E
-
A1)



Sample Activities



Activity 1: Dry Mixtures (GLEs: 3, 4, 8, 11, 14)


Students will discover that combining two or more materials makes a mixture. Upon
explaining
safe

and proper use of tools and materials, the teacher places a mixture of rice and
beans in a sand table along with large bowl strainers, colanders, sifters, lar
ge funnels, cups
and spoons. Students explore the mixture using the tools provided. Hand lenses should be
available to look closely at the mixtures. Students, should not, however, mix and stir the
materials with the magnifying glasses. These should be set

aside for visual examination only.
As students actively explore and separate materials, they talk about their activities. Teacher
should prompt discussion and encourage the students to separate the mixture. Students work
with and discuss the rice and bean

mixture. Using guided questions, the teacher assists
students in understanding that each component of the mixture is an individual substance.
Students orally describe how putting things together is called a mixture. The teacher should
emphasize that some

materials like rice and beans can still be identified as separate parts
even though mixed together.



Activity 2: Liquid Mixtures (GLEs: 3, 5, 7, 14)


Safety note:
The teacher should caution the students that in science class they should not
taste any su
bstance without first asking an adult
.



Prekindergarten Science

Unit 3

Mixtures

15

In small groups, each student will be provided a small clear plastic cup and spoon (clean and
unused). The teacher will pour clean (drinking) water into each cup. For this activity, the
teacher has the student take
a small drink, tasting the water. Using their senses, students
orally describe the water by taste, smell, sound and sight. The teacher may record key
vocabulary words they use onto a chart for sharing later in whole
-
class discussion. Next, the
teacher put
s sugar onto each spoon.


The teacher instructs the students look at, touch, taste, smell, pinch and grind granules near
their ears to hear the sound it makes. Students orally describe their observations of the sugar
as the teacher writes their responses u
se simple, key vocabulary. (white granules, hard tiny
chunks, solid, etc.) Students then pour the sugar granules into the water and begin stirring
until the entire white solid disappears.



Again using their senses, students describe the look, feel, taste
, smell and sound (swishing in
a cup) as observations of the mixture. The teacher encourages vocabulary about the physical
properties of the mixture and records simple key vocabulary to report later during whole
-
class discussion. The teacher insures that
each student understands that the sugar (solid) and
water (liquid) make a mixture (because the sugar dissolves), and even though the sugar
cannot be seen it is still there because of the characteristic sweet taste of the mixture. This
activity can be repea
ted with similar solids (salt, flour, brown sugar) and water allowing
students to see various outcomes.



Activity 3: Soil (GLEs: 3, 7, 8, 11, 25)


Safety note: Make sure that soil/sand sources are not contaminated with animal feces or any
chemicals. Stu
dents should wear small plastic gloves for this activity.


Students will explore a variety of soil mixtures taken from different sources near or around
the school. In a shallow trays, place playground soil (in one), potting soil (in a second), and
play san
d (in a third) for exploring. Have students put on plastic gloves and goggles (eye
protectors) to examine these mixtures. Students may use scoops, funnels, sifters, and a
variety of containers to investigate in a discovery area. Magnifying glasses are need
ed for
students to examine closely the contents of each mixture. As they observe, students may
draw and record their findings. Additionally, these mixtures may be placed one at a time in
the sand table throughout the year for exploration. The teacher asks
guiding questions and
elicits student descriptions and vocabulary. Student discovery should focus on soil as a
mixture composed of rock particles and the remains of plants and animals.




Prekindergarten Science

Unit 3

Mixtures

16

Activity 4: Rocks (GLEs: 3, 5, 9, 11, 25)


Safety Note
:
Be sure
that students know how to explore rocks and hard objects by keeping
them near the trays and close to them. Emphasize safety so that students avoid throwing,
dropping and banging rocks hard against other surfaces.


In the science or discovery center, stude
nts will examine assorted rocks, stones, crystals, or
petrified wood. Using touch, sight, sound and hearing, they will investigate the collection and
orally describe physical features, similarities and differences. The teacher will encourage
them to draw s
ome of the rocks as(s) he labels the drawing or writes a sentence about it. A
magnifying glass should be available for students to take a closer look. Paper plates or a chart
labeled for sorting may be available for student to sort by attributes. Key vocab
ulary like
stripes, pattern, smooth, rough, fossil, shiny, or dull should be encouraged by the teacher and
used by students. This activity may be repeated with an additional small pan of water for
dipping rocks into and paper towels for drying them off. St
udents may tell how the water
affects the look and feel of the rocks.



Sample Assessments


General Guidelines


Documentation of student understanding will be recorded by the teacher through observation,
notes and anecdotal records as well as student
-
gener
ated products. These items will be dated
and kept in the form of portfolio assessment.



General Assessments




Photos or videotapes showing students separating mixtures and examining types
of soil



Data collection charts to record students’ observations in w
ater mixture activity



Teacher observations



Checklists or Rubrics



Anecdotal records



Activity
-
Specific Assessments




Activity 1
: Using a drawn visual organizer, the teacher assesses each student’s
ability to mix 2 solid materials and record the results with

pictures. Using paper
plates, the teacher has the students put dry rice in one and dry red beans in the
other. In a small plate in the middle of the two, she has the students mix both
materials. The teacher asks the students to describe what they did and
draw a
picture of it in the visual organizer. The process may be repeated with two new
materials. The teacher notes the students’ abilities to follow directions, mix

Prekindergarten Science

Unit 3

Mixtures

17

materials, describe what they did and predict what will happen to future similar
mixtures.

The teacher dates and records these as anecdotal records.


RICE

MIXTU
RE

BEANS





Activity 2
:Upon completing large and small group discussions of liquid mixtures,
the teacher sets up an assessment in the discovery center or at a table in center
time. On a
plastic or foam tray, the teacher places several small plastic cups of
water. Nearby, the teacher places small bowls of solids that can be mixed into the
water (sugar, salt, powdered drink mix). Students work individually to put one
scoop of a mixture into

one of the cups. After stirring, tasting and describing,
(s)he goes to the next cup and does the same. The teacher records the student’s
activities using the following checklist.

Can the student follow simple directions needed to complete the task?



Does t
he student use adequate vocabulary to describe the process and the
tastes?



Can the student describe how tastes are different or the same?



