This activity first asks students to brainstorm why scientists use specific lexicon, then features two activities to help them become more familiar with scientific language and word construction. First, students use a chart of word parts and their meanings to translate scientific words into English. Then, they are asked to translate nursery rhymes that have been written in scientific jargon.
Many students, especially those who are below grade level in reading, are automatically turned off from science because they are not used to scientific language. This activity helps them to realize that they may be able to understand scientific language after all.
I would recommend using this activity in the first or second week of classes. It is fun, so it will hopefully set a tone for your class that will continue throughout the year. It helps build community, because once students have an answer they just HAVE to share it with their friends. And it will help your students to not be intimidated when they come across words that they don't understand. ("You can read this! Remember when . . .")
It is appropriate for almost all grade levels. The description of the activity that the students get has a very low Flesch-Kinkade grade level (4.7). This could easily be made more challenging, but since the entire point of the activity is to encourage students to not be intimidated by science, I think the easy reading is appropriate. I have included three variations of the activity. In the first, the students have to come up with the answers on their own. In the second, the students have to come up with the answers on their own, but they get hints to help them with each one. In the third, students can see the answers and just have to decide which scientific phrase goes with each standard English phrase. I strongly recommend using either the first or second variation. Students will complain at first, but once one student figures out one phrase, the activity goes very smoothly.
If you buy the whole set of Biology A chapter 1, or the whole set of Biology A, DO NOT buy this, as you will be paying twice for the same material!
Author: Grace Pokela
Zip file contains PDF, to guarantee formatting and for easy printing, and word document, to make it easier to edit.
Document is 100% my original except for the word parts chart. Because I did not make it, I have included the entire chart with the free preview download.
Thank you for purchasing! Please give me a rating if you like my product.