This 7-day project is a fun way for students to learn about the Earth-Sun relationship and the reasons why we experience seasons on Earth. Instead of passively consuming information about why we have seasons, students participating in this project will become members of a geo-hacking company that develops and presents plans to change the seasons on Earth by changing the Earth-Sun relationship. The idea of geo-hacking (changing the Earth or the Earth's processes through technology) is introduced in this unit as students implement skills from both engineering and science fields. Working together in small groups with specific, well-defined roles, students will figure out what they would need to change about the Earth-sun relationship to change the seasons on Earth. For example, some students choose to make it summer year-round in one part of the world, and have to explain how Earth looks and moves in relation to the sun after they do this. They evaluate benefits and consequences of both their plans and other companies plans. Students will:
1) Learn about the reasons why we have seasons
2) Predict how small changes in the Earth-Sun relationship affect seasons on Earth
3) Adopt specific roles in a mock company
4) Develop a plan and construct a model for changing the seasons on Earth
4) Create a video, brochure, and models to advertise their "company"
5) Think critically about classmates' company plans and decide if their plan to change the Earth-Sun relationship would indeed change the seasons in the way that they advertise
This unit is closely tied to both Next Generation Science Standards and Core Content Standards. A writing piece, with rubric, also ties ELA standards to this task.
In this 20-page unit, you will find:
- 7 days of lesson plans with standards and objectives included
- Exit slips for each day
- An entry slip
- Student packet of guidelines
- Student handouts
- 2 grading rubrics - one for a reflection writing piece and one for the group project
With the purchase of this product, you will have complete plans for teaching this engaging project on seasons. My 6th Grade students participated in this unit this year and they enjoyed it and produced high-level products.
Thank you for your interest in this product! I think you will find that it is a creative, effective, and fun way for your students to learn about the Earth-Sun relationship and seasons.
As a learning check for this concept, you might like:
Seasons Diagram Assessment and Rubric
To have students provide feedback on how their groups worked, you might try:
Teamwork Rating Scale