Science Text: Decoding our DNA: Craig Venter VS the Human Genome Project

51qdnxzn2kl-_sx336_bo1204203200_Ballen, K. G. (2013). Decoding our DNA: Craig Venter vs the Human Genome Project. Minneapolis. Twenty-First Century Books.

Plot: Decoding our DNA gives readers a cursory overview of genetics, DNA and genome sequencing. It then takes the reader on a wild goose chase as Craig Venter and The Human Genome Project race to be the first to map human DNA. This tense and high stakes competition led the two organizations to sequence human DNA years before they had imagined. Nonetheless, decoding the complexities of human DNA ended up being a highly political and highly expensive endeavor.

Recommendation: This book is comprehensive and thoroughly explains the beginnings of genome sequencing and how human DNA was finally decoded. With all thoroughness aside, however, I did not like this book. To me, it was written like a textbook and did not do much to draw the reader in. Although the race between Venter and The Human Project could have been in an interesting narrative style, the author chose not to go this route. Instead, the reader is left with stale dry text.

Topic: Science- Genetics

Quantitative Reading Level: Lexile Measure: 1070; Grade Level Equivalent: 7-12; Pages: 64

Qualitative Reading Analysis:

Organization/Format: The book is divided into 6 chapters. Relevant quotes as well as notable individuals in the field are highlighted throughout the book. Back matter includes a glossary, index, timeline, bibliography and source notes.

Language Demands: There are a lot of complex science terms in the text. Teachers should go over the terms in the glossary with the students before reading the book with them.

Knowledge Demands: Students should know about genetics and The Human Genome Project before reading this book. The book is a difficult read if students do not have some background knowledge of the subject.

Meaning/Purpose: The purpose of this book is to teach the readers about the race to decode human DNA.

Content/Subject Area & Standards:

9-10 ELA: (Missouri Learning Standards)

1 Comprehend and Interpret Texts (Approaching Texts as a Reader)-

A. Draw conclusions, infer and analyze by citing relevant and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.

B. Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in the text, including figurative, connotative, and content-specific meanings using context, affixes, or reference materials.

C. Interpret visual elements of a text including those from different media and draw conclusions from them (when applicable).

High School Science: (Missouri Learning Standards)

LS3 – Heredity: Inheritance and Variation of Traits-

9-12-LS 3-1 Develop and use models to clarify relationships about how DNA in the form of chromosomes is passed from parents to offspring through the processes of meiosis and fertilization in sexual reproduction.

9-12-LS3- 4 Make and defend a claim that inheritable genetic variations may result from: (1) new genetic combinations through meiosis, (2) mutations occurring during replication, and/or (3) mutations caused by environmental factors. [Clarification Statement: Emphasis is on using data to support arguments for the way variation occurs.]

Curriculum Suggestions: 

  1. Check out this cool activity: Students use edible materials to create a model of a double helix.
  2. In this activity, students will map out the DNA of a dog.

Links to Supporting Content:

DNA from the Beginning– This is a comprehensive site about genetics from Mendel’s findings to present day. It is user-friendly and explains heredity in laymen’s terms.

Genetic Education Resources for Teachers-This site has many resources for teachers to use for students. Includes games, PowerPoint slides, lesson plans and helpful links.

 

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Historical Fiction: Rush Revere and the Brave Pilgrims

514izsxq1ul-_sx328_bo1204203200_Limbaugh, R. (2013). Rush Revere and the brave Pilgrims. New York. Threshold Editions.

Plot:

Join substitute teacher Rush Revere and his talking horse, Liberty, as they time travel and teach the students about American History. Rush Revere and the Brave Pilgrims is the first book in Limbaugh’s Time Travel Adventures with Exceptional Americans series. Readers will be swept back in time to the Mayflower voyage and landing. They will then learn about some of the hardships the Pilgrims endured along with the signing of the Mayflower Compact. They will also learn about the Pilgrim’s blossoming friendship with Squanto and the Native Americans. Finally, they will read about the Pilgrim’s resourcefulness and how this contributed to the first Thanksgiving.

Recommendation:

Rush Revere and the Brave Pilgrims provides students a fun way to learn about the Pilgrims and their voyage as well as their settlement in America. The fact that the book won the Children’s Choice Book Award shows that it is a book that many children would enjoy. Personally, I did not like all the banter  that went on between Rush Revere and his horse, but I think children will like this part of the story.

