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Understanding By Design

Science Understanding By Design Lesson Plans

Science lesson plans using Understanding by Design from Trinity University.

Collection Contents


By Reid AganThis unit provides students with basic understanding of what matter is and how different states of matter interact with one another. Students use concepts of mass, volume, and density to understand natural cycles of states of matter as well as buoyancy. UNDERSTANDINGS: 1. Matter is neither created nor destroyed, but can change states. 2. State of matter is dependent on energy and density of particles. 3. Changes in states of matter causes natural continuous cycles on Earth. (water cycle, rock cycle, convection weather patterns)These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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Geometry Reasoning

by Lani deGuia

AbstractThe goal of this unit is to get students to think about the purpose and importance of logical thinking and reasoning. This unit is designed with the intention of helpings students apply reasoning to mathematical concepts as well as other areas of their lives.Specifically, this unit will have students discover the value of inductive and deductive reasoning, conditional statements, counterexamples, and proofs.By the end of the unit, students will be able to use their knowledge to create a valid argument for the actions of a fairy tale character and to use their argument in a mock trial.Many supplemental materials were collected and adapted from teachers in North East ISD and Spring Branch ISD.Repository CitationBaxter, Claire B., "Geometric Reasoning" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 294.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/294Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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The Personal Cultural Identity and Literature Unit Plan seeks to lead students to an exploration of their own cultural identity. Through this experience, students will come to an understanding of their own biases and assumptions and understand how these influence the ways in which students interpret and respond to literature. In addition, students will realize that authors’ cultural identities frame the literature which they create.Repository CitationBrown, Sherry, "Personal Cultural Identity and Literature" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 285.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/285Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Clay, Erin E., "Animal Needs and Habitats" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 270.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/270Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Forensic Chemistry

by Lani deGuia

UBD lesson plan covering forensic chemistry principles including chromatography and flame testing.  Duesing, Carrie and Brawner, Bonnie, "Forensic Chemistry" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 296.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/296Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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UBD lesson plan covering Grade 10 persuasive writingJohnson, Brianna, "English II Persuasive Essay" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 275.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/275Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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This three week unit is designed to review Algebra I concepts by using geometric identities. Students will review skills such as writing linear equations in three forms; point-slope, slope-intercept, and standard form. They will use these algebra skills to learn parallel line and special angle pair postulates. It is important to note that the lessons are broken up by "days" which consist of 55 minute class periods. These should be considered guidelines and will need to be adjusted as the unit progresses.Repository CitationKendrick, Danielle R., "Parallel and Perpendicular Lines" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 284.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/284Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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This Understanding by Design unit is written to fulfill the requirement of the elective class Practical Writing and accompanying TEKS objectives. The course is structured to strengthen emerging writer's ability to generate, revise, and refine their writing through the consistent use of writer's notebooks, anchor rubrics, and model texts. A heavy emphasis is placed on student ownership of the revision process and self reflection based on progress demonstrated in a student portfolio. The unit culminates in a personal essay collection, illustration, and author page generated by the student and compiled by the teacher into a class essay collection published as a Kindle EBook.Repository CitationKern, Morgan K., "Practical Writing: The Expository Essay" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 278.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/278Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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This unit is intended for high school students who already possess some knowledge of working with ceramics. It is approximately 6 weeks in length and is written for a block schedule (95 minute class period) and will need to be altered for shorter class times.Brief overview:This ceramics unit will briefly cover the basic terms, tools, materials, supplies, etc. associated with working specifically hand built ceramics. It will delve deeply into specific cultures from different regions of the world and their work with ceramic art. Students’ end goal will be to create a “self-portrait” ceramic piece that reflects who they are as a unique individual while also being a part of the culture, environment and society that surrounds it and the effects these stimuli have had on the artist.Details:In addition to the culminating project, students will also: take a pre-assessment, complete daily warm-ups that are associated with the lesson, go over the basics of ceramics as a quick refresher, inductively begin to learn different cultures from around the world and their work with and influence on ceramics as its own art form, take a short quiz to informally assess progress, create a wall tile as a refresher for working with clay and glaze, conduct an in-progress critique with the peers, write an opinion essay and create test tiles during down time (while clay is drying/firing). At the end of the unit, students will complete a final critique in small groups and as a whole class, take a post assessment and complete their rubric.Repository CitationLenderman, Shelby, "Cultural Evolution of Ceramics" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 295.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/295Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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This unit looks at the impact that the Renaissance, Scientific Revolution, and Reformation had on the world. It traces important people and ideas, and highlights the impact that each of these time periods had on the immediate and future world. For the Performance Task, the students create a newspaper, called "The Changing Times" that requires them to analyze the impact that inventions and ideas from these time periods had on the world, as well as look at futuristic inventions (to our time) and the possible impact they will have on our world.Repository CitationLorge, Bethany, "Changing Times: The Renaissance, Scientific Revolution, and Reformation" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 290.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/290Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Mallette, Dan, "Insert Novel Here: a Metacognitive Study of the Reading Process" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 293.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/293Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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This unit presents the poetic structure of the Shakespearean Sonnet and its importance and place in the world of poetry. The unit focuses on familiarizing students with the structural elements of a sonnet (e.g., iambs, iambic pentameter, rhyme schemes, turns, stanzas, quatrains, and couplets) as well as using the writing comprehension process to write an original sonnet that uses the conventions of poetry in hand with imagery and figurative language. Students will also analyze and interpret sonnets, connecting them to modern forms of media including songs, raps, movies and music videos. Students will understand that writers construct personal, creative poems to express their encompassing world views. The unit will end with a performance assessment of students constructing their own “Hollywood Sonnet” (following appropriate structural criteria) to display in a Gallery Walk for students to evaluate and discuss.Repository CitationMarkmann, Ryan, "The Shakespearean Sonnet" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 280.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/280Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Outside Reading

