Family Magazine

1L Loves Trash

By Tamarsb
As part of my Teaching Elementary Science class at Wheelock, we have to design and teach a mini-unit. Roughly 7-9 lessons on a topic that is part of the state and school curriculum.  We were encouraged to use a pre-designed unit and make it our own, I of course had to challenge myself and designed my own unit, pretty much from scratch. I designed a great unit on Trash, Decomposition, and Recycling. 1L Loves TrashOne of the big parts of the unit was learning about different types of materials that make up our trash and what happens to these materials. We sorted trash into different categories and it was amazing to see how much they already knew about trash!1L Loves Trash   We learned the terms biotic (breaks down) and abiotic (doesn't).  We observed an apple core and a yogurt cup decomposing (or lack their of for the yogurt cup) and discussed what was happening to these pieces of trash.
1L Loves Trash I loved, loved, loved watching my kiddos engaged in scientific thinking and talk. They loved laying on the rug observing the materials and writing in their science journals.  Their observations were so fantastic and deep, amazing to see and hear what six and seven year olds are thinking.
1L Loves Trash They were so excited to write their observations and some of the kids begged to keep working after science was finished. Now if that isn't great for a teacher's ego, I don't know what is!
1L Loves Trash The best yet, may be their spellings! I loved reading their science journals after each lesson, seeing their thought processes and spelling patterns!
1L Loves Trash To wrap up the unit, we briefly learned about recycling. We spent the last day of the unit taking recycled materials and reusing them, turning them into something different and useful! Oh man, did they knock my socks off!
1L Loves TrashThey created the most amazing treasures. Binoculars from paper towel tubes, yogurt cup maracas, doll houses from food boxes, puppets, and more! 1L Loves Trash They were so engaged they begged (begged!) to keep working into the much loved center time! Never in the 138 days of school have they asked to skip center time (free time for the last 30 minutes of the day).
1L Loves TrashThe best, truly, best part of the unit may have been one of my kids running up to me and saying, "this was the best science lesson, EVER!"
Ah, 1L thank you for teaching me just as much about trash as I taught you!
1L Loves Trash

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