Nonetheless, the book provides many details that are not normally taught in school. For example, I learned that the Pilgrims had planned to take two ships to America, but one was not strong enough to make the voyage.  I would recommend this book for fourth graders with guidance and fifth to sixth graders without guidance.

Topics: 

American History- Pilgrims, Thanksgiving, Native Americans

Series:

Rush Revere and the Brave Pilgrims is part of a book series called Time Travel Adventures with Exceptional Americans. Other books in the series include Rush Revere and the First Patriots, Rush Revere and the American Revolution, Rush Revere and the Star Spangled Banner and Rush Revere and the Presidency.

Award:

2014 Children’s Choice Book Award- “Author of the Year”

Quantitative Reading Level: 

Lexile Measure: 740; Grade Level Equivalent: 4-5; Pages: 224

Qualitative Reading Analysis:

Organization/Format: The book is divided into ten chapters. It also includes a diagram of the Mayflower, copy of the Mayflower Compact as well as paintings and drawings that depict the time period. Pictures of Rush Revere and his horse are sprinkled throughout the book. Although there is plenty of text it is broken up in segments by lots of visuals.

Language Demands: The language is fairly simple. The historical figures do not talk in the old English style that was commonplace in the 1600s.

Knowledge Demands: It would be helpful for the students to know why the Pilgrims decided to risk their lives and sail to America.

Meaning/Purpose: The purpose of this book is to show an in-depth account of the Pilgrims’ voyage to America as well as the steps they took to establish Plymouth Colony.

Content/Subject Area & Standards:

Fourth Grade ELA: (Missouri Learning Standards)

2 Develop and apply skills and strategies to comprehend, analyze and evaluate fiction, poetry and drama from a variety of cultures and times. Read, infer, analyze, and draw conclusions to: a. summarize and sequence the events/plot, and explain how past events impact future events, and identify the theme b. describe the personality traits of characters from the thoughts, words, and actions c. describe the interaction of characters, including relationships and how they change d. compare and contrast the adventures or exploits of characters and their roles e. compare and contrast the point of view from which stories are narrated, explain whether the narrator or speaker of a story is first or third person

Fourth Grade Social Studies: (Missouri Learning Standards)

1. Knowledge of the principles expressed in documents shaping constitutional democracy in the United States E. Describe the character traits and civic attitudes of historically significant individuals in American history prior to  1800

3a. Knowledge of continuity and change in the history of Missouri and the United States. A. Describe the discovery, exploration and early settlement of America by Europeans prior to 1800. B. Examine cultural interactions and conflicts among Native Americans, Immigrants from Europe, and enslaved and free Africans and African Americans prior to 1800.

5. Knowledge of major elements of geographical study and analysis and their relationship to changes in society and the environment. A. Construct and interpret historical and current maps. B. Analyze how people are affected by, depend on, adapt to and change their physical environments in the past and in the present.

6. Knowledge of relationships of the individual and groups to institutions and cultural traditions. D. Analyze the preservation of cultural life, celebrations, traditions, and commemorations over time.

Curriculum Suggestions: 

  1. Have students research the first Thanksgiving. Next, have students dress up as Pilgrims and Native Americans. Research the food that was at the first feast. Try to replicate it and enjoy the meal!
  2. Samoset was a leader of the Pemaquid indian tribe. He greeted the Pilgrims shortly after they landed at Plymouth. Research the indian tribes the Pilgrims came in contact with. How were the tribes alike? How were they different?

Links to Supporting Content:

Pilgrims, the Mayflower Compact and Thanksgiving Lesson Plan

Plimoth Plantation: Just for Kids

 

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Narrative Nonfiction: Stories of Titanic’s Second Class

51qzcw-ynul-_sx359_bo1204203200_Bailey, R. A. (2016). Stories of Titanic’s second class. Mankato, MN. The Child’s World.

Plot: Stories of Titanic’s Second Class show readers the real account of four second class passengers who set sail on the infamous Titanic. From the first day they boarded, to the day they escaped the sinking ship and were rescued by the Carpathia, this book gives a detailed account of their time on the large boat. Also included in this informational text are source notes, a glossary, relevant photographs and a resources section.

Recommendation: Since I wrote Stories of Titanic’s Second Class, I may be somewhat biased. Regardless, I believe the book is an excellent informational text. It gives true accounts of second class Titanic survivors. Although nonfiction, it is written like a story and draws the reader into the lives of four individuals who survived the catastrophe. This book is appropriate for third grade with teacher guidance. Fourth graders could read the book independently.