by Lani deGuia

This unit is intended to show students that the reading they do for pleasure involves the same set of thought processes that reading literature academically does. Students will choose novels or narrative nonfiction to read outside class and use these narratives to explore how authors use literary elements to make books enjoyable to read.Repository CitationMuire, Elizabeth IC Ms., "Outside Reading" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 268.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/268Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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This unit is designed to foster a community of collaborative theatre artists who ask the question: “How do we create stories and bring them to life?” Students analyze plays and characters in the context of Aristotle’s Six Elements of Theatre, the Elements of Plot, and Robert Cohen’s GOTE (Goal, Other, Tactic, Expectation) acting approach. Through using these elements to analyze published plays, they apply the same analytical skills while writing their own individual ten-minute plays. Students learn how to effectively and respectfully give and receive constructive feedback as they conduct peer-critiques of the scripts. The finished plays are read out loud as a class, and a few are selected to be produced. The unit culminates with a ten-minute play festival where students participate on a collaborative team as actors, directors and/or crew members.Repository CitationParker, William A., "Playapalooza: Ten-Minute Play Festival" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 291.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/291Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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This is an eight week unit for freshman students on a daily 45 minute schedule; it is intended for the Pre-AP level. This unit focuses on personal/hidden agendas in writing, using characterization to find theme and purpose, evaluating/changing first impressions, and writing sophisticated literary analysis. The transfer project has students apply the knowledge and skills they have learned to make a first impression of a political candidate, evaluate that first impression by analyzing research consisting of non-fiction literature and videos, and write an analysis of the research and the character of the political candidate.Repository CitationPatillo, Heather M. and Thomson, Amy R., "Pride and Prejudice UbD" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 292.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/292Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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UbD lesson plan covering the various physical properties of matter.  Perez, Eloisa, "Physical Properties of Matter" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 272.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/272Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Art History Remix

by Lani deGuia

This unit is designed to get middle school students in an art classroom thinking about the central understanding that all contemporary art is an assemblage of previous artistic influences. Through the creation of an Art History Remix, in which students reimagine and recreate a famous work of art, students explore the essential question: “What makes art original?” In this unit, students conduct in progress critiques of personal artwork and analyze the original artwork of famous artists and peers. Students begin developing the skills necessary to communicate about their own artwork and the artwork of others through both written and spoken word.Repository CitationPuentes, Andrea, "Art History Remix" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 282.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/282Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Ramirez, Claire F. Ms., "Visual Art 6 Ecosystem Landscape Drawing" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 279.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/279Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Using WWI, the Great Depression, and WWII as a backdrop, students will determine how catastrophic events can have not only a negative effect, but also a positive effect. Students will also investigate the role that individuals play in world history and how individuals can sometimes have an immense impact both negatively and positively. To transfer their new knowledge, students will research the positive effects, negative effects, and individuals associated with various catastrophic events of the last 40-50 years.Repository CitationRodriguez, Hillary, "Positive Consequences of Catastrophic Events?" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 276.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/276Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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AP Physics 1 is a new course for the 2014-2015 school year and the emphasis on inquiry-based laboratory experience will be new for our students, primarily juniors. Historically, our juniors have taken PreAP physics where they learn to use mathematics and graphs to model data and then learn a method to communicate their findings in a lab report format. Inquiry labs have been introduced primarily in AP Physics B, or senior level classes. Feedback from our AP Physics B classes indicates a need for more guidance on writing procedures, developing analysis methods, and ultimately posing questions that can be tested in the lab. Thus, we plan to begin the year in AP Physics 1 with two weeks dedicated to helping students develop procedure writing and data analysis skills that we will build throughout the year. By the end of the unit, we expect students to author procedures that can be followed by peers within the same class, and we expect them to increase their facility with the use of multiple modes for communicating and analyzing motion including observations, diagrams, verbal descriptions, graphs, and mathematical models.Repository CitationSanders, Stephanie D. and Perez, Noe, "An Introduction to Inquiry Labs in Physics" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 274.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/274Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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HoneybeeZZZ

by Lani deGuia

First grade students will engage in a research unit about honey bees, learning about colony demographics, habitats, pollination patterns and preferences, and their importance within the agriculture world. The goal is for students to understand the importance of honeybees and their impact on our global and local ecological systems.Repository CitationTaylor, Jordan E., "HoneybeeZZZ" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 269.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/269Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Warren, Waynne S., "The Civil War - A Deadly Dinner Party" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 273.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/273Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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This unit is centered on sixth grade standards regarding autobiographies, biographies, memoirs, author's purpose, and literary devices. Students will read Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice along with excerpts from memoirs and other biographies. Students will analyze each of the genres and identify connections between the selected works. For the culminating performance assessment students will write their own autobiography, biography, or memoir.Repository CitationWeaver, Stephany, "Your Story and My Story: GenreStudy on Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 283.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/283Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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UbD lesson plan covering 6th grade personal finance and financial literacy.Webb, Melanie R., "6th Grade Personal Financial Literacy" (2014). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 288.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/288Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Physical Properties