Does the student recognize and name the color of the powdered drink
mix?



When asked, can the student come up with anot
her water/solid mixture
that dissolves like these?




Activity 3
:
After examining various types of rocks in the discovery center,
students may participate in a sorting assessment activity set up by the teacher. The
teacher labels 2 paper plates: 1
-

rocks wi
th stripes (layers), 2 rocks with no stripes
(layers). The teacher introduces the activity by defining these characteristics to the
students. The students use their own eyes and magnifiers (hand lenses) to look for
rocks with stripes and ones without. The
teacher observes and asks each child to
justify his/her answers. The teacher notes accuracy and ability to use descriptive
language about the objects. This may be repeated with other attributes and
assessed the same way. Examples are: rough/smooth, holes/n
o holes, dark/light
colors.




Prekindergarten Science

Unit 3

Mixtures

18

Resources


Children’s Books




Dirt, Wonderful Dirt
by P. Murray



Everybody Needs a Rock

by Byrd Baylor



Handful of Dirt

by R. Bail



How to Dig a Hole to the Other Side of the World

by F. McNulty



Simon Underground

by Joanna Ryder



Wonderful Worms

by Linda Glaser


Teacher Resources




www.thesolutionsite.com

(grade level K)



Dig
-
in Hands
-
On Soil Investigations

from NSTA Press



Integrated Learning Activities for Young Children

by Susan L. Tr
ostle



Learning Center Activities Science

from Teacher Created Materials



Science Through Children’s Literature

by Carol & John Butzow from Teacher
Idea Press (Soil & Rock Units)



Science With Young Children

by Bess
-
Gene Holt (NAEYC)



Totline Theme
-
A
-
Saurus II

by Jean Warren


Prekind
ergarten Science

Unit 4

Position and Motion

19

Prekindergarten

Science

Unit 4: Position and Motion



Time Frame:
The content of this unit should be taught throughout the year with activities
integrated across all developmental domains (ELA, Math, Science, Social Studies and
physical, s
ocial
-
emotional, and creative development).



Unit Description


This unit is designed to help students understand and describe motion. The concept of motion
and the ability to describe observed motions are not intended to be taught in isolation and
should
be integrated across the curriculum as meaningful to the students.



Student Understandings


Students develop the ability to demonstrate various motions using their bodies. In motion
exploration students identify their body parts and develop the ability to

tell how each part
moves as well as how selected objects move. Further understanding of motion includes
moving objects and telling where they are with respect to each other and predicting how this
would change with continuing movement in the same directio
n.



Guiding Questions


1.

Can students touch their noses, shoulders, toes, and knees when asked?

2.

Can students place a block on, behind, between, over a chair?

3.

Can students describe the position of an object in relationship to his or her body?
(front, back, b
eside, over, under)

4.

Can students describe how to make an object move?

5.

Can students tell which of two objects is moving faster? Slower?



Unit 4 Grade
-
Level Expectations (GLEs)



GLE #

GLE Text and Benchmarks

Science as Inquiry

2.

Pose questions that can
be answered by using students’ own observations and
scientific knowledge (SI
-
E
-
A1) (PK
-
CS
-
I1)

3.

Use the five senses to describe observations (SI
-
E
-
A3) (PK
-
CS
-
P3)

Physical Science

15.

Demonstrate motion by using students’ own bodies (PK
-
CS
-
P3) (PS
-
E
-
B3)


Prekind
ergarten Science

Unit 4

Position and Motion

20

GLE #

GLE Text and Benchmarks

16.


Explore the motion of objects by using balls, toy cars, or spinning tops (PK
-
CS
-
I2)
(PS
-
E
-
B3)

Life Science

19.

Identify parts of the body and how they move (PK
-
CS
-
L1) (LS
-
E
-
A3)



Sample Activities



Activity 1: Body Parts (GLEs: 15, 19)


Hav
e students spread out around the room, being sure they are not too close to furniture or
each other. Students practice touching body parts to songs like
Heads, Shoulders, Knees and
Toes
. Use a variety of music and movement activities to introduce body part
s as a large
group activity. Songs and picture cards are available to have students touch different body
parts as they name them. These activities may also be done in a large area such as a gym
floor or the playground. *


Teacher note: Attention

must be gi
ven to explain that some body parts are private and should
not be touched. The teacher must handle this carefully and professionally as it becomes
necessary.



Activity 2: Body in Motion (GLEs: 15, 19)


Use a variety of music, movement activities, and gam
es to introduce body movement
directions (e.g., bend, stretch, wiggle, twist, lean) in a large group setting.
The Hokey Pokey

and
Simon Says

are examples. Students move to a variety of music, movement activities, and
games to practice running, skipping, ho
pping, and jumping in or out of doors. Students
participate in activities that allow them to bend, twist, nod, and wiggle different body parts.
Students may also listen to music with individual tape or CD players and move
independently as part of center ti
me.



Activity 3: Movement of Objects (GLEs: 2, 16)


At large group discussion, students will discuss movement of common small objects as the
teacher records on a KWL chart titled How do things move? In the block area, students may
use tops, toy cars, and

different kinds and sizes of balls and blocks to explore the movement
of objects. The teacher facilitates the activities, asking the open
-
ended, what do you think
would happen if… or why do you think that happened… questions. Student observations
should i
nclude what causes the objects to move, the speed and direction of motions, and
differences in motions. As students discover concepts, the teacher should record their
responses on the KWL chart that hangs near the block area.



Prekind
ergarten Science

Unit 4

Position and Motion

21

Sample Assessments


General
Guidelines


Documentation of student understanding will be recorded by the teacher through observation,
notes and anecdotal records as well as student
-
generated products. These items will be dated
and kept in the form of portfolio assessment.



General Ass
essments




Videotapes of music and movement activities



Data collection charts to record students’ predictions, observations in “Movement
of Objects” activity



Checklists for recording student behaviors and skills



Teacher observations



Anecdotal records



Acti
vity
-
Specific Assessments




Activity 1
: Body Parts

The teacher will interview students as individuals or in pairs asking them to touch
main parts of their bodies upon her command. As the student(s) respond, the
teacher uses the following checklist to note
accuracy or not yet known. For body
parts not known, the teacher will note and plan future lessons for students who
need practice or experience. The teacher should reassess for knowledge later in
the school year.


