In this module, students build their literacy and citizenship skills as they engage in a study of tools and work. Students first learn about how tools help to do a job through informational text and hands-on experiences. They then extend their understanding of what it takes to do a job when they learn how the “habits of character” of initiative, collaboration, perseverance, and responsibility help them do work. Students also analyze how various characters from literary texts use these habits of character to help them make work easier and solve dilemmas. Finally, students take all they have learned about tools and work to create a “magnificent thing” that fulfills an authentic classroom need (e.g., pencil holder for classroom use). Students share, discuss, and reflect on their creation.
In this module, students build their literacy and science skills as they engage in a study of the sun, moon, and stars. Students begin their study through various narrative texts and begin to understand how and why the sun, moon, and stars inspire authors. Then students focus their study on the scientific concepts of observable patterns of the sun, moon, and stars. Students read informational texts and make observations and take notes in a sky notebook to learn about these patterns. Finally, students synthesize their learning from both their scientific study and study of literature to compose a narrative poem titled “What the Sun Sees.” Students then learn to give feedback to their peers and revise their writing.
In this module, students build their literacy skills as they engage in an in-depth study of birds’ bodies. The module focuses on the following big ideas: Animals have physical features that help them survive, and animals behave in ways that help them survive. Students begin their study by considering the guiding question: “What makes a bird a bird?” They then build research skills and background knowledge about birds through reading, talking, and representing (through scientific drawing, writing, role-play, music, and movement). Students participate in both whole group and small group research to learn more about the form and function of key bird parts: beaks and feathers. Students show their learning by writing an informational paragraph that describes how beaks or feathers help birds survive. Finally, students create Expert Bird Riddle cards and Expert Bird Scientific Drawing cards for a riddle matching game using facts from their research.
In this module, students continue to build on their knowledge of birds from Module 3 to deepen their literacy skills and explore the guiding question: “Why should we care about birds?” Students begin to consider this question by reading a variety of literary texts with characters that care for birds. They then learn about writing opinions as they investigate a specific bird, Pale Male, who built its nest in the heart of New York City. Students read about people’s differing opinions about this nest and then write their own opinions in response to the evidence they gather. Students also learn about some of the problems birds face more generally, and what humans can do to help them live and grow. They learn about the myriad ways birds are helpful to plants, animals, and people. For the performance task, students create a piece of artwork and writing that serves an authentic need in their school or local community: a Feathered Friend Saver. This performance task includes a high quality portrait of a local bird that is formatted to attach to a window. When displayed in a window, the portrait helps to prevent birds from flying into the window. Students also individually create a short piece of writing to teach the recipient of the Feathered Friend Saver facts about birds