by Lani deGuia

By Leslie Davenport and Heather McOmberThis is a unit focused on a TEK from the Curriculum Framework for the STAAR Alternate. Students will understand that everything is made up of matter and that matter can change from one state to another. Throughout the unit, students will learn about physical properties, the different states of matter, and about completing and writing experiment procedures. At the end of the unit students will complete an experiment where they have to change crayons into different states in order to create a multicolored crayon.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Maxwell FazioThis unit is designed to be taught in AP environmental science (APES). It is a year-long unit that allows students to conduct an authentic longitudinal study of an aquatic ecosystem. Students are instructed to gather data on a weekly basis and then analyze it for patterns or trends. This will be done in the klong (canal) just outside of the American School of Bangkok. Note that the instructor can adapt this unit to accommodate their local environment. The entire class will compile data on a variety of variables using a shared online document. Students will learn to analyze the health of an ecosystem quantitatively and the effects of human impact on that ecosystem. Students will also monitor the biodiversity of organisms (including microorganisms) within that ecosystem. According to the teacher guide on apcentral.collegeboard.com, the lab component of APES provides the instructor with “an opportunity to put their own stamp on the course.” For this reason, the focus of this unit is not on acquiring specific content knowledge, but instead on the experience of conducting a sophisticated ecological investigation and the skills pertaining thereto. There is also an emphasis on drawing conclusions from a large set of data and supporting them with a combination of experimental evidence and background research. Goals addressed (Taken directly from the course description at apcentral.collegeboard.org): • Science is a method of learning more about the world. • Science constantly changes the way we understand the world. • Natural systems change over time and space. • Humans alter natural systems. • Environmental problems have a cultural and social context. • Understanding the role of cultural, social, and economic factors is vital to the development of solutionsThese works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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Everyday Forces

by Lani deGuia

By Michelle HockleyThe basis of all scientific research is the Scientific Method. Students need a strong foundation in the steps of this method. One of the goals of this unit is to provide an understanding of the scientific method. The other goals are to encourage an understanding of everyday forces and determination of work/no work in a situation. These are basic physics concepts that are a part of the 7th grade Science TEKS. Students will incorporate their knowledge of the scientific method and create an experimental investigation focused on an everyday force.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Stephanie Sanders and Dayna FogleThis energy unit is intended as part three of a three part series where students use launchers to explore how scientists combine theory and measured data to build and use predictive models. The launchers will be used during projectiles, forces, and work/energy and students will measure and use data adjusted theoretical models to endeavor to complete two hands-on performance tasks. Historically, our students have struggled to understand why “physics breaks” in the lab, and we intend to use these launchers throughout our Newtonian mechanics units to open an ongoing dialogue about how modeling is used to bridge the gap between theory and real world behavior. The three parts work as follows:In the projectile unit, students will work in groups to build a spring loaded launcher and use real time technology to form a predictive equation relating exit velocity to spring displacement. They will then use this model to launch their ball into a cup from a horizontal position and an angled position as the performance task in this unit.In the forces unit, students will perform a laboratory analysis on their spring(s) to observe the relationship between force and spring displacement for the launcher spring and to determine where Hooke’s Law is an appropriate model for finding theThese works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Stephany WeaverThis unit is designed for the second semester of sixth grade as introduction to informational text. The unit focuses on determining importance in informational text and making inferences in fictional and informational text. Students will analyze text features in informational texts and author’s purpose. Students will be asked to think about the way DNA affects our lives and the possibility of DNA alterations. Students will understand that authors organize a text to highlight the main idea and important information.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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Geometric Optics

by Lani deGuia

By Amanda ChapmanStudents will be given the task as forensic specialist to analyze a portfolio of evidence and report on their findings. As a class will then compare their findings to a list of suspects provided by the police. As an extension, students will discuss to what degree forensic evidence is irrefutable (the CSI Effect). While completing this unit, student will learn the properties of reflection and refraction of light. Specially, students will be able to use Snell’s Law, The Law of Reflection, and diagrams to predict image location, height, magnification, orientation, and type. This unit is designed to follow after the waves and light units.The task students are asked to complete has been purposefully designed to be short. Unlike the first semester of the course that (that contains large units), the second semester contains many small topics. This unit is an attempt to connect a few small activities I have done with students and link them together in a meaningful. It also builds upon the driving questions of the course: 1. What are the methods used by scientist to understand our universe? 2. How do science and society interact? and 3. How do you use physics in your life? 4. To what degree are scientific findings irrefutable?These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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Habitats

by Lani deGuia

By Leslie DavenportThis is a unit focused on a TEK from the Curriculum Framework for the STAAR Alternate. Students will understand that animals live in specific environments called habitats and that each habitat has its own characteristics. Throughout the unit, students will learn about five different habitats that animals live in. At the end of the unit, students will create a mural of a habitat of their choosing, including at least three elements. Students will then have to describe the elements of the mural.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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Energy Resources

by Lani deGuia

By Lindsay Freres and Kristen MiceliThis unit is designed to guide students in the discovery of how sedimentary rock and fossil fuels are formed, what nonrenewable and renewable resources are, and how alternative energy can be both useful and harmful to our environment. Students will compute labs that show how sedimentary rock is formed and how this process is similar to the formation of fossil fuels. They will also discuss the different forms of alternative energy, stating both pros and cons for each. Students will use writing, illustration, and oral explanation throughout the unit. The final performance task will allow students to apply, explain, and reveal self-knowledge of the content by creating an exhibit about sedimentary rock and fossil fuels. Students will also be required to determine the best form of alternative energy to use to power the exhibit then explain why they think this is the best option for this San Antonio location.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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What's the Weather?

