Throughout my student teaching I found that some of the best lessons I implemented were ones that I shared and requested feedback on from other science teachers. Involving other science teachers allowed me to gain insight from what they have done. It allowed us to share ideas and material, as well as refine instructional strategies. By the end, the finished lesson proved to be much better than the original.
So I thought, why not try this out with my cohort. I don’t have an exact lesson planned, but I have an idea that I would love some feedback on.
During my 8 weeks, the students will be uncovering ideas about the water cycle and minerals. To tie the units together, I wanted to develop a lesson around the key idea that “The use and distribution of mineral resources and fossil fuels have important economic and environmental impacts. As limited resources, they must be used wisely (NYSED, n.d.).” So here is my idea:
I wanted to get articles (newspaper, some scholarly, etc.) on mineral resources in New York State. I then want to pose a scenario depending on the resource. The following is an example
Scenario: For the past 50 years a mining company has been mining Wollastonite in your neighborhood. The land that they mine is right next to a Forest Preserve. The mining company is running out of land and are looking to start mining the Forest Preserve. There is a law that protects the Forest Preserve from industrialization. The only way the mining company can move in on the property is if voters allow it. As a voter what would you vote for, or against, the company expansion onto the Forest Preserve?
To make a well informed decision you will need to:
Explain how you would identify Wollastonite.
Identify human uses for Wollastonite
Identify important economic and environmental impacts?
Some example information I would provide are found below (I would print these out):
I provide them with different mineral resources of New York State, and they:
Explain how to identify the mineral.
Identify human uses for the mineral
Discuss recent issues/concerns involving mineral resource
Some example information I would provide are found below ( I would print these out):
Some other things I was considering was discussing the project and having the students design the rubric with me on how they should be graded. This will help them know what is expected, as well as let them take ownership for their work.
These are just ideas I’m developing. I am open to any suggestions, tips, resources, and/or concerns.
New York State Education Department. (n.d.) Physical Setting/Earth
Science Core Curriculum. Retrieved by