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Documenting Life Cycles

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Keywords: Life Cycles, Writing Skills
Subject(s): Art, Life Science, Writing, Music, Earth Science, Photography, English/Language Arts, Grammar, Science, Math
Grades 2 through 3
NETS-S Standard:
  • Creativity and Innovation
  • Communication and Collaboration
  • Research and Information Fluency
  • Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making
View Full Text of Standards
School: Kolb Elementary School, Dublin, CA
Planned By: Jennifer Moirao
Original Author: Jennifer Moirao, Dublin
Grade: 2/3- Life Cycles
Standards Covered:
Grade 2: -Plants and animals have predictable life cycles
- Scientific progress is made by asking meaningful questions and conducting careful investigations. As a basis for understanding this concept and addressing the content in the other three strands, students should develop their own questions and perform investigations.
- Students write clear and coherent sentences and paragraphs that develop a central idea. Their writing shows they consider the audience and purpose. Students progress through the stages of the writing process
Grade 3
- Adaptations in physical structure or behavior may improve an organismís chance for survival.
- Students write compositions that describe and explain familiar objects, events, and
experiences. Student writing demonstrates a command of standard American English
and the drafting, research, and organizational strategies

Objectives: Students will be able to understand a plants life cycle.
Students will be able to create poems and stories
Students will be able to use pictures they have taken to create a life cycle/timeline

Each student will partner up. They will choose a plant that they can monitor. The students will begin by researching the plant. They need to find its origins, climate that it grows best in, how to care for the plant, and any other detail they might need to make the plant live a healthy life. The students will be creating poems, using science skills, art, and math to document the plants life.
Once they feel they can make the plant grow successfully they will be given 2 seeds. One seed will be a control and the other will be the test subject. The students have to create a climate that will be successful for the plant to grow. There other plant will be used to experiment on different ways the plant may grow. They can choose how much water will be given to this plant (it must stay consistent or have a pattern), they also must choose some other element that can help the plant grow (i.e. the plant can listen to music, it can be places outside, it can be given different temperatures of water). The students will document there plants each day with the use of a pre made spreadsheet on the computer. They will document height, new growth, and color changes. Everyday they must take a picture and describe any change the plant might have. After 1 month of the documentation and records they will type up what worked and what didnít work and why they feel some things worked and did not work. With the pictures they take, the students must create a timeline of the plant with captions on what they were doing to the plant and compare it to the control.
They must bring the plants to life, they will create poems, stories, and adventures that there plant can go on. Each pair of students will take everything they have done and make a book. The book must include pictures of each event and a picture collage of the plants life. The final project will be presented to the class.

Materials needed: A computer
Standard Digital Camera Lab
Cross-Curriculum Ideas
The students will be typing up poems and stories. They will also be using math to calculate the height of the plants from day to day.
Materials: Digital Cameras, Point and Shoot, Camera Bags, Flash/USB Drives, Tripods, Batteries, Math, Spreadsheet, Slideshow
Other Items: 1 Standard Digital Camera Lab, $2889 each, total of $2889.00