by Lani deGuia

By Lisa HovelandStudents will engage in a twelve day unit delving in different facets of weather and the seasons. Lessons give students the chance to explore the differences between hot or cold, clear or cloudy, rainy or icy, and calm or windy. Students will learn to observe and record changes in the sky during the day and at night. They also learn how to interpret a thermometer. Students also have the chance to learn about the seasons, realizing that there is a difference between the seasons in Texas and the seasons in New England. At the end of the unit, students have to opportunity to synthesize their learning by pretending to go on a trip where they need to predict to the weather and appropriately prepare for the vacation.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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Heating and Cooling

by Lani deGuia

By Kyla McGlynn Students will practice making, recording and discussing their observations of materials that have changed through heating and cooling. Students will be able to identify if a material has been changed by adding or removing heat, and will accurately record the change through drawings and labels.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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Personal Safety

by Lani deGuia

By Anne PeppersThis unit addresses the Texas Pre-Kindergarten Guideline “Child practices good habits of personal safety.” At the conclusion of this unit, students will know that we should always try to make safe choices, safety is everyone’s responsibility, and rules help keep us safe. Students will be able to identify safe and unsafe choices at school; give examples of safe and choices at home, on the street, and in vehicles; and practice safe behaviors at school (with occasional reminders). Specific areas of safety addressed include school, street, fire, vehicle, and animal safety and safe people vs. strangers.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Stephanie SandersDiscovering Uniformly Accelerated motion is intended as a three week uniform acceleration unit taught weeks 4-6 in the context of a larger 9 week study on kinematics and Newton’s Laws in a regular level physics I course. Students are expected to have completed a unit on constant velocity motion and vectors prior to this unit. In addition, students are expected to have 8th grade level familiarity with forces (i.e. a force is a push or a pull). The unit is structured to allow students to uncover known relationships in a discovery fashion in an effort to keep this unit physics rather than algebra focused.Because students experience motion in their everyday lives, through this experience, they often form misconceptions about motion that persist even after Physics I. Misconceptions such as “heavy objects fall faster than light objects,” “motion only occurs with an applied force,” and “gravity slows you down” are particularly persistent among my students. Thus, I elected to begin this unit by having students discuss and experience the difference between casual, everyday observation and careful experimentation when doing scientific discovery.Students begin the unit from the historical context of Galileo’s experiments with the acceleration of gravity. First discussing why scientists argue that Galileo never dropped items off of the tower of Pisa, and then reproducing his inclined plane experiments and using graphical analysis to discover that:In the absence of a force, relatively constant speed is maintained.2. Distance traveled due to gravitational pull depends on a quadratic time function (acceleration)3. This quadratic function (acceleration) is independent of massHaving exhausted Galilean technology, we will introduce the term acceleration and use real time technology to then directly measure the acceleration of gravity and to gain further experience with motion graphs.After ensuring that students understand the graphical representations of distance, velocity, and acceleration, students will revisit graphs to develop graphically based kinematics equation.After a few days of practice with using kinematics equations, students will be tasked to develop a plan, including calculations, to accurately time the drop of a water balloon to intersect with an approaching constant velocity object (me). This performance task checks student ability to use constant velocity and uniform acceleration kinematics equations in a predictive manner as done in real world scenarios.The unit ends with students learning further applications of kinematics in a 2 day series of projectile discovery activities focused on behavior and application of existing knowledge.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Alexander Serna-WallenderBy the end of this unit students will able to identify the various layers of the earth and their characteristics. Students will be able to describe the relationship between the lithosphere and the mantle. Using their knowledge of this relationship, students will then be engaged in exploring how tectonic plates work and their interactions along plate boundaries. Students will also be able to predict the resulting geologic activity given a specific plate boundary type. Lastly, students will be able describe the formation and consequences of three common geologic events: earthquakes, volcanoes, and mountain building.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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Circuits