I KNOW MY BODY PARTS!

Child’s Name:




Date:

.

Date:

.


Head





Eyes

Ears





Nose

Mouth





Hair

Stomach





Back

Shoulders





Knees

Feet





Toes

Hands





Legs

Fingers





Arms


Prekind
ergarten Science

Unit 4

Position and Motion

22




Activity 2
: In this assessment, the teacher

works individually with each student
directing him/her to touch and move different body parts as directed. The teacher
records the date and student’s accuracy/errors for future teaching and may
reassess this knowledge later in the school year.

Twist your
head (neck), wrists


Move up and down (arms, body)

Bend your elbows, knees, head


Jump, Kick, Swing, (legs, arms)




Activity 3
: Set up an assessment using rolling cars, small balls and ramps. Have
each student come individually or in pairs and predict what

they think will
happen. Note predictions. Have the student(s) roll the cars and ball down one
ramp, describing the action. Note their observations. Next, have them put a ball
on one ramp and a car on another similar ramp. Ask which one will be fastest and

why. Record responses. Upon releasing the car and ball, the student tells what
happened and justify his/her answer. Date and record all responses.



Resources


Children’s Books




Big and Little

(a book of Opposites) by Richard Scarry



Big and Small, Short a
nd Tall

by Muriel Batherman



Exactly the Opposite

by Tana Hoban



Left or Right?

by Karl Rehm and Kay Koike



Magic School Bus Plays Ball

from Scholastic



What Makes Things Move?

from Troll


Teacher Resources




Integrated Learning Activities for Young Children

by

Susan L. Trostle



Kindergarten Teacher’s Survival Guide

by Elizabeth Crosby Stull



Ready to Use PE Activities for Grades K
-
2

by Joanne & Maxwell Landy



Compact discs



Learning Basic Skills through Music

Volume 1 by Hap Palmer



Getting to Know Myself

by Hap Pa
lmer



We all Live Together

Volumes 1
-
5 by Greg & Steve



Kids in Motion

by Greg & Steve



Prekindergarten Science

Unit 5

Plants and Animals

23

Prekindergarten

Science

Unit 5: Plants and Animals



Time Frame:
The content of this unit should be taught throughout the year with activities
integrated across all dev
elopmental domains (ELA, Math, Science, Social Studies) and
physical, social
-
emotional and creative development.



Unit Description


The unit is designed to help students identify plants and animals. It will help students
develop a sense of the world thro
ugh living things around them. These concepts are not
intended to be taught in isolation and should be integrated across the curriculum as
meaningful to students.



Student Understandings


Students should begin to observe the characteristics of different f
orms of plants and animals,
starting with those most familiar to them (e.g., pets, plants in yards and flower beds, house
plants, and plants around the school). These can be described by the most identifiable
characteristics and grouped or sorted according

to one or more of these traits (e.g., fur,
number of legs, types of colors of flowers). As students make simple observations, they can
begin to understand their own bodies and explain what body parts can do. Students may be
challenged to explain major bod
y parts in animals or plants and how they work. (e.g., legs are
for movement, mouths eat and speak, roots absorb water, flowers produce seeds).



Guiding Questions


1.

Can the student describe what would happen if he or she did not have food or
water? Can the

student transfer this knowledge to a living pet?

2.

Can the student name a plant? An animal? Can the student describe major
differences between the two?

3.

Can the student name some places where animals live?

4.

Can the student distinguish between (and imitate) l
oud and soft sounds?




Prekindergarten Science

Unit 5

Plants and Animals

24

Unit 5 Grade
-
Level Expectations (GLEs)


GLE #

GLE Text and Benchmarks

1.

Ask questions about objects and events in the environment (e.g. plants, rocks,
storms) (PK
-
CS
-
I1) (SI
-
E
-
A1)

3.

Use the five senses to describe observations
(SI
-
E
-
A3) (PK
-
CS
-
P3)

5.

Express data in a variety of ways by constructing illustrations, graphs, charts,
tables, concept maps, and oral and written explanations as appropriate (PK
-
CS
-
I5)
(SI
-
E
-
A5) (SI
-
E
-
B4)

7.

Identify and use appropriate safety procedu
res and equipment when conducting
investigations (e.g., gloves, goggles, hair ties) (PK
-
CS
-
I4) (SI
-
E
-
A7)

8.

Recognize that a variety of tools can be used to examine objects at different
degrees of magnification (e.g. hand lens, microscope) (PK
-
CS
-
I4 (SI
-
E
-
B3)

Physical Science

17.

Identify different sounds as
soft

or
loud

(PK
-
CS
-
P3) (PS
-
E
-
C1)

Life Science

20.

Give examples of different kinds of plants and different kinds of animals (PK
-
CS
-
L1) (LS
-
E
-
A4)

21.

Distinguish food items from nonfood items (PK
-
CS
-
L1) (LS
-
E
-
A6)

22.

Learn about animals and plants through nonfiction literature (PK
-
CS
-
L1) (LS
-
E
-
B1)

23.

Observe and care for pets and plants (PK
-
CS
-
L1) (LS
-
E
-
B1)

24.

Describe plants and animals in the schoolyard or home environments (PK
-
CS
-
L1)
(LS
-
E
-
C1)



Sample Activities



Activity 1: Where Are Animals Found? (5, 22, 24)



Students participate in read aloud non
-
fiction literature on animals and their homes. With
teacher assistance, students create a chart (or visual organizer) with three categorie
s:


(1)
land animals, (2) water animals and (3) air animals (these move through the air and may
live in trees or on high cliffs, e.g. birds). Students participate in class discussion about
where animals live and places they can be seen moving about. Studen
ts respond to guided
questions about why certain animals must have a specific environment to survive (fish:
water; birds: trees). Students sort various pictures of these animals into proper categories.
Students should explain their choices. Some students
may be ready for an introduction to
animals that live underground (worms, moles) or in other familiar habitats.



Activity 2: Animal Sounds (3, 17, 22)


Through non
-
fiction literature and chanting or singing, students imitate the sounds that
animals make
. Students may describe and compare animal sounds to people sounds

Prekindergarten Science

Unit 5

Plants and Animals

25

(crying, talking, singing). Students may briefly discuss how people use words, gestures
and writing to share ideas with each other. Students should generate ideas about animals
“talking” to

each other or communicating (dog: barking; cat: meowing or hissing; deer:
stomping ground). Students list and tell reasons that animals might make sounds (lion:
roaring, bird: singing). Play an audiotape or imitate animals’ sounds while displaying
picture
s of each animal. Have the students classify the sounds as soft or loud.


