Friday, January 18, 2013

Vertebrate Science Stations

Lately in science, we've been studying vertebrates and for the first time all year, we took the plunge with science stations last week. Since we've done math in stations pretty much all year with Math Workshop and we also do Daily 5 (where reading, writing, and word work all occur simultaneously throughout our class), we already had a lot of practice learning this way.

During each rotation in science, which lasted about 25-30 minutes, we had eight students working at each of the three stations. The three stations included a hands-on, investigation involving bird feathers; a "scavenger hunt" activity classifying different animals into the five vertebrate classes based on their specific characteristics; and reading the vertebrate section in our Life Science books and recording our learning in our own words, with accompanying illustrations.

As with doing anything for the first time, our science stations weren't entirely perfect; however, we felt it was pretty successful overall with being engaging, collaborative, interesting, and most of all educational!

Check out the pictures below, many of which were taken by Caitlyn, and feel free to ask us any questions or leave us a comment. Thanks for reading!

Station #1: Bird Feathers Investigation

In this station, we observed different bird feathers to help us explore how different types of feathers help birds survive. Here, we are placing droplets of water on different types of bird feathers.

As we investigated the different bird feathers, we used the chart above to record our observations.

Here, we're measuring bird feathers and observing
how different types of feathers react to wind.

Station #2: Classifying Vertebrates 
In this station, we used the Smartboard, computers, and books to find vertebrates and classify them into one of the five vertebrate classes based on their characteristics.  Online, we mainly used this website to classify animals.
As far as books, we used our Life Science textbook and about a half-dozen other books on animals we had in our classroom library.

As we identified vertebrates online and in books, we used this chart
to classify the animals based on the characteristics of their vertebrate class.

Station #3: Learning Highlights

In this station, we had the option of reading the vertebrate section of our Life Science book with a partner or independently. As we read, we recorded highlights of our learning (in our own words) and drew correlating pictures to help us visualize and remember what we learned.  

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1 comment:

Lori H said...

Love your science stations.....we do something similar! Keep up the good work!

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