by Lani deGuia

By Carrie Sites and Melissa Cole Students will understand that electricity flows through a circuit which must be closed for the energy to travel, that different materials can allow energy to flow or prevent it from travelling and that the energy source must be properly connected for energy to flow. At the end of this unit students will be able to independently identify complete and incomplete circuits, offer ways to fix incomplete circuits, identify parts of a circuit, and create a circuit that is a part of a lighthouse.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Daisy Wang and Amber Schumachern this unit on cell theory and cell structure and functions, 7th grade students will be able to recognize the different levels of organization in plants and animals including cells, tissues, organs, organ systems, and organisms (7.12C). Students will also learn to differentiate between structure and function in plant and animal cell organelles (7.12D) as well as relating how the functions of the cell helps the organism to carry out the functions necessary for survival (7.12E) Students will be able to recognize the characteristics of the cell theory and that all cells need energy from food to sustain life (7.12F).These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Christy CusterThis unit is meant to be taught after second graders have learned about plants and the basic needs of plants. In this unit students will explore how plants and animals rely on each other for survival. Through concrete, hands-on, and multimedia activities, students learn about food chains, basic needs, and what is required for survival in different habitats. As a culminating activity students will choose a habitat and a natural or man-made event that occurs in that habitat. Students will then draw a picture showing what the habitat looks like before the event and make predictions about how the habitat will change, specifically how the animals will react to the change. Next, students will draw a picture showing the habitat after the event and write a newspaper article to inform the public of the changes.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Michelle HockleyThe main goal of this unit is for students to formulate a basic understanding of the mechanical physics concepts of force, work, motion and energy. Simple machines were examined in elementary school science so a review of these concepts is included in the unit. Then force, work, motion and energy are introduced with emphasis on lab work during which students will take the information and apply it.The final assessment of the unit is a performance task in which students will independently design and create a rollercoaster with the requirements that it must be fun, safe and educational. The educational component will include Newton’s Laws of Motion, graphing of speed and motion, and potential vs. kinetic energy.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Beth Morrow and Anne PeppersThis unit is based on the Texas Pre-Kindergarten Guideline, “Child identifies, observes, and discusses objects in the sky.” At the conclusion of this unit, students will know that natural changes occur in the sky, that changes in the sky affect objects on the ground, and differences between the day and night skies and be able to observe and discuss characteristics of clouds and make representations, ask questions and/or make comments about the sun, stars, and moon, and investigate what happens to things exposed to the sun.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Beth Morrow and Anne PeppersThis unit is based on the Pre-Kindergarten Science Guideline “Students will investigate and describe sources of energy, including heat, light, and electricity.” By the end of the unit, students will know that energy comes in the forms of electricity, heat, and light and be able to identify sources of energy and safely use electricity.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Beth Morrow and Anne PeppersThis unit addresses the Texas Pre-Kindergarten Guideline “Child identifies good habits of nutrition and exercise.” By the end of the unit, students will know that:- exercise is necessary to stay healthy- how the body is affected by eating healthy vs. unhealthy foodsand will be able to:- identify healthy and unhealthy foods;- sort ‘go,’ ‘slow,’ and ‘whoa’ foods; and- demonstrate and discuss the need for exercise and rest to stay healthy.
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Matter Matters

by Lani deGuia

By Natalie Pierce, Jamie Boelens, and Catherine BrackettStudents will understand that:All matter can be classified by its observable, physical properties.2. Matter can be measured and changed by energy (ex: heat, light, sound).3. When materials are put together, they can do things that they cannot do by themselves.Students will know:The difference among a solid, liquid, and a gas.2. The concepts of heating, cooling, cutting, melting, folding, and sanding.3. Energy is power- the ability to do work or make changes.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Theodore Risinger and Stephanie GreathouseThis unit covers basic Genetics (Punnett Squares and terminology), the role it plays in adaptations and how it affects Natural Selection and Selective Breeding. This unit will also tie in the environment (Biomes) and how it plays a major role in determining the physical and behavioral characteristics of plants and animals.Interconnection of these “big ideas” will facilitate better overall understanding of how time and changes in the environment will affect all living organisms.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Alexander Serna-WallenderBy the end of this unit students will able to distinguish the difference between offspring from asexual reproduction and sexual reproduction. Students will be able to describe how traits are passed from parent to offspring and the role that DNA and chromosomes play in the passage of inherited traits. This unit will also lead students to predict genetic outcomes using Punnett Squares. Using their knowledge of heredity students will then be engaged in exploring how the passage of genetic traits can change over time based on an organism’s environment, through natural selection. Students will also be able compare the difference between natural selection and artificial selection. Lastly, students will be able describe common adaptations and the roles that they play in an organisms survival.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Mattina Van CoppenolleIn this unit, students will investigate living trees in order to answer the essential question of “What is a Tree?” By using some materials in the Trees FOSS Kit and classroom mini-field trips, students will experience how trees and leaves have identifiable structures such as particular shapes, colors, or textures. Through these outside investigations students will understand that there are different types of trees (e.g. evergreens, deciduous, old trees, young trees, oak, red oak, maple, pine, fruit trees). Likewise, trees are identifiable by physical characteristics such as the type of leaves and bark, product of the tree (acorns, apples, etc) or shape of the tree. In class, students will learn how a tree grows, the basic needs of trees, and the parts of trees (roots, trunk, bark, branches, and leaves). At the end of the unit, students will adopt a class tree in the school yard to observe through the seasons. Students will observe and document the seasonal changes of their class tree in a science journal.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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Ecology

by Lani deGuia

By Daisy Wang and Yipsel Ramosoals/TEKS:(10) The student knows that biological systems are composed of multiple levels. The student is expected to:(C) analyze the levels of organization in biological systems and relate the levels to each other and to the whole system.(11) The student knows that biological systems work to achieve and maintain balance. The student is expected to:(B) investigate and analyze how organisms, populations, and communities respond to external factors;(C) summarize the role of microorganisms in both maintaining and disrupting the health of both organisms and ecosystems*(D) describe how events and processes that occur during ecological succession can change populations and species diversity.(12) The student knows that interdependence and interactions occur within an environmental system. The student is expected to:*(A) interpret relationships, including predation, parasitism, commensalism, mutualism, and competition among organisms;(B) compare variations and adaptations of organisms in different ecosystems;*(C) analyze the flow of matter and energy through trophic levels using various models, including food chains, food webs, and ecological pyramids;(D) recognize that long-term survival of species is dependent on changing resource bases that are limited;(E) describe the flow of matter through the carbon and nitrogen cycles and explain the consequences of disrupting these cycles; and*(F) Describe how environmental change can impact ecosystem stability.*readiness standardsThese works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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Bond...Chemical Bond

