This unit was developed for my first grade intervention class. It can be modified to work in Kindergarten or second grade as needed. I always begin the lesson with the word wall vocabulary words. They each have a corresponding picture to aid in meaning recognition. I find that this helps them remember what the words mean and they refer back to the word wall frequently to use the picture cue. Four mini books are included that break the unit up into four areas:
• Natural Resources
• Rocks and Soil
• Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
The mini books are assembled by cutting them out and stapling in page order. There are a few activity sheets that go along with the theme:
• Things I see outside Sheet
o Students work in partners or small groups
o They either observe out a classroom window or take them on a nature walk outside.
o They fill in the sheet noting the natural resources they observe
• Venn Diagram
o Students Work with a partner to compare and contrast their observations from the Things I see outside sheet.
• Cut and Paste Natural Resource Sheet
o Students cut out pictures and paste them to the appropriate label, living or non-living.
• Venn Diagram
o Student can work individually or in groups
o They compare and contrast oceans and lakes using the venn diagram.
• Natural Resource Writing
o Students write about how people use natural resources than draw a picture about it.
• Cloze Sheet.
o Students use word bank to fill in the blanks of a paragraph
• Rocks and Soil Writing
o Students Write about how we use rocks and soil and draw a picture to go with their writing.
• Pollution Drawing
o Students draw a picture of pollution and how it affects our natural resources. They write a sentence describing it.
• Reduce, Reuse, Recycle Cut and Paste.
o Students cut out pictures of reducing, reusing, and recycling and match it to the appropriate spot.
• Cause and Effect Sheets.
o Students fill in graphic organizers showing the effects of water pollution and the effects of reducing driving.
Included assessment can be given when unit is complete.
This unit is designed to take about eight 40 minute lessons with the assessment given on the 9th day. This can be modified depending on the level of your class. This will take me anywhere from 7-10 days depending on the day. I incorporate trade books from the public library as well as videos from Brain Pop and Discovery Education to enhance the concepts.
I developed this unit with the Common Core in mind. The importance of informational text and non-fiction reading is stressed within the Common Core through-out the grade levels. This presents material in a way that students do not seem threatened by, unlike a large text book. Also, writing is incorporated quite often as this is such an important and developing skill in first grade.
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