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Who Ate Archy the Anchovy

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Keywords: Flip Video,
Subject(s): Video, Technology, Life Science, Drama
Grades 4 through 6
NETS-S Standard:
  • Creativity and Innovation
  • Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making
  • Technology Operations and Concepts
View Full Text of Standards
School: Alexander Twilight, Sacramento, CA , CA
Planned By: Lisa Nguyen
Original Author: Lisa Nguyen, Sacramento
Author: Lisa Nguyen

Lesson Plan Title: Who Ate Archy the Anchovy?
Subject: Science
Grade Level: 4th/6th Science
Time Frame: 2 days: Day 1- 30-40 minutes for partners to practice parts and film scenes using flip cams, Day 2- 45 minutes to complete problem solving activity in groups during centers time.


4th Grade Science
2. All organisms need energy and matter to live and grow. As a basis for understanding this concept:
a. Students know plants are the primary source of matter and energy entering
most food chains.
b. Students know producers and consumers (herbivores, carnivores, omnivores, and decomposers) are related in food chains and food webs and may compete with each other for resources in an ecosystem.

6th Grade Ecology (Life Sciences)
5. Organisms in ecosystems exchange energy and nutrients among themselves and with the environment. As a basis for understanding this concept:
b. Students know matter is transferred over time from one organism to others in the food web and between organisms and the physical environment.

1. Students will use flip cams to film clues for part of a marine food chain problem solving activity.
2. Students will use clues in an interactive PowerPoint to create a marine food chain by actively participating in a problem solving activity with peers.

Materials: Computers, flip cams, printer, pencil, paper.

Lesson activity:

Open: (10 minutes) Inform students that the purpose of this activity is to use technology to reinforce information on food chains in ecosystems. They will film clues in partner groups using flip cams which will then be put together into a PowerPoint to be solved. In groups, they will complete an activity through the interactive power point available in stations during centers time. Groups of six students, each split into three pairs will work together to figure out what member of the marine food chain ate Archy the Anchovy.

Body: (30 minutes)

Day 1: Students will be assigned a different member of the marine food chain. They will already have researched and studied about these animals in the marine food chain. In partners, students will write and script their clue, practice and then film the clue to be loaded onto the PowerPoint. Once the teacher receives all flip cam clips, the teacher will compile the videos to create an interactive PowerPoint presentation.

Day 2: During centers time students will alternate through different stations. At the computer station, students will be guided through the interactive PowerPoint by hyperlinks and be required to properly use the sound links and video links to find the necessary clues to solve the mystery of who ate Archy the Anchovy. After watching all of the flip cam video clues, students will be instructed and expected to put the members of the marine food chain in proper order, and to print out the final slide for grading in order to earn full credit. Explicitly instruct students on taking proper notes as they actively participate in the problem solving power point presentation on food chains. Emphasize that note taking is essential to earn full credit on this activity. Notes will also organize their thoughts and guide them in the problem-solving process. Students will be monitored during this time.

Close: (5 minutes) Students will be given a 5 minutes warning to complete their assignment in pairs and to print out the results to be turned in for grading. Both the filmed clip and the finished marine food chain will be assessed for completion and accuracy.


ELL: ELL students will be partnered up with a higher ELL student for bilingual support and to work collaboratively.

GATE: GATE students will take on leadership roles of the partnership when completing the assignment. They will also be challenged to use electronic resources in order to find more facts about animals in the marine food chain.

RSP: Accommodations for special needs students include the sound links, visual cues, and being partnered with high (possibly GATE) students. If aids are needed, they will be present during the completion of the assignment.

1. The flip cam video clip.
2. The printed and completed food chain available on the last slide.
3. Notes completed during the course of the problem solving activity.

Rubric: One point is given for each possible pairing of the food chain on the last slide of the power point. A total of 6 points is possible. In addition, there will be a total of 4 points for notes and 5 points for the quality of the flip cam video clue.

Pairings: Points Possible Points Earned
Sun and Phytoplankton 1
Phytoplankton and Zooplankton 1
Zooplankton and Northern Anchovy 1
Northern Anchovy and Giant Pacific Octopus 1
Giant Pacific Octopus and Blue Shark 1
Blue Shark and Killer Whale 1
Completed Notes 4
Completed Video 5


I used this lesson plan with sixth graders and they absolutely loved it! The only difference was that we did not have flip cams and did not get the chance to film all of our student parts. This is something that I would like to do with my students from start to finish. Since we could not properly film all of the parts due to a lack of equipment, we settled for using voice threads to communicate. I would have loved to have an interactive PowerPoint that showcases student work. If my students had flip cams we would use it all the time to execute lesson plans such as this. I would like it to get to the point where the students know how to put together a PowerPoint without my help!

Materials: Flip Video, Microphones, Middle