by Lani deGuia

By Katie FitchIn the unit, Bond…Chemical Bond, students will learn about chemical bonds. Students will learn how to illustrate, name, write formulas, and characterize the three main types of chemical bonds: ionic, covalent, and metallic. Students will begin with an anchoring activity exploring how the nature of different types of bonds affect properties such as conduction of electricity. At the end of the unit they will demonstrate that they have mastered the skills of illustrating and diagramming bond types, naming compounds and writing correct formulas. They will also demonstrate a conceptual understanding of bonding by identifying and explaining the nature of bonds found in three different powders by relying on data from the anchoring conductivity experiment.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Alex Wallender By the end of this unit students will understand that life depends on energy flow through systems. They will recognize the many energy transformations that take place, and focus especially on the transformation of radiant energy to chemical energy in the process of photosynthesis. Students will also understand that as energy is transferred throughout an ecosystem and is used or transformed along the way. They will be able to diagram the flow of energy in a number of manners including: food chains, food webs, and energy pyramids. Lastly, students will leave this unit understanding that organisms and their environments; both living and non-living are interconnected. They will be able to describe various environments and the biodiversity created in those ecosystems. In addition they will be able to describe how an environment and the organisms in it attempt to maintain balance when disrupted. In the end students will be able to take a plot of land and describe the different ecological features of it from biodiversity to energy flow and predict its response to various internal and external factors.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Dustin DemoinThe kinetic energy (energy of motion) of the particles that make up a substance determines the state of the material. During phase changes, energy increases, but the temperature does not increase, until all of the material has changed phase. Energy and stresses cause changes in physical properties of all materialssolids, liquids, and gases.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Dustin DemoinThis unit attempts to provide students with a deeper understanding of the properties of solutions, the process of dissolving, and the role of solvent. Students will explore both the concepts and the applications of basic solution theory. Students will investigate the role of a solvent, including its properties necessary to dissolve the solute. They will also see the effects of changing the colligative properties and how the concentration of a solution changes those properties in different ways.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Dustin DemoinThis unit attempts to provide students with a deeper understanding of the properties of matter and physical and chemical properties/changes. This unit could be used at the middle school or IPC level with the omission of the discussion of the kinetic molecular theory. You will also need access to a CRC manual for the project. You could just work with photocopies of the book for the triple points and critical points.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Roxanne Hammonds Students will learn about the different types of simple machines including pulleys, levers, wedges, Screws, inclined planes, and wheel & axles. They will be able to classify objects as simple or compound machines. They will describe how humans use machines to make everyday tasks easier. They will illustrate their knowledge of simple machines throughout the unit through various science journals, fold books, and flashcards. As a culminating performance task, the students will use what they have learned to make a Rube Goldberg machine. Students will choose what type of useful work their machine will do. The students will present their machines at the end of the unit and complete a self-assessment on the project.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Theo RisingerThis unit focuses on the interactions and motions of the earth, sun, and moon that cause seasons, the lunar cycle and tides on earth. Most middle school age students have misconceptions of these topics. The primary goal of this unit to correct any misconceptions students may have on these topics. Secondly, to further their understanding of how and why things on earth happen the way they do. For each of the topics covered no one single rule or individual event will cover all the aspects involved in the great question of “Why?”. Students will be challenged because they will have to look models of things much larger than their immediate world, analyze them, and develop multiple cause and effect relationships to explain the phenomena. The performance assessments will require the student to apply some very drastic changes to the earth sun moon systems operation and explain how these changes will affect life on earth. Student groups will role play as expert scientists & government officials, making presentations and challenging the presentations. This unit’s assessment piece could be combined with some of the TEKS involving weather, convection currents, and Oceans to include interactions of multiple systems, forcing the student to assimilate ever more concepts, and make more precise predictioins.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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Water Cycle

by Lani deGuia

By Anna BleyThis unit will help students to discover how the water cycle works and the implications it has on our planet and in our lives. They will conduct a series of experiments and activities to investigate the physical explanations behind each of the processes that make up the water cycle including evaporation, condensation, precipitation, and collection. They will use their knowledge of the scientific method to plan, predict, conduct, and analyze these investigations to examine how water changes physical state to be recycled on Earth. Additionally, they will relate their knowledge of the properties of physical matter to identify how water is changed and moved by this cycle in nature. Students will also apply their prior knowledge of cycles to describe how the processes are related and the impact that people and the environment have on the cycle. Students will begin to understand the limited supply of fresh water on our planet and think about ways to maintain and preserve this water for human use. Ultimately, students will culminate the unit with one of three projects that will challenge them to think critically about a given real-world or simulated topic and comprehensively demonstrate their understanding of the information learned throughout the unit.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By  Anne Cowell The goal of this unit is for students to understand: An object’s motion is dependent on the forces that are acting or have acted on it. An object’s motion can be pictured in a graph or be determined from a graph. The unit addresses balanced and unbalanced forces, types of forces, speed, and reviews graphing to address the understandings and the district expectations.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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By Dustin DemoinThis unit attempts to provide the connections for a four week unit that covers Ecosystems, Genetics, and Stresses (both internal and external). The unit first recaps the information that should have already been covered in 6th and 7th grade with respect to ecosystems. This includes the performance assessment which centers on using their knowledge to reconnect the concepts they already know with the ones they are still struggling to learn. Next, the unit draws connections to genetics, specifically traits and DNA. These are impacted by the ecosystem and human and environmental factors. These factors are focused on last, but are discussed in the ecosystems (including the performance assessment) and genetics sections as well. Thus, the cohesive unit highlights specific parts of the enclosed unit flow chart for defined amounts of time, but the connections are much more than originally meet the eye. This unit strives to be interactive and informative, yet is focused on getting students depth not just breadth. Deep understanding is the goal at every step and students should be encouraged to come up with all of the connections they can between the sections of the unit and their world. This unit aligns with the North East ISD scope and the TEKS: 8.6 (C), 8.11 (A-C), and 8.14 (B). The TAKS workbook also calls for DNA to be addressed (but its molecular structure to be left out), and thus this too has been added to the curriculum.These works are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
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Cells

