The Early Years: Teaching Life Cycles Throughout the Yearby: Peggy Ashbrook

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This column discusses resources and science topics related to students in grades preK to 2. This month’s article shows how to introduce children to animals and their offspring commonly seen in children’s literature.

  • Elementary
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  • on Tue Feb 05, 2019 1:30 PM

This article is extremely useful in helping identify and addressing misconceptions and missteps educators may have when teaching the life cycle. The primary example used when teaching life cycle to students is using a type of butterfly. However, as the article points out, not all organisms have life cycles similar to that of a butterfly. Instead, educators should incorporate examples from the environment around students in order to make sure they fully understand that each organism has a life cycle, but they aren’t identical. One thing I found very interesting was the section that stated, “understanding the relationship between adult and baby is more important than learning the actual terms for animals’ offspring” (Ashbrook). The article does a good job of explaining why multiple examples of different organisms, not just animals like cats and dogs, benefits students more than just demonstrating one type of life cycle. The is also an activity to complete at the end of the article and all of the necessary resources are provided. As a third grade teacher, I could see myself modifying the activity to incorporate more English language arts skills or even math skills in the form of graphing the different stages in organisms’’ life cycles.

Maria S
Maria S

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