Topics: History- Titanic; Science & Engineering- boats

Series:

Stories of Titanic’s Second Class is part of a book series called Titanic Stories. Other books in the series include: Stories of Titanic’s Children, Stories of Titanic’s Crew, Stories of Titanic’s First Class, Stories of Titanic’s Third Class and The Story of Titanic’s Chairman Ismay.

Quantitative Reading Level: 

Lexile Measure: 590; Grade Level Equivalent: 3-4; Pages: 29

Qualitative Reading Analysis:

Organization/Format: The book is divided into four chapters. It also includes a glossary, source notes, a resources section and an index. Historical photographs with captions are sprinkled throughout.

Language Demands: The language is fairly simple. Words students may not know are bolded. These words are defined in the glossary at the back of the book.

Knowledge Demands: A basic knowledge of the Titanic would be helpful, but is not necessary.

Meaning/Purpose: The purpose of this book is to show the plight of second class passengers on the Titanic. Of note is that only 14 of 168 second class men survived the sinking of the Titanic.

Content/Subject Area & Standards:

Third Grade ELA (Missouri Learning Standards)

1. Develop and apply skills to the reading process. B.Develop an understanding of vocabulary by: a. decoding and identifying the meaning of common prefixes and suffixes and knowing how they change the meaning of root words b. using sentence level context to determine the relevant meaning of unfamiliar words or distinguish among multiple meaning words c. using homographs, and homophones d. distinguishing the literal and nonliteral meanings of words and phrases in context e. determining the meaning of the new word formed when a known affix is added to a known base word. f. using a dictionary or a glossary to determine the meanings, syllabications, and pronunciation of unknown words g. discussing analogies h. determining the meaning of the author’s use of similes and metaphors to produce imagery i. using conversational, general academic, and domain-specific words and phrases.

3. Develop and apply skills and strategies to comprehend, analyze and evaluate nonfiction (e.g. narrative, information/explanatory, opinion, persuasive, argumentative) from a variety of cultures and times. C. Read, infer and draw conclusions to: a. describe relationships among events, ideas, concepts, and cause and effect in texts b. explain the relationship between problems and solutions c. use information gained from illustrations and words to demonstrate understanding of the text d. explain the author’s purpose e. compare and contrast the most important points and key details presented in texts on the same topic

Third Grade Social Studies(Missouri Learning Standards)

5. Knowledge of major elements of geographical study and analysis and their relationship to changes in society and the environment. E. Describe how changes in communication and transportation technologies affect people’s lives.

7. Knowledge of the use of tools of social science inquiry. B.With guidance and support, use visual tools and informational texts to interpret, draw conclusions, make predictions, and communicate information and ideas.

Curriculum Suggestions: 

1. After reading Stories of Titanic’s Second Class, read Stories of Titanic’s Third Class and Stories of Titanic’s First Class. Use a Venn Diagram to compare and contrast passengers’ experiences on the Titanic.

2. Talk to the students about how the iceberg ripped Titanic’s hull. Because of this, water poured in and filled up the ship. Illustrate this by, giving students squares of aluminum foil. Tell them to create a boat out of the foil. Have them place their boats in a tub of water. Next, have them predict how many pennies they will have to add to their boats before they sink. Tell the students to add one penny to their boats at a time. Record results.

Links to Supporting Content:

Encyclopedia Titanica

Titanic Lesson Plan

Titanic Videos

Titanica

 

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History Picture Book: The House That George Built

house-that-george-built-hires-4Slade, S. & Bond, E. (2012). The House That George Built. Watertown, MA. Charlsbridge.

Plot: Most elementary students learn that George Washington was the first president of the United States, but how many of them know that George was responsible for building the White House? This historical picture book, which has a cumulative tale woven throughout, tells how George was involved in all aspects of the house. From finding a location, to picking out an architect, to selecting materials, George did it all. Unfortunately, his term as president was up before the house was completed so he was the only president who did not get to live in this impressive home.

Recommendation: I would recommend this book to use with students. It gives a general overview of how the White House came to be and tells of all the work that was involved. Very young students might enjoy just having the cumulative tale read to them, whereas older students would benefit from reading the book independently or with some teacher guidance.