Lead a
discussion about why animal sounds may be loud or soft. As an extension, have students
list sounds around their houses and school that are loud and soft. Ask why? Accept open
-
ended answers and encourage critical thinking (quiet voices: soft talking, fire alarm: loud
whistles or people yelling).



Activity 3: Classroom Pet (GLEs: 3, 5, 7, 20, 23, 24)


Safety note: Health and safety precautions should be discussed when caring f
or the pet
(handwashing, gentle handling). Teachers should check with administrators on school
policy about pets
.


Students will learn from observation of and caring for a class pet such as rabbit, hamster,
gerbil, fish, guinea pig, or frog. Emphasis shou
ld be given to helping students understand
that pets are living creatures and need proper care and handling. Students will observe the
pet’s actions while it is at rest, eating, moving about, and playing. Using their senses,
students should record observat
ions by drawing pictures and/or through discussion.
Based on developmental level of students, the teacher may record their observations on a
chart in appropriate formats. If indoor pets are not available, students may feed and
observe outdoor wildlife such

as birds and squirrels. Discussion of the common pets
(dog, cat, bird, hamster) should include the basic needs of animals such as food, water,
shelter, and space (habitat).



Activity 4: Plants Around Me (GLEs: 5, 20, 21, 23, 24)


Have the students obse
rve schoolyard or neighborhood plants and trees during the school
year. Give children the opportunity to use all of their senses to explore the plants (feel
bark, smell bark and leaves, see textures, taste edibles such as parsley, maple syrup,
cinnamon). H
ave students tell about their findings as the teacher records with simple
pictures and words to model scientific records. Repeat this every few months,
encouraging the students to draw what they see on their own and discuss it with others.


Lead them in a
discussion of how the plants change in shape, color or size over time.
Discuss changes in the environment such as weather, temperature, and season and how
these changes affect the plants.


Students participate in a discussion of plants that we eat as food
s. Students list examples
of plant foods as the teacher records them on a large list with words and picture clues.
Continued discussion is built around the information that some plants should not be eaten

Prekindergarten Science

Unit 5

Plants and Animals

26

because they can make us sick.

Students participate

in making a list of things that are
edible (foods) and things that are not (toys, clothing, etc.)



Activity 5: Classroom Plants (GLEs: 1, 8, 20, 23 24)


Provide a variety of non
-
poisonous potted plants (e.g., cactus, ivy) for the students to care
for a
nd observe. In a small group setting, students discuss why plants do not move.
Students realize or recall that plants have roots that hold them into the ground as they
grow. Students participate in discussing what plants need to live (water, sunlight, soil

and/or nutrients). Guided questions lead students to discuss how plants use these
resources and what would happen if plants did not get enough
or

too much of these
resources. Each student will have the opportunity to be
plant helper

for a week to water
cl
ass plants. The teacher determines how much water each plant needs and marks it with
a color stick indicating what day of the week it will be watered (Monday = green,
Tuesday = orange). On this same stick, the teacher writes a number indicating how long
(m
uch) it will be watered. The student who is plant helper counts to this number as he or
she pours. When he or she reaches that number, he/she STOPS. (small pot = 2, larger pot
= 4 or 5; big pot=10) Students draw and tell about growth of some plants over t
ime.
Students dictate observations and draw what they see in a “
Plant Book
” made for the
class to browse throughout the year. Students measure height, count leaves and record
this each month with teacher assistance. Students may also use magnifying glasses

to
study leaves, stems, and see small insects that may come to make the plant their home.
Students participate in periodic reviews and discussion of the
Plant Book

as they begin to
see the progression of plant growth over time.







Sample Assessments



General Guidelines


Documentation of student understanding will be recorded by the teacher through
observation, notes and anecdotal records as well as student
-
generated products. These
items will be dated and kept in the form of portfolio assessment.



Gen
eral Assessments




Data collection charts (participation in large or small group discussion)



Photos or videotapes or audio tapes of activities



Checklists for recording student knowledge, behaviors and skills



Teacher observations



Anecdotal records




Prekindergarten Science

Unit 5

Plants and Animals

27

Specifi
c Assessments




Activity 1
:

Upon creating a flow chart of time and animal activity, have
students look at the pictures and tell you what the animal does in each one.
Question the reason for each activity and why it is important for survival and a
healthy l
ife. Record students’ responses and note their abilities to follow the
sequence of events logically.




Activity 2
:

Have children work individually or in pairs to sort the animals by
habitat (water, land, trees and air). Use a simple checklist to record the
following information on each student:



Can the student listen and follow the sorting directions?



How accurately did the student sort the animals into habitat?



Can the student explain his or her choice clearly?



Can the student respond to open
-
ended question
s? (What would
happen if a fish lived in a tree? Suppose people had to live in trees.
What would you do?)





Activity 4
:
Using a recording of animal sounds (or producing them yourself)
have students evaluate if the sound is soft or loud. Give each student t
wo hand
signs made from a paper plate or index card. Mark one LOUD with a picture
of a big mouth. Label the other
soft
with a picture of a small mouth. Play each
sound and pause asking them to listen to the sound. Have individuals hold up
the card that sa
ys LOUD or soft as appropriate. Look for accuracy. Ask
students to discuss their choices. Record their responses.



Resources



Children’s Books




Gregory the Terrible Eater

by Mitchell Sharmat



How a Seed Grows

by Helene J. Jordan



How Do Things Grow?

from T
roll



The Carrot Seed

by Ruth Krauss



Planting a Rainbow

by Lois Ehlert



The Tiny Seed

by Eric Carle



A House is a House for Me

by Mary Ann Hoberman



A Snail’s Pace

by Allan Fowler



Are You a Snail?

by Judy Allen & Tudor Humphries



Big Red Barn

by Margaret Wise B
rown



Cock
-
a
-
Doodle
-
Doo

by Venice Shone



Counting is For the Birds

by Frank Mazzola, Jr.



