General Science and Teaching

Lesson Ideas (Life Cycle)

Good evening,  My name is Henry Campos, I am currently in my Student Teaching 1 semester. I am in a 3rd grade ESL classroom. My mentor teacher teaches Math, Science, and Social studies. Due to different factors, Science and Social Studies are not the top priority for the teachers I feel that all of the core subjects should be important, and be taught with an equal importance.  For my Science method class we he to prepare a 5E Science lesson. I have to do it about an organisms life cycle. I am currently thinking of doing it about the life cycle of a butterfly. I wanted to get some ideas of how I could make the lesson plan interactive and educational. At the moment I want to start my lesson with a slide show of different living organisms such as frogs, plants, and butterflies as my Engagement.  I have other stuff planned out, but would love to hear any suggestions of a lesson topic for a life cycle lesson. in addition, I would like to hear what you as a teacher do to teach the life cycle of an organism.  Thank you. 

Henry Campos
Henry Campos
575 Activity Points

Hi Henry! I am also a first semester student teacher, and also working on a butterfly lesson plan for my science methods class. Some things I plan to incorporate in my lesson to make it fun an interactive is to have children create a "Caterpillar Craft" to reinforce their understanding on the stages of metamorphosis. However, this may be aimed closer to 2nd grade than 3rd. Another thing I thought of is to have them "act out" the stages of metamorphosis, like a play. My students learned about readers' theatre so this would be a great way to incorporate their reading curriculum. I do plan on having my students think about other life cycles they may know about, such as frogs and of course humans. I want to make sure my students can draw connections to the real world. In order to do this, I plan on explaining the connections that we as humans have in our life cycle to those of a butterfly. (A caterpillar grows when it is in the egg stage- we grow in our mothers bellies for 9 months.) These are just some things I plan to use in my lesson to make it interactive and effective. I hope it helps!

Rachel Steadman
Rachel Steadman
200 Activity Points

Hi Henry! One of the things I did in my special needs science classroom was to raise brine shrimp. Back in the 50's and 60's, you could send for "Sea Monkeys" advertised in comic books and raise them. The "Sea Monkeys" were actually brine shrimp cysts (eggs). I did a workshop at the Hogle Zoo in Utah and one of the door prizes I won was a coffee can full of these unhatched cysts. One of the experiments we did was to make our own sea water with aquarium salt. Each student had a small petri dish which they used to put their sea water in. The next part was simple. We just put the cysts in the water and in less than a week had a colony of "sea monkeys." It was fun to document the creatures in a lab book using a microscope and having the students draw what they observed. The brine shrimp go through various stages in their life cycle which the kids can identify. After the shrimp grow big enough, you can feed them to a classroom fish to show the food chain or move on to the life cycle of another animal in the food chain.

http://learn.genetics.utah.edu/content/gsl/foodweb/brine_shrimp/
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brine_shrimp
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vc9ZuzCSepQ

James Johnson
James Johnson
93810 Activity Points

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