Topics: History- George Washington, White House, Presidents; Science & Fine Arts- Architecture

Awards:

A Junior Library Guild Selection

Bank Street’s Best Children’s Books of the Year

Quantitative Reading Level: 

Lexile Measure: 890; Grade Level Equivalent: 5-6; Pages: 32

Qualitative Reading Analysis:

Organization/Format: This book, which has beautiful water-color illustrations, starts out with a short introduction. Then, it explains all the details that George Washington had to oversee in order for the White House to be built. There are two separate texts that are used in the story. There is the informative text written in small font and there is the cumulative tale, written in large bolded font. After the story ends, the author gives information about the history of the white house. She also includes an extensive resources section.

Language Demands: Younger readers may need help with some more complicated words such as outrageous, bejeweled, stately, majestic, magnificent and quarries. 

Knowledge Demands: It would be helpful for students to have very basic knowledge of George Washington and the White House.  It might also be helpful to explain the different parts of the building process while reading to the students.

Meaning/Purpose: The purpose of this book is to show that hard work pays off. George Washington had a vision and a goal. With hard work and dedication, he completed the goal. It took over 8 years for the White House to be completed.

Content/Subject Area & Standards:

Fourth Grade ELA (Missouri Learning Standards)

2 Develop and apply skills and strategies to comprehend, analyze and evaluate fiction, poetry and drama from a variety of cultures and times. Read, infer and draw conclusions to: a. explain structural elements of poetry.

Fourth Grade Social Studies(Missouri Learning Standards)

1. Knowledge of the principles expressed in documents shaping constitutional democracy in the United States. E. Knowledge of continuity and change in the history of Missouri and the United States. Identify and describe the contributions of historically significant individuals to America and the United States prior to c. 1800. (See teacher resources for illustrative examples). F. Recognize and explain the significance of national symbols associated with historical events and time periods being studied.

Curriculum Suggestions: A cumulative tale is weaved into The House That George Built. Consider reading the cumulative tale first before reading the rest of the story. Then, have the students find and study other cumulative tales. Next, have students create their own cumulative tales. Finally, after studying the white house, have the students investigate other national symbols such as the Washington Monument and the Statue of Liberty.

Links to Supporting Content:

Reader’s Theater

Teacher’s Guide: The House That George Built

The White House: Interactive Tour

 

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Science Picture Book: Bridges Go From Here to There

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Wilson, F. (1993). Bridges go from here to there. Washington D.C. The Preservation Press.

Plot: Why are arches used in some bridges? What is a truss? Why does a feather float to the ground when it’s dropped and why does an elephant go splat? These are some of the questions that are answered in Bridges Go From Here to There. Author Forest Wilson teaches about the concept of bridge building in a most interesting and comical way. He uses such animals as pigs, elephants and dogs to get his point across. Here is an example, “There are many different ways to fix bent elephants and make bridges longer than stone arches and straight logs. Some takeaways from Wilson’s book are that gravity, mass and weight help bridges work and towers, cables and trusses strengthen bridges. After reading this book, children and adults alike will never look at bridges the same way again.

Recommendation: This book is a gem! It is a great source for teaching some basic engineering principles. The simple, black and white illustrations complement the text nicely.  Although it is a picture book, I would recommend it for whole class instruction for 4th through 6th graders.

Topics: Science-engineering, bridges, gravity

Quantitative Reading Level: 

ATOS Level: 6.0; Grade Level Equivalent: 4-5; 80 page

Qualitative Reading Analysis:

Organization/Format: Don’t let the 80 pages of this book fool you! Although the concepts in this book are complicated, they are spread out in such a way as to not confuse the reader. The pages are heavily illustrated with black ink drawings.  With the exception of the introduction, the pages only have a partial or one sentence on them. Furthermore, many pages contain  illustrations alone.

Language Demands: There are quite a few engineering terms in this book such as gravity, cantilever, truss, suspension, mass, compression, tension, etc. Students should be introduced to these words before the book is read to them.

Knowledge Demands: A general overview of bridges would be helpful, but it is not necessary. The author does an excellent job of explaining why certain types of bridges are needed.

Meaning/Purpose: The purpose of this book is to teach readers about the different types of bridges. It also explains why various bridges are constructed.