Fish Eyes

by Lois Ehlert


Prekindergarten Science

Unit 5

Plants and Animals

28



Fish is Fish

by Leo Lionni



Have You Seen my Cat?

by Eric Carle



Have You Seen Bug?

by Joanne Oppenheim



In the Small Small Pond

by Denise Fleming



In the Tall Tall Grass

by Denise Fleming



Inside a Barn in the Country

by Alyssa Satin Capucilli



Let’s Go to the Zoo

from Troll



Some Smug Slug

by Pamela Duncan Edwards



Swimmy

by Leo Lionni



Very Hungry Caterpillar

by Eric Carle



Seeds Get Around

by Nancy Whit
e



Mouse Mess

by Linnea Riley


Teacher Resources




Project Learning Tree



Project WILD



www.thesolutionsite.com

(grade level K)



Amazing Ants



Animals Around Us



Agriculture in the Classroom



Bear With Us



Beautiful B
utterflies



Do You Want to be a Bird?



Dog Tales



Down at the Pond



Farm Charm



Fur, Feathers, Scales, and Shells



Hats Off to Animals



Oceans



Over in the Meadow



www.kinderkorner.com




Kindergarten Teacher’s Survival Gu
ide

by Elizabeth Crosby Stull



Integrated Learning Activities for Young Children

by Susan L. Trostle



Learning Center Activities

from Teacher Created Materials



Science Through Children’s Literature

by Carol & John Butzow



Science and Stories by Hilarie N. Sta
ton & Tara McCarthy



Totline Theme
-
A
-
Saurus II

by Jean Warren



Prekindergarten Science

Unit 6

Changes in the Weather

29

Prekindergarten

Science

Unit 6: Changes in the Weather



Time Frame:

The content of this unit should be taught throughout the year with
activities integrated across all developmental domains
(ELA, Math, Science, Social
Studies) and physical, social
-
emotional, and creative development.



Unit Description


This unit is designed to help the students become aware of the weather conditions and
changes in the weather through physical sensing and obs
ervable events. These concepts
are not intended to be taught in isolation and should be integrated across the curriculum
as meaningful to the students.



Student Understandings


Teacher
-
guided weather reports are part of the daily routine. These reports ar
e made
by

the students using simple observations made with their own senses. Vocabulary should
include descriptions of 1) the sky, 2) the wind and 3) the temperature. The teacher may
record on a large weather chart with simple words and allow the weather h
elper to draw
pictures related to the report. Emphasis should be given to changes in weather and how
we know and record these. Students may tell about clouds, the sun, forms of precipitation
(e.g., rain, fog, mist, sleet, snow), and moving air (if noticeab
le: wind blowing a lot, a
little, or not at all). Children can listen to and discuss simple non
-
fiction readings and
stories about weather. Major weather events (hurricanes, tornadoes, droughts, floods) that
directly affect students or their families and f
riends may be introduced. Students should
understand the consequences of good and bad weather conditions on plants, animals and
people. Special instruction activities on protecting themselves, pets, plants, etc. from
extreme or dangerous weather should be
mentioned as it becomes necessary and is
appropriate.



Guiding Questions


1.

Can the students describe the weather today?

2.

Can the students describe different types of weather?

3.

Can the students describe changes in weather over time?

4.

Can the students distingui
sh between hot and cold?

5.

Can the students distinguish between wet and dry?

6.

Can the students “read” picture and simple weather charts?


Prekindergarten Science

Unit 6

Changes in the Weather

30

7.

Does the students know what a thermometer (tells hot or cold), wind sock
(tells wind or no wind), and their senses (eyes c
an see sky, sun, clouds; skin
and body feel temperature or wind) tell about the weather?

8.

Can the students describe the kind of clothing appropriate for hot and cold
weather? For wet or dry weather?



Unit 6 Grade
-
Level Expectations (GLEs)


GLE #

GLE Text a
nd Benchmarks

Science as Inquiry

1.

Ask questions about objects and events in the environment (SE
-
E
-
A1) (PK
-
CS
-
I1)

2.

Pose questions that can be answered by using students’ own observations and
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-
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Physical Science


18.


Identify selected substances as
hot

or
cold

Earth and Space Science

26.

Describe the weather and its daily changes (PK
-
CS
-
ES2) (ESS
-
E
-
A4)

27.

Describe different types of weat
her students have experienced and give examples
of how daily activities and appropriate attire are affected by weather conditions
(PK
-
CS
-
ES2) (ESS
-
E
-
A4)





Prekindergarten Science

Unit 6

Changes in the Weather

31

Sample Activities



Activity 1: Daily Weather (GLEs: 1, 3, 5, 6, 26)


Using a pictograph with ra
in, Sun, cloud, and snow, have students determine the day’s
weather. Students are to use their senses (sight, hearing, smell, feeling) to know about the
weather and tell about what they have sensed. Count and record days at the end of the
week or month wit
h each type of weather and construct a bar graph to compare number
of days with each type of weather.






































SUNNY

CLOUDY

RAINY

OTHER


Activity 2: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer (GLEs: 1, 3, 5, 27)


Students work inde
pendently and in small groups to construct a wall mural that
incorporates the sky, foliage, people, and animals. The mural may be kept up all year and
changed with each season. Students should show major changes in the following:



Leaves on trees (budding,

green and growing, turning colors, fall off, budding
out



Plants (growing, flowering, dying)



Changes in appearances and types of animals seen (thicker coats, babies,
burying seeds for winter)



Sky and ground details according to the season (dead grass, we
t with puddles)


Students take several supervised walks outside as each season presents changes. They
observe and discuss colors, shapes, textures, and other physical features of the outdoors.
Students also collect items that evidence changing weather or t
ime. (leaves, sticks, moss,
acorns, pinecones, pollen) Collected items can be placed in a small paper bag for each
student. Students later choose a few items to add to the mural. While adding his/her items
to the mural, students will discuss their signific
ance to the appearance of the season.
Through hands
-
on studies each season, teacher
-
guided questions, and direct instruction,
students should be able to recognize and cite the characteristics of each season. Specific
examples are:



Leaves on trees or leave
s changing color and falling off or budding out



Animal activities such as hunting, burying, migration and hibernation


Prekindergarten Science

Unit 6

Changes in the Weather

32



People wearing shorts, swimsuits, sweaters, coats or mittens



Amount of sunlight we have each day (a lot in summer, less in winter)


Activi
ty 3: Using a Thermometer (GLEs: 2, 3, 4, 5, 18, 26)


Students observe the temperature daily, with their skin and physical feeling at first. With
time, students develop the concept of temperature and how it can be described with
words and a simple recordi
ng instrument (modified thermometer) Students begin this
activity very simply with a paper plate divided it into four equal sections. The teacher has
labeled each quarter of the plate with temperature words and colored each as follows:
(hot


red, warm
-

or
ange, cool
-

green, cold
-

blue). Attach a spinning pointer in the center
so students may move it to the section that accurately describes the temperature that day.


