As the school year is winding down, test prep is winding up! I've been racking my brain thinking of the most efficient way to get my 5th grade students ready for their science state test. A good chunk of my students joined after the beginning of the school year so I have no real way of knowing what they learned prior to coming to me. This, to me, means that I need to review everything in a substantial way. It needs to be an engaging review of each unit and should include just enough information to not overwhelm them... see the dilemma?
So I sat down and started writing out the most important things in each unit. This is what I came up with:
Of course we need more than just vocabulary. I want them to take notes, I want them to watch videos. I want to reach as many types of learners as I can and go at their pace (the constant struggle of a teacher, I know).
I am a paperless classroom with 1:1 technology, so my method would certainly involve tech. This is the first activity I made, for Ecosystems.
It is a little hard to see in the picture so I will explain how I included everything. I started with a box of "most important things." I color coded the vocabulary words. Then, to help them understand the topic thoroughly, I linked to 6 online interactive videos, games, activities, etc. Students can move through these interactives at their own pace. I expect my students to take notes and add to their "most important things." Then, the big vocabulary. I stopped myself at 6 terms per unit. It was difficult to choose 6 because there are dozens and of course they are all important. These are click and drag, so the students match up the term to the definition. Finally, an essential question to answer. Students type the response right on the screen. One unit done.
I continued like this for all 4 of the major North Carolina Science units for the year, but made sure to include information from all of the categories on the NC Science EOG.
My hope is that students will be engaged and interested in these activities (and learn without even realizing it). Would you link to use this resource, too? Click here to download it.
I've also started working on vocabulary pages, like this one:
I plan to use these for homework next school year. Each "week" has 3 vocabulary words, which means 4 nights of homework. We might do the definitions in class on Monday and then they only have 3 nights, but I'm not sure yet. What terms would you include in this?
Thanks for reading!