Content/Subject Area & Standards:

Fifth Grade ELA (Missouri Learning Standards)

3. Develop and apply skills and strategies to comprehend, analyze and evaluate nonfiction (e.g., narrative, information/explanatory, opinion, persuasive, argumentative) from a variety of cultures and times. Read, infer and draw conclusions to: a. use multiple text features and graphics to locate information and gain an overview of the contents of text information b. interpret details from procedural text to complete a task, solve a problem, or perform an action c. interpret factual or quantitative information

Fifth Grade Science(Missouri Learning Standards)

PS2 – Motion and Stability: Forces and Interactions-Support an argument that the gravitational force exerted by Earth on objects is directed toward the planet’s center. [Clarification Statement: “Down” is a local description of the direction that points toward the center of the spherical Earth.]

ETS1 – Engineering Design-Generate and compare multiple possible solutions to a problem based on how well each is likely to meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.

Curriculum Suggestions: Have students locate and review several resources about bridge building. Next, have a friendly class competition. Provide popsicle sticks, glue, tagboard and rubber bands. Have students create bridges from these materials. Add weight such as pennies to each of the bridges. See whose bridge holds the most weight! Another idea is to research historical bridges such as London Bridge. Have students build a model of the bridge and give a class presentation about its history.

Links to Supporting Content:

Bridge Building Lesson Plans

Bridge Building Video

Bridge Resources for Kids

 

 

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Math Picture Book: Place Value

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Adler, D. & Miller E. (2016). Place Value. New York. Holiday House.

Plot: Looking for a creative way to teach children about place value? David Adler’s book, Place Value is the book you need. Through a charming troop of monkeys who make the world’s largest banana cupcake, kids learn that number order is important. For example, there is a big difference between 216 and 621 eggs. Place value lets readers know when numbers are in the ones, tens, and hundreds place. Adler is not shy about exposing kids to large numbers.   In fact, he explains that the colossal cupcake has three hundred twenty nine trillion sprinkles!  Furthermore, he introduces children to decimals, money, and number systems and how they are all related to place value.  This book should be on every elementary classroom teacher’s bookshelf.

Recommendation: I would highly recommend this book for whole class instruction for students in grades 1 to 3.The illustrations are humorous and add to the overall content of the text.  The book could also could be read independently by upper elementary aged students who are having trouble understanding place value particularly when decimals are involved.

Topics: Math- place value, decimals, number systems, money

Quantitative Reading Level: 

Lexile Measure: 610; Grade Level Equivalent: 3-4 Pages: 29

Qualitative Reading Analysis:

Organization/Format: This 29 page book is beautifully illustrated with darling monkeys throughout. The text is standard. Certain words are bolded in black or red to teach a certain concept. Numbers are placed in boxed in charts to reinforce what is written about place value. A recipe for a “Colossal Banana Cupcake” is placed on some of the pages. This helps the reader to know what part of the recipe the monkeys are working on. My only complaint is that this should be on every page so the reader will always know what ingredient the monkeys are using.

Language Demands: There is a lot of math terminology in this book. Digits, place value, decimal point, tenths, number systems and a trillion are some of the examples.

Knowledge Demands: Knowledge of place value would be helpful, but not necessary. The author does a very good job teaching this concept.

Meaning/Purpose: The title of this book says it all. Learning place value can be a tricky topic for many kids. David Adler days a superb of making sense of this otherwise difficult subject.

Content/Subject Area & Standards:

Second Grade ELA (Missouri Learning Standards)

3. Develop and apply skills and strategies to comprehend, analyze and evaluate nonfiction (e.g., narrative, information/explanatory, opinion, persuasive, argumentative) from a variety of cultures and times. A. Read, infer and draw conclusions to: a. identify the main idea of sections of text and distinguish it from the topic b. demonstrate understanding by locating facts to answer and/or ask questions c. use text features to locate specific information d. explain common graphic features to assist in the interpretation of text e. follow written multi-step directions f. describe connections between, and state the order of, the events or ideas.

Second Grade Math(Missouri Learning Standards)

A. Understand place value of three digit numbers. 1. Understand three-digit numbers are composed of hundreds, tens and ones. 2. Understand that 100 can be thought of as 10 tens – called a “hundred”.  4. Read and write numbers to 1000 using number names, base-ten numerals and expanded form.

Curriculum Suggestions: Use Place Value as an introduction to place value.  After reading the book, have kids write and illustrate their own colossal recipes. For example, a child’s recipe may  say that colossal cookies contain 1500 chocolate chips. Then, he or she will make up a chart and place the 1 in the thousands place, the 5 in the hundreds place and so on.