Later, the class may progress to actual use of a round (face
-
like) thermometer with
number
s and colors (to indicate temperature). If you cannot find a thermometer with
color, snap the cover off and add colors to yours so it
copies

the paper plate model.
Students tell how they know when the temperature is hot or cold. Explain that warm
means ju
st a little hot and cool means a little cold. Each day, have a student observe the
weather. Ask the reporter how it feels outside. As needed, explain and redefine
temperature as being hot, cold, or somewhere in the middle. The teacher may write the
tempera
ture word on a board while the student moves the pointer to the correct section of
the model.


Clearly define a thermometer as a tool that measures heat/cold. On occasion, ask the
students what a thermometer is (tool) and what it measures (hot/cold). Incre
ase
understandings later by telling students that numbers on the thermometer tell exactly how
hot or how cold it is. (Example: 0 degrees F = freezing cold; 90 degrees F = hot. At
centers or stations, have students sort foods that are served hot or cold (ic
e cream, soup)
or students may sort clothing that is worn in hot or cold weather (shorts or coat). Use a
visual organizer for sorting with HOT written in red and COLD in blue.



Activity 4: Making a Windsock (GLEs: 2, 3, 4, 26)


Students explore a lightw
eight fabric windsock that is to be placed outdoors near the
classroom. Upon exploration, students describe the windsock and talk about how they
think it might tell if the wind is blowing. Students hang the windsock on a hanger and
place it in the room nea
r a small fan. With teacher assistance, they predict and observe
what happens when the fan (pointed at the windsock) is turned on low, medium, and
high. Upon observation and discussion, students will go to an art area that is set up with
materials for maki
ng windsocks out of construction paper (to be rolled into a tube and
stapled), pipe cleaner (handle), and colored streamers (to hang down and respond to
wind). With teacher direction and simple written directions, each student will make
his/her own windsoc
k to take home. The real windsock will be placed outside the
classroom for daily observation and reporting the wind as part of the weather.



Prekindergarten Science

Unit 6

Changes in the Weather

33


Windsock Directions:



Construction Paper strip about 6” wide,
15” long








Samp
le Assessments


General Guidelines:


Documentation of student understanding will be recorded by the teacher through
observation, notes and anecdotal records as well as student
-
generated products. These
items will be dated and kept in the form of portfolio
assessment.



General Assessments
:




Bar graph to record types of weather



Checklist of student responses about weather



Drawings of different weather conditions



Data collection charts



Photographs of models and experiment results



Audiotapes



Photos or videotap
es of activities



Teacher observations



Anecdotal records



Activity Specific Assessments
:




Activity 1
: Students may be interviewed individually to make sure that each
one understands the concept of weather and how it is measured using simple
tools each day
. The teacher will ask each student the following questions and
record his/her responses. Notes are made on accuracy of knowledge, skill in
using tools, ability to describe reasonably the relationship between the tool
and the weather it measures.



In what

ways can you tell about the weather? (sky, wind, temperature)

Crepe paper strips to
glue


Prekindergarten Science

Unit 6

Changes in the Weather

34



How can your senses (seeing, hearing, smelling and touching) help
you tell about the weather?



Can you tell how weather changes over time? (days, weeks, seasons)



What tools can we use to help u
s know more about the weather?
(windsock, thermometer, eyes to see sky., computers and satellites
used by TV. stations)



What sources of information can tell you about the weather? (TV,
radio, newspaper, computer)




Activity 3
: After completing the thermomet
er activity, the teacher will set out
several thermometers and ask students questions about them. The students
will answer as the teacher records their responses.



What do the colors on this thermometer mean? (hot, warm, cool, cold)



What do the numbers on
this thermometer mean? (Big {high} numbers
= hot, little {low} numbers = cold)



On this bar thermometer, what would show hot? (high numbers, more
red) What would show cold? (low numbers, less red)




Activity 4
:
After the activity, ask the students to answer
the following
questions. Record answers looking for student understanding of the tool and
what wind is.



Tell me about how the windsock works?



What would the windsock look like if there were no wind? A little
wind? A lot of strong wind?



Are there other thin
gs around us that can tell us about moving air
(wind)? (grasses, leaves moving, clothes on the clothesline, doors
slamming shut, umbrellas being pulled or pushed when we hold them)



Resources



Children’s Books




A Busy Year
by Leo Lionni



A Log’s Life

by E
. Wendy Pffefer and Robin Brinkman



The Giving Tree
by Shel Silverstein



Red Leaf, Yellow Leaf
by Lois Ehlert



Clifford and the Big Leaf Pile

by Norman Bridwell



Frederick
by Leo Lionni



Snowed in at Pokeweed Public School
by John Bianchi



The

Snowy Day

by Ezra
Jack Keats



Thomas’ Snowsuit

by Robert Munsch



Time to Sleep

by Denise Fleming



Clouds

from Troll



First Day of Spring

by Sharon Gordon


Prekindergarten Science

Unit 6

Changes in the Weather

35



It Looked like Spilt Milk

by Charles G. Shaw



Mud

by Mary Lyn Ray



My Spring Robin

by Anne Rockwell



The Cloud Book

by Tomie de
Paola



Amelia Bedelia Goes Camping

by Peggy Parish



I Can Read About Seasons

by Robyn Supraner



Frog and Toad All Year

by Arnold Lobel



Miss Happ in The Poison Ivy Case

by Joan M. Lexau



What Makes the Weather?

by Janet Palazzo



What Makes it Rain?

by Keith Bran
dt



Who Cares about the Weather

by Melvin Berger



Squirrels All Year Long
by Melvin Berger


Teacher Resources




www.kinderkorner.com




www.thesolutionsite.com

(grade
level K)



Weather Whys



Winter Wonderland



Wonderful World of Weather



Kindergarten Teacher’s Survival Guide

by Elizabeth Crosby Stull



Integrated Learning Activities for Young Children

by Susan L. Trostle



Totline Theme
-
A
-
Saurus

II by Jean Warren



Weather

themat
ic unit from Teacher Created Materials



Prekindergarten Science

Unit 7

Objects in the Sky

36

Prekindergarten

Science

Unit 7: Objects in the Sky


Time Frame:

The content of this unit should be taught throughout the year with activities
integrated across all developmental domains (ELA, Math, Science, Social
Studies) and
physical, social
-
emotional, and creative development.



