Sunday, 23 November 2014

Classroom Project - Making Shoebox Habitats


Last week, my class did their science project about habitats. Each group had to make a habitat using both natural and man-made objects. Each habitat was scaled down to fit in a shoebox. They used twigs and plant shoots to make trees and branches, stones for rocks, and tiny grass blades for vegetation. Students living close to the beach brought sand and tiny shells. For the man-made materials, they used play dough, North American animalsaquatic animalsrainforest animalssafari animalsfarm animals, and river animals. I can't even begin to tell you how much fun this was for my students. I let each group take turns to go out in the school garden to collect natural materials for their habitats. 

 
This group used two shades of brown play-dough for the muddy wetland. The lighter brown is the water. The twigs represent mangrove trees. 

This group made the sea water, fishes, starfish, and seashells (I think) with play dough. The sand came from a dark-sand beach.


One group found a flowering plant with tiny orange seeds that resembled miniature pumpkins. They included it in their farm habitat (see this picture above). Thy also included tiny white flowers in the garden.

 After they were all finished, I set up a display area for the rest of the student body to view my students' work. My students were also present to explain to the visitors about their habitats and to answer the other kids' questions. Later on, they also had to answer my questions as I interviewed each group about their project and group member participation. I wish I took more pictures but my camera battery was dying (sigh!).  I let them take their habitats home. They had to develop their own roster systems for determining who gets to take it home for certain days.

To precede this activity, I let them practice sorting animals according to their respective habitats. You can download your free sorting mats here. You will also need plastic animals (or you can use small pictures of animals instead).


Friday, 24 October 2014

How to Make a Food Web - A Complete Guide

How-to-make-a-food-web

I made a food web building kit which sequentially builds the creation of food webs from food chains. It is a 10 page illustrated step by step tutorial with food chain-making worksheets and answer keys. It also has activity sets for making a safari food web, forest food web, garden food web, wetland food web, ocean food web, and Arctic food web.

Many students do not understand food webs and they tend to have a few misconceptions about them. They may write each organism more than once because in their minds, there are two things that an organism cannot do:
1. An organism cannot eat an be eaten at the same time. (False)
2. An organism cannot be eaten then live to eat another because it is dead. (False)

Therefore, these students may think that they have to draw a replacement organism to replace the ‘dead’ one.

To prevent this, it is necessary to first, to get them to see that each organism in the food chain or food web, represents all the other organisms of its kind in the habitat.

How-to-make-a-food-chain
It has arrows and poster labels for each food web habitat.

Food-chain-worksheets Food-web-poster-example 

habitat-organisms Food-web-tutorial

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Divali Activities in my Classroom

Tomorrow will be a holiday here in Trinidad and Tobago. It's called Divali (pronounced diwali) or Deepavali. It's the Hindu festival of light. The festival spiritually signifies the victory of light over darkness, knowledge over ignorance, good over evil, and hope over despair. Tomorrow night many streets and homes will be adorned with tiny lit earthen pots called deyas. It's such a beautiful sight to behold and the Indian food is the part I look forward to the most. I'm just sharing a few pictures of Divali displays and activities that my class has done.
 


Friday, 17 October 2014

How to make a food web - free posters


How to make a food web - These are free posters I made showing the six steps I use with my students. These detailed steps are strictly for making food webs. It can be downloaded here for free from my TpT store.

Saturday, 27 September 2014

Free Grid Paper Pages

Free grid paper
Printable grid paper is real must-have for your math sheet-files because you can teach so many topics with it. I made these free downloadable blackline grid templates that are drawn to scale both for inches and cm. Use them for creating symmetry worksheets, bar graphs, reflections (flips), translations (slides), rotations (turns), area and perimeter models and 100 charts. The exact sizes in this set are: .5cm x .5cm grids (for making hundreds charts and multiplication charts) 1cm x 1cm grids, 2cm x cm grids, and 1 inch x 1 inch grids. 

Here's another use I found for them: fitting in nets of cubes. This is an excerpt of my free Nets of Cubes Activity Sheets.
Cutting and folding nets for cubes

Friday, 26 September 2014

Tangled Tales - A spin on fairy tales

Free for 2 days only - Karleen Tauszik's Tangled Tales are free on Kindle from Friday 26th to Saturday 27th!  Each tale uses humor and imagination to make kids think beyond the standard fairy tale stories they already know. They’re funny, but they also contain valuable lessons on such topics as bullying, kindness, independence, and taking a stand for what’s right. Download 'em fast.

About Me

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As a Caribbean primary school teacher, I share my unique classroom with the world through this blog. Readers step into my class through the pictures, articles and classroom samples of games and lessons used in my class. I have been teaching since 2005 at the std. 4 primary level in Trinidad and Tobago. I am particularly interested in sharing my own personal lesson plans, tests and activities. Teachers need to share ideas and support each other because in doing so, we help to educate our students and develop ourselves as teachers. Technology is ever evolving and we as teachers should get on board with it, collaborate and keep up to date with this new age that we live in. Our students belong to this technological era and we must embrace opportunities to learn from each other in this global community. I also love to express my creativity in the classroom. I am a bit of a craftster . So I'm always cutting, gluing or making something... a game, a chart, a learning center, etc. So, teachers and parents, feel free to stop by and see what's new at Nyla's Crafty Teaching!