by Lani deGuia

Students will be able to identify, illustrate, and describe the main types of cells and their organelles. They will determine the major differences between eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells. They will know that all living things are made of cells, and that each part of the cell performs a specific function. They will also recognize the organization of living things from cell to organism. More importantly, students will understand that cells are part of a system. The performance assessment will gauge their knowledge of this by comparing the structures and functions of a cell to those of their own school.Repository CitationHammonds, Roxanne, "Cells" (2008). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 61.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/61Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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In this unit, students will learn the about innate and learned characteristics in animals and humans through a series of teacher- and student-led discussions, readings, reflections, learning activities, and demonstrations. They will learn that most animal behavior is directly related to survival needs, and that the environment influences what an animal learns. Students will consider how and why behaviors are learned and determine what kinds of animals are capable of learning. They will debate how we know whether a trait is inherited or learned, and they will learn that the fields of genetics and behavioral science still hold many mysteries for scientists today. Students will investigate these ideas further by reading case studies involving chimpanzees and the work of Jane Goodall, as well as articles focused on common house pets. The unit will conclude with the Survival Guide Project, during which students will describe inherited traits and learned behaviors that will help them survive in a natural environment of their choice. They will indicate how they acquired these survival traits and skills and choose additional inherited traits or learned characteristics that would increase their chances of survival. The final product will be presented in small groups and assessed using a rubric.Repository CitationMorrow, Kathryn, "Inherited Traits Versus Learned Behaviors" (2008). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 65.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/65Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Our World In Space

by Lani deGuia

All the components of our solar system and universe function as a system. • Gravity is the force that holds our solar system and our universe together. • Our sun and our solar system is one of hundreds of billions in our galaxy and our galaxy is one of hundreds of billions in our universe. • As Technology (including telescopes, satellites, and space travel) expands so does our knowledge of our universe, but our knowledge and technology is limited.Repository CitationSpickelmier, Courtney, "Our World in Space" (2008). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 63.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/63Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Animals

by Lani deGuia

Students will understand that… • All living things are producers or consumers. • Animals have different external characteristics (structures) that allow their basic needs to be met. • All animals depend upon each other and their environment to survive. o Animals are either carnivore, herbivore, omniivore o Know temperature and rainfall of desert, oceans, woodlands, plains or prairie, rain forest • Animals develop and change over time in different ways such as in: color, size, mass, creating sounds, and movement. • Animals usually grow in a predictable way and usually grow to look like their parents. Possible misunderstandings or confusions: • The arrows in a food chain point in the direction that energy moves.Repository CitationTrinity University and Canyon Ridge Elementary School (San Antonio, Tex.), "Animals" (2008). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 36.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/36Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Earth and Moon

by Lani deGuia

Students will understand that… -there are similarities and differences in physical characteristics between the earth and moon -force of gravity keeps planets and moon in orbit -difference between revolution and rotation - the sun has specific features -moon phases.Repository CitationTrinity University and Canyon Ridge Elementary School (San Antonio, Tex.), "Earth and Moon" (2008). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 34.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/34Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Forces and Motion

by Lani deGuia

Students will understand that… • All machines are forms or combinations of six simple machines (inclined plane, lever, pulley, screw, wedge, wheel and axle). • Simple machines are tools that make work easier and have greatly affected how we live today.Repository CitationTrinity University and Canyon Ridge Elementary School (San Antonio, Tex.), "Forces and Motion" (2008). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 70.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/70Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Matter

by Lani deGuia

Students will understand that… • Everything is made of matter, and all matter occupies space. • Matter is neither created nor destroyed but can change state. • Each type of matter has it’s own specific physical properties.Repository CitationTrinity University and Canyon Ridge Elementary School (San Antonio, Tex.), "Matter" (2008). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 49.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/49Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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My Five Senses

by Lani deGuia

Students will understand that… • They have five senses. • Humans utilize their five senses to gather information from their environment.Repository CitationTrinity University and Canyon Ridge Elementary School (San Antonio, Tex.), "My Five Senses" (2008). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 72.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/72Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Natural World

by Lani deGuia

Students will understand that… • forces change land • the same force can be both destructive and constructive • you can learn the history of the earth by reading things like tree rings and sedimentary layers.Repository CitationTrinity University and Canyon Ridge Elementary School (San Antonio, Tex.), "Natural World" (2008). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 56.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/56Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Math in/and Physics