Unit Description


This unit is designed to introduce students to the sun, moon, and stars. This unit defines the
sky and has students consider clouds and weather, air and space travel, an
d animals that use
the sky to move from one place to another (insects, birds). These concepts are not intended to
be taught in isolation and should be integrated across the curriculum as meaningful to
students.



Student Understandings


Students begin to u
nderstand the sky as a special place above and around Earth that has air,
wind and clouds. The students learn about what the Sun and stars are and how the Sun helps
us on Earth. Students learn what the Moon is and briefly discuss space travel. Students
co
nsider how animals and people may travel across the sky. Fiction and non
-
fiction literature
expose students to the Moon, Sun, and stars in science and culture today and in the past.
Fiction and non
-
fiction literature on clouds, birds, airplanes and space
ships expand student
understanding of the sky.



Guiding Questions


1.

Can students describe what they see in the sky during the daytime?

2.

Can students describe what they see in the sky at night?

3.

Can students define a telescope? (tool that makes sky objects lo
ok bigger/closer)

4.

Can students describe properties of the Sun? (hot, ball of burning gases.; far
away; keeps us warm, is not visible at night, can be hidden behind clouds)

5.

Can students describe the Moon? (large rock
-
like, moves around our Earth)

6.

Can stude
nts tell what stars are? (like our Sun, very far away)

7.

Can students describe clouds? Rain clouds? (white fluffy clouds, dark clouds)

8.

Can students name some objects that move through the sky?




Prekindergarten Science

Unit 7

Objects in the Sky

37

Unit 7 Grade
-
Level Expectations (GLEs)


GLE #

GLE Text and Ben
chmarks

Science as Inquiry

1.

Ask questions about objects and events in the environment (PK
-
CS
-
I1) (SI
-
E
-
A1)

3.

Use the five senses to describe observations (SI
-
E
-
A3) (PK
-
CS
-
P3)

7.

Identify and use appropriate safety procedures and equipment when cond
ucting
investigations (PK
-
CS
-
14) (SI
-
E
-
B3)

8.

Recognize that a variety of tools can be used to examine objects at different
degrees of magnification (e.g., hand lens, microscope) (PK
-
CS
-
I4) (SI
-
E
-
B3)

Position and Motion of Objects

16.

Explore the motion

of objects using balls, toy cars or spinning tops (PK
-
CS
-
12)
(PS
-
E
-
B3)

Earth and Space Science

26.

Describe the weather and its daily changes (PK
-
CS
-
ES2)

28.

Learn about objects in the sky through nonfiction literature (PK
-
CS
-
ES3) (ESS
-
E
-
B1)



Sample

Activities



Activity 1: Our Sun (GLEs: 1, 3, 7, 28)



Safety Note: Teachers must insure that students are seated and not moving about when
classroom lights are off. Teacher must test the flashlight and candle heat to determine safe
distances for student
s to feel warmth, not heat. (To avoid burns)


Through guided questions and large group discussion, have students list what they know
about the Sun (bright, yellow, gives off light, causes things to become warm, etc.). Turn
classroom lights down or off for
a few moments. Use a bright flashlight to illustrate how the
Sun gives off light and heat. Students may touch the lens of the flashlight and feel the
warmth. Later, in
small groups, light a candle
.
Blow the candle out and remove it from reach
of all studen
ts. Briefly discuss day and night. Using student models, show how Earth spins
around the Sun and causes day and night. Question students about why we sometimes see the
Sun and sometimes we do not. Along with these activities, students will read or listen t
o
simple nonfiction and fiction books about our Sun.



Teacher note:
Give each student the opportunity to see, smell and describe the candle flame.
Individually, have students place one of their hands 12 inches or more above the candle
flame and feel the
heat*.




Prekindergarten Science

Unit 7

Objects in the Sky

38

Activity 2: Shadows (GLEs: 3, 28)


Take students outside on a sunny morning or afternoon. Students look for their shadows as
they stand then move their bodies. Students locate the Sun in the sky and notice that their
bodies block the light of th
e Sun causing shadows. Lead a discussion of shadow shapes.
Have students locate other shadows from objects on the school grounds (buildings,
playground equipment, trees). Students should know that
shade
is a large shadow caused by
trees or buildings. The
students will participate in describing what they see about their
shadows (size, shape, dark, moves when they move, etc.). This activity may be done or
repeated in conjunction with Groundhog Day. Students participate in shared or echo reading
of simple fic
tion and nonfiction literature related to shadows.



Activity 3: Our Moon and the Night Sky (GLEs: 1, 3, 28)


Through guided questions and large/small group discussion, students list what they see in the
sky at night (Moon, stars, etc.). Students share r
ead aloud books and discussion how the
Moon moves around the Earth. Conduct a simple demonstration with three students
representing the Earth, the Sun and the Moon. Discuss that the Moon moves around Earth
and reflects light from the Sun. Introduce the Moo
n as having different shapes at different
times because the Earth makes shadows on the moon as they both move about the Sun. Some
students may know or be ready to know that the Moon phases are a regular pattern over time.
Use this concept as appropriate t
o student understanding.

In the art center, have students fold a large sheet of paper in half. On one side, label it
NIGHT; label the other side, DAY. Students draw and color what they see in the sky during
the day and at night. Hang these pictures to sha
re with others.



Activity 4: Stars (GLEs: 1, 3, 8, 28)


Safety note: File one end of the toothpick smooth. Student punches paper with pointed end.
Supervise well
.