Links to Supporting Content:

Place Value Games

Place Value Lesson Plan

Place Value Printables

 

 

 

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Elementary Poetry Book: Lizards, Frogs, and Polliwogs

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Florian, D. (2001). Lizards, frogs and polliwogs. New York: Scholastic.

Plot: Contained in this whimsical book are Douglas Florian’s 21 poems about various reptiles and amphibians.  Children will discover some interesting facts about these creatures. They will also have their funny bones tickled.  The author’s  wit shines through the poems and illustrations alike. For example, in one poem about a newt, the newt is pictured wearing an orange suit while he is drinking coffee and reading the “Newt News”. Another poem about crocodiles and alligators states: The crocodile’s smile is wide/Enough to stuff a pig inside./But did you know that alligators/Sometimes swallow second graders? Florian’s collection of poems will not disappoint. It will keep kids entertained, while learning something new.

Recommendation: I recommend this book for students in grades K-5. It is a great book to use for a wide range of readers. Younger readers could focus on the use of rhyme whereas older readers could focus on word choice and the element of humor.

Topics: ELA-poetry, Science-biology, Art-painting, collage

Awards:  Bulletin Blue Ribbon Book; Gryphon Award-winner

Quantitative Reading Level: 

Lexile Measure: NA;  ATOS Reading Level: 2.8; Pages: 47

Qualitative Reading Analysis:

Organization/Format: This 45 page book includes a table of contents. There are 21 poems in the collection. Each page spread has a picture of an amphibian on one side and the poem on the other side. Illustrations are a mixture of watercolors and collage. Each poems has a bolded title. The font for the titles are “artsy” and not standard. The font for the poems is standard. However, some of the text is typed in the shape of a square, circle or wavy lines.

Language Demands: The language demands for this book are fairly simple. Younger students may need teacher guidance though. There are some words in the text that younger readers may not be familiar with such as chameleon, turquoise, mortise and composition.  Furthermore, Florian is creative with his words and invents such words as Octobra, frogsicle and bogsicle.

Knowledge Demands: Knowledge of amphibians and reptiles would be helpful, but not necessary. I believe the children would understand the humor in the poems more if they had some background knowledge of these creatures.

Meaning/Purpose: Reptiles and amphibans are the obvious themes of this book, but I also think young children will learn that informational texts can be silly and fun. The author does a wonderful job of getting this message across.

Content/Subject Area & Standards:

Third Grade ELA (Missouri Learning Standards)

Develop and demonstrate reading skills in response to text by: a. explain how specific aspects of a text’s illustrations contribute to what is conveyed by the words in a story b. draw conclusions and support with textual evidence c. summarizing a story’s beginning, middle, and determining their central message, lesson or moral d. monitoring comprehension and making corrections and adjustments when understanding breaks down

Third Grade Science(Missouri Learning Standards)

3.LS3.B Use evidence to construct an explanation for how the variations in characteristics among individuals of the same species may provide advantages in surviving and finding mates. [Clarification Statement: Examples of cause and effect relationships could be plants that have larger thorns than other plants may be less likely to be eaten by predators; and, animals that have better camouflage coloration than other animals may be more likely to survive and therefore more likely to leave offspring.]

3.LS3.C Construct an argument with evidence that in a particular ecosystem some organisms — based on structural adaptations or behaviors — can survive well, some survive less well, and some cannot. [Clarification Statement: Examples of evidence could include needs and characteristics of the organisms and habitats involved. The organisms and their habitat make up a system in which the parts depend on each other.

Third Grade Visual Arts: (Show-Me Standards)

1. Investigate the nature of art and discuss responses to artworks. Grade 3: Compare different responses students may have to the same artwork.

Curriculum Suggestions: Have students compare and contrast the illustrations in the book to actual photographs of the animals. What characteristics of the animals are stressed in the illustrations?  Which are not? Do some more research to determine how these characteristics such as camouflage or scaly skin may help an animal to survive in its habitat. Study how collage is used to make the illustrations. Study other children’s picture book illustrators, such as Eric Carle, who use collage in their illustrations. Wrap up the collage analysis by having the students  make their own collages.

Links to Supporting Content:

National Geographic Kids: Amphibians

National Geographic Kids:Reptiles

Poems Kids Like

Collage Art Projects

Douglas Florian Interview

 

 

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