by Lani deGuia

This unit is written to be taught during the first two weeks of the physics course. In any physics course, from conceptual physics up through graduate studies, there is a unique and significant dependence on the mathematical concepts and skills required to succeed in the course. A keen understanding of mathematics, as well as knowing how to apply the tools, is an important piece of the physics course. Math in/and Physics is designed to answer the question, “If this is a physics class, why do I have to do so much math?” The goals of this unit are designed to allow the students to discover for themselves the answers to this question. This unit takes the students through the entire year, by way of a physical survey of the math skills needed. They will audit the year according to math milestones that will help them achieve confidence and strength in physics. Students will create a Physics/Math Survival Guide that will contain the math concepts, examples of when to use these concepts, and a “how-to” page that walks to reader though the problem-solving protocols for the physical concepts. The Survival Guide is a product that students will continue to add to and build as the year progresses, and, in many cases, this Guide can follow the high school students through to college. In addition to the goal of academic success, the Physics/Math Survival Guide also serves as a model in organization, scaffolding, and interdisciplinary studies. It teaches the students to go beyond the individualization of class and subject and make connections. The Guide will help students realize the value of mathematical reason and logic beyond the math classroom, and into their lives as learners and doers.Repository CitationWhetstone, Penny, "Math in/and Physics" (2008). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 51.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/51Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Matter

by Lani deGuia

In this unit students will identify matter by its chemical and physical properties and begin learning how to write sections of a lab report. Students will also practice using scientific equipment especially graduated cylinders, beakers, and triple beam balances.Repository CitationCowell, Anne, "Matter" (2006). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 14.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/14Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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This unit will help students recognize the many ways that plants and animals adapt to their environments. Students will explore how an organism s environment affects the way the organism looks, as well as identify challenges that organisms face both past and present. Students will also compare endangered or extinct animals with animals that are successful. In doing this, they will attempt to discern why certain animals thrive while others do not. In the performance assessments, students will be asked to create an animal with adaptations for a given environment and to adapt an extinct or endangered plant to its environment to ensure survival. Both of these tasks will require students to critically think about the different types of environments that exist, the different types of adaptations that can be useful, and to put those concepts together to create a new, successful organism.Repository CitationMahler, Jennifer, "Plant and Animal Adaptations" (2006). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 24.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/24Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Ecology

by Lani deGuia

By the end of this unit students will understand that organisms in an ecosystem are interdependent and that an ecosystem is made up of more than just the living things in it. Furthermore, they will be able to create, correctly label, and predict the effects of a given event on a food web. Throughout this unit students will practice creating and interpreting food webs & nutrient cycles. They will also practice using the appropriate vocabulary as listed in the unit below. In the performance assessment, students research an ecological issue of their choice and create a report containing an explanation of the issue, a food web, a nitrogen cycle, and a water cycle, each with an explanation of how their ecological issue affects it. Finally, students will compare and contrast their report to another student with a different ecological issue, deciding which issue is the most detrimental to the environment and why.Repository CitationSimonds, Matt, "Ecology" (2006). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 21.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/21Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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Catastrophic Events

by Lani deGuia

This unit focuses on the study of earthquakes and volcanoes as a means for better understanding the dynamic Earth we live on; and the impact of catastrophic events on human life. The student should complete this unit with a greater understanding of Earth's dynamic nature, being able to scientifically explain the cause of earthquakes and volcanoes. Along with the science of volcanoes and earthquakes the student will appreciate the value of scientific study as it relates to the protection of human life and society. This unit is by no means an all inclusive look at all catastrophic events. The goal is an understanding of two types of catastrophic events that will enable the student to analyze other catastrophic, their scientific study and their impact on human life.Repository CitationRisinger, Theodore, "Catastrophic Events" (2005). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 1.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/1Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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In this unit, students will explore patterns of change in the earth s layers through hands-on experiments and activities, as well as case studies of geologic phenomena. Students will learn about volcano types, volcanic activity, and plate movement and its effects. Students will be exposed to the plate tectonic theory and its implications on geologic history. They will observe the effects of geologic activity on human life based through case studies such as Mt. St. Helens, the 1989 earthquake in Loma Prieta, California, and the tsunami of 2004. Students will also gain new perspective on the decisions humans make in their choice of location. Why do people live near potentially harmful landmarks? What are the benefits associated with living near a volcano or fault line? Students will demonstrate their understanding of these questions through diary entries and class discussions. Students will also learn about how mountains are formed and will classify mountain types based on their appearance. Throughout the unit, students will examine models of the earth as well as models of geologic phenomena. They will observe how the models represent real-world situations, and will also identify limitations of each model. Throughout each portion of the unit, students will connect patterns of change to geologic phenomena, in order to hypothesize what the earth was like in the past, as well as to predict what geologic phenomena might occur in the future. By practicing such skills, students will see the importance of scientific study to the well-being of life on earth. The unit will conclude with a performance task that, upon giving students scientific data (seismic readings, temperature readings, relief maps, and pictures of the landmark), asks them to identify the geologic landmark of a hypothetical area. Students must then identify potential benefits and dangers of living near the landmark, possible events that have occurred in the area's recent history, and possible events that may occur in the future. Students will gather their findings and prepare a pamphlet to present to a small audience. By using their knowledge in a practical way, students will enjoy a memorable and intellectually rewarding activity.Repository CitationShay, Michael and Susong, Carrie, "Geology: Just Touching the Surface" (2005). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 4.http://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/educ_understandings/4Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License.
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