Have students recall earlier discussions on what they see at in the sky at night. Review
the
definition of stars and introduce the patterns they make in sky (constellations). Show
pictures and have students tell about very familiar constellations such as the Big Dipper.
Question students about what scientists and others use to see stars more
clearly. Students
learn the word
telescope

as an instrument that helps us to see something very far away.
Students participate in looking through a telescope (if available) to see things far away (paper
plates placed on trees to resemble the Moon or stars)
. Fiction and non
-
fiction literature may
enhance student concepts of the Sun, Moon and stars. Emphasize that our Sun is a star (gives
off light and heat) and that it looks so big because it is close to us. Students should know the
fact that stars are still

in the sky during the day, but because of the brightness of the Sun,
people cannot see them.



Prekindergarten Science

Unit 7

Objects in the Sky

39

In the art center, provide students with a large sheet of black paper. Students look at
photographs and pictures of the night sky and identify shapes or conste
llations that stars
make. Using a round toothpick, the student punches holes in the black paper to create a star
pattern. Students must be seated to do this activity. Toothpicks stay at the table at all times.)
Have a flashlight available to shine from the

back so the star holes light up. The student may
dictate a statement about his/her work as the teacher writes it. Post this activity to share with
others.



Activity 5: Clouds (GLEs: 1, 3, 26, 28)


Using photographs of various clouds in the sky, student
s will see and describe different
shapes, sizes, and colors in clouds. Students tell how they know when rain is coming (dark
clouds, news reports, sight, smell, feel wind, etc.). Direct them to a discussion of the sky
clouds overhead. Ask students to list
what rain clouds are like (dark, black, gray, thick, block
Sun). Nonfiction and fiction literature about clouds may be shared with students. Have
students use cotton balls (clip on clothespin for holding) to paint white clouds on light blue
paper. Students

will describe their painting of the sky in fair or good weather as the teacher
writes what they say. Students will use cotton balls dipped in black, white, and gray paint to
paint a rainy day or bad weather sky. Students will describe their painting as th
e teacher takes
dictation. Students may put various cloud paintings together in a book to share at school or at
home.



Activity 6: What Moves Through the Sky?

(GLEs: 1, 16)


In a large or small group discussion, students tell about things that they have
seen, heard or
felt moving through the sky. As students list things that they know move through the sky.
(Birds, insects, sports balls, airplanes, helicopters, spaceships, and astronauts), the teacher
writes the list on a large flip chart then adds picture
s or student drawings of these objects to
the written list. Students then tell how these things move without falling down (fly with
wings, fly with fuel energy and wings). The teacher adds these responses to the list. Extend
the list to insure that student
s understand how things fly through the air and into the sky.




Prekindergarten Science

Unit 7

Objects in the Sky

40

Sample Assessments



General Guidelines


Documentation of student understanding will be recorded by the teacher through observation,
notes and anecdotal records as well as student
-
generated
products. These items will be dated
and kept in the form of portfolio assessment.



General Assessments




Anecdotal records



Checklist or rubric



Drawings (of night and day sky)



Data collection charts (of weather across a week)



Photographs of models



Audio or
video tapes



Student vocabulary about concept



Teacher observation and questioning



Activity
-
Specific Assessments




Activity 2
: At the science center, students will sort objects (fork, small book,
pencil, small ball, solid flat plastic triangle, hairbrush, l
arge foam alphabet letter)
onto a mat that has predrawn black outlines to match each shape. The Shadow
Matching activity may include a flashlight placed on the table and taped down so
it doesn’t move to distort the shadow. Students may hold the object abo
ut 12” in
front of the flashlight and see the projected light and shadow. Then the student
places that object on the mat corresponding with the matching shadow. Similar to
a puzzle, this activity requires visual discrimination, shape matching, and the
chi
ld’s ability to describe the object and its shadow. Ask about similarities and
differences among the objects and shadows (What is round, straight, long?)
Record student responses as anecdotal records. Observe for student
understanding, accuracy and the ab
ility to justify his/her answer.




Activity 4
: Upon completion of star discussion and art activity, the teacher will
question each student for content understanding and note his/her responses. The
following checklist may be used:



Tell me about stars
. (They
are far away, they are like our sun, they are big
balls of burning gas in space, they make patterns or designs, they are seen
at night) Any response is acceptable, however, note accuracy of facts and
detail. How much do they recall?



Tell me about our Sun
.
(big ball of burning gasses, like the other stars, is
closer, makes day and night, is hot, and gives light, we [Earth] moves

Prekindergarten Science

Unit 7

Objects in the Sky

41

around it). Any response is acceptable, however, note accuracy of facts
and detail. How much do they recall?



Tell me about your sta
r punch art
? A teacher observes responses and
records evidence of the concept understandings, creative thought, fine
motor control, and description of light coming through the holes.




Activity 6
: Upon completion of this activity, have students work individ
ually or in
pairs to complete the following tasks. Given a number of pictures of flying objects
(house fly, lovebug, bird, toy airplane, football or soccer ball, real airplane,
helicopter, fireworks rocket, real space capsule and rocket launcher) Students
will
pull 2 of the pictures at a time and tell which one goes faster and slower than the
other. Responding to open
-
ended questions, students will give reasons for their
answers. The teacher records responses looking for some accuracy, creativity and
beginn
ing ability to reason and solve the problem.




Prekindergarten Science

Unit 7

Objects in the Sky

42

Resources



Children’s Books




Our Friend the Sun

by Janet Palazzo



The Sun is My Favorite Star

by Frank Asch



Gretchen Groundhog, It’s Your Day

by Abby Levine



Come Out Shadow Wherever You Are!

By Bernice Myers



Guess Whose Shadow

by Stephen R. Swinburne



Shadows
translated by Marcia Brown



Papa, Please Get the Moon for Me

by Eric Carle



Grandfather Twilight
by Barbara Berger



Good Night Moon

by Margaret Wise Brown



The Night Sky

by Felix James



Our Stars

by Anne Rockwe
ll



My First Book About Space

by Dinah L. Moche



Simple Science Solar System

by Vivian Fernandez



I Can Read About Planets

from Troll Associates



Teacher Resources




www.thesolutionsite.com

(grade level K)



Lost

in Space



My Earthly Home



Solar System



Space Mission Millennium



Unlocking the Mysteries of the Sky



Integrated Learning Activities for Young Children

by Susan L. Trostle



Science Through Children’s Literature

by Carol & John Butzow



Science and Stories

by Hil
arie N. Staton