My students need an leaf identification kit, kit tree ring, and an ipad to investigate and understand the environment around them.
"Take Nothing but Pictures, Leave Nothing but Footprints." Life Science this year will be focused on environmental understanding of the local community. I want my students to not just see a tree outside the window but truly appreciate the outside ecosystem.
When I tell others where I teach, most people around the city ask why I teach there.
The neighborhood is considered one of the worst and forgotten neighborhoods in piedmont Georgia. However, for my students specifically, this is a misconception. The school is Title I, with the majority Black and Hispanic, although this information I don't consider when prepping my lessons. I set high standards for my students pushing them to their best potential. The school district teaches to the CRCT, however I use rigor set by other tests such as the New York Regents exam to raise the bar. My students are hardworking and excited to learn. Provide an interactive opportunity and they will take ownership of their learning.
This year in life science we will be focusing on the local environment. I have requested 3 items: a leaf identification kit, a tree ring kit, and an Ipad Mini. The leaf identification kit will be crucial for having students being able to identify trees and using critical thinking skills. The tree ring kit will help students not only figure out the age of the tree but which years the tree may have faced drought, fire, or abundance in nutrients. The final is the Ipad Mini which will be used for photography and several free apps including: Leafsnap (tree ID), Fotopedia Wild Friends (photo gallery of wildlife), Green Planet 4 Kids (how to be ecofriendly), and Language Central for Science (vocab terms in game experience). The use of the Ipad will be crucial to some students who have limited access to technology, including not having a computer at home or a cell phone.
My goal is to utilize these resources for students to gain an appreciation and excitement to continue learning about their environment.
For short term impact, students will practice critical thinking skills, learn to keep a field book, practice skills many environmentalists currently use, and use technology that other students use in more affluent areas. These students are the future stewards for our environment, and need positive and rewarding experiences to want to keep it sustainable.
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