Grade 5 - Kealy, Rochelle


Science Stuff (from Standards document):

Essential Questions for Unit:

Big Ideas/Enduring Understandings for Unit:

Performance Tasks for Unit:

    • Kealy Costigan
      Kealy Costigan

      Unit: Earth Systems 

      Science Stuff: The core ideas for this unit are Earth materials and systems, the roles of water in Earth's surface processes, and human impact on Earth systems. 

      Big Ideas: 

      1. Earths systems (atmosphere, geosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere) interact with each other. 

      2. Nearly all of Earth's water is located in the ocean. 

      3. Wind and clouds interact with landforms to affect weather patterns. 

      Essential Questions

      1. Where can you find water? 

      2.  Can the wind patterns explain storms and certain landscapes on Earth?

      3. What are Earths systems? 

      Performance Tasks: 

      1. Draw a diagram of something you did today that affected the earth spheres.

      2. Color code the world map identifying areas of high and low precipitation.

      3. Create a graph showing the distribution of water on Earth.

      4. Answer the prompt: What happens if we remove a sphere?



      Directions for Performance tasks: 

      For task 1: In your science notebook I want you to draw a diagram or picture of where you got your energy today at breakfast. Where did that thing get its energy from? Draw as far back in the exchange as you can. 

      For task 2: I will pass out the world map, using what we learned about the location of the equator, the location of the North and South Pole, and air pressure, color in the areas of highest precipitation in blue, and the lowest in red. 

      task 3: Using graph paper, and the following information, make a graph that shows the distribution of water on Earth. 

      Oceans, Seas, Bays: 96.5%

      Glaciers, ice caps, permanent snow: 1.74%

      Ground water: 1.713%

      Add the following together to make one column Lakes, rivers, swamps: .014

      atmosphere: .0002%

      biological water: .0001%


      task 4: Think about what would happen if one of the Earth's spheres were removed. How would that effect Earth's systems? Write your response in your science notebooks. For example, if the hydrosphere were removed how would that effect the biosphere?



      • Lilly Davis
        Lilly Davis

        For your big ideas, I think you can take out the one that states not all water is the same. Since you discuss water in the water cycle you can also discuss the different types of water within that section so you don't need a separate the two ideas. I really like your essential questions, specifically the third one. I think it is both broad and specific at the same time. And I like how your essential questions and big ideas relate to one another. 

        • Mikaela Fernandes-Dix
          Mikaela Fernandes-Dix

          I really liked your essential questions and thought they were at a 5th grade level. Even though I think your big ideas went great with your unit topic and questions I just thought you can get into a little more detail with them. I think your essential questions are good questions for students to really think about and want to learn about.

          • Kealy Costigan
            Kealy Costigan

            Thank you for the feedback! I agree Lilly- 2 and 3 could work together to include both ideas we want to convey. 

            • Rachel Scarano
              Rachel Scarano

              I agree with Lilly, you could totally talk about water being different when you discuss water cycles. Learning about where water comes from is so important, and I think your essential questions do a good job of representing that. Your performance tasks are awesome too!

              • Jacqueline Manzano
                Jacqueline Manzano

                 For your big ideas, I agree that the fourth question isn't as compelling as the first three, and can be combined with the water cycles. If you are going to narrow down the essential questions, I think the first, third, and fourth are most dynamic for the lesson.

                • Kayla Armstrong
                  Kayla Armstrong

                  I see a lot of commentary on the last big idea but I feel like it just needs to be reworded or elaborated. "There are different forms of water." Possibly? I think the water tornado is a great idea. I read in some lesson plans using glitter makes it more visible and can represent the debris picked up in an actual tornado. For the ph levels of water, you can get different forms of water from the ocean, tap, sparkling etc and maybe even have the kids dirty up some tap water with dirt, etc and use ph sheets and then certain colors tell you the certain ph balance.

                  • Samantha Kappmeier
                    Samantha Kappmeier

                    This unit is great and they build off of what the 4th grade Earth's systems, it is great because this unit is building off of what we have done which is something that reoccurs in the standards document. I think the essential questions and big ideas are really thought provoking especially for children of this age and even of older ages, as this is a 5th grade classroom and I am sure they will be continuing to learn about this throughout not only their elementary school education but higher education as well. 

                    • Gerald Ardito
                      Gerald Ardito

                      Kealy and Rochelle,

                      You have designed performance tasks that are a good fit for this unit.

                      I suggest that you review the instructions you wrote for your students from their perspective (as though you are one of them). Then ask yourself: "Could I be successful at this task following these directions?" This will give you some insight into what is missing.