Name: Emily McGann Date: December 2nd, 2010 Grade Level/Subject: 1st Grade Science Prerequisite Knowledge

: Students know what a poem is. Students know what the 5 senses are. Students have been introduced to similes and metaphors, but may need a refresher on what they are. Students have experienced or discussed what a blizzard is like before. Approximate Time: 40 minutes Student Objectives/Student Outcomes:

Students will create a poem as a literary response to the book. Student reflects on what has been learned after reading and formulates ideas, opinions, and personal responses to text.
Content Standards: STATE GOAL 12: Understand the fundamental concepts, principles and interconnections of the life, physical and earth/space sciences.

B. Know and apply concepts that describe how living things interact with each other and with their environment. E.
12.B.1b Describe how living things depend on one another for survival. Know and apply concepts that describe the features and processes of the Earth and its resources. 12.E.1b Identify and describe patterns of weather and seasonal change.


The Christmas Blizzard by Helen Ketteman
Ice cube or cold pack Chart paper Word Wall of weather words Video on blizzards Implementation:


Opening of lesson: (Objectives, hook, behavior expectations) Warm-up Activity: Have students use their five senses to describe what snow tastes, looks, smells, sounds, and feels like. Give them examples and remind them to be creative. Teacher says: “Describe a blizzard. Oh, you said cold? Is that an observation or an inference? What is an observation? What is an inference? An observation is an act or instance of regarding attentively or watching.
(define in first grade terms) An inference is the process of deriving the strict logical consequences of assumed premises. (define in first grade terms)

Is windy an observation or inference? Is “a lot of snow” an observation or inference? Is “clouds collided together to make snow fall” an observation or inference? Explain the difference between an inference and an observation. An observation is something you can see, and an inference is something you think is happening or did happen but you do not see it. How can scientists use observations and inferences? Why do they use observations and make inferences? Can scientists make inferences without observations?” If possible, pass around an ice cube or a cold pack and ask the students to describe the sensation in their hand. (If students live in a warm climate ask them to imagine chopped ice.) Write down the words and phrases they use to describe a blizzard on a piece of chart paper for the whole class to see. This will make a mini word wall of weather and blizzard words. Example of words: cold, windy, snow, blurry, wet, freezing, icy, scary, drifting snow, snow piles, hills, slippery, etc. Teacher says: “We will use these words to write poems about blizzards. There are many things to say about blizzards so I will put you into groups and you will collectively make “time line poems.” The first part of the poem will detail the thoughts and reactions of a person as the snow first begins to fall. The second part of the poem will describe that person's experience during the blizzard, and the third should be after the blizzard has passed. We will read about different people’s experiences with a blizzard in this book (hold it up to model it), The Christmas Blizzard by Helen Ketteman, and each group will write a poem about the experience with the blizzard from different perspectives. Each person has a different perspective, or view on an event. Some students are not familiar with blizzards, so once again you help them think about what to write as you describe each stage and point to which line (on the paper) describes each stage. Teacher says, “Think about what it might look like when you first see the snow start to fall. When the snow is falling a lot and you have a hard time seeing things outside, what is that like? After the snow has fallen, everything is covered in white.”

Procedures: Include critical thinking questions and accommodations for individual needs Activity: Students should read the information about one person's experience (groups and person is determined by teacher) during the blizzard from the book, The Christmas Blizzard by Helen Ketteman. Students will put into groups of three four (strategically grouped) to read to one another and create the poem. The teacher assigns each group which person to focus on. The students will write (or draw depending on ability level) what the person was doing before the blizzard. Was this person aware of the blizzard or excited to see the snow falling? The teacher will ask guiding questions as needed for each stage to the individual groups. ELL strategies: If students cannot read or have a language barrier, they can read a book in their native language and response by drawing each of their lines rather than writing. Students should start creating the time line poems after they write or draw what their assigned person was doing before, during, and after the blizzard. Re-explain what the students should do as needed. (“The time line poem will consist of three parts and be written from the perspective of one of the people in the book. The first part of the poem will detail the thoughts and reactions of a person as the snow first begins to fall. The second part of the poem will describe that person's experience during the blizzard, and the third should be after the blizzard has passed.”) Often, students find it hard to get started writing the poem, so you may want to provide a first line for the poem, such as Snow _________the world. (covers, blankets, falls on, wipes out, beautifies, disguises). For each of the three parts of the time line poem, the students can fill in the blank with a different word, illustrating the change in perspective as the snow continues to fall.

Encourage students to borrow from the word wall to help them describe the blizzard (chilly, cold, windy, cloudy, blurry, wet). Tell students that they can combine words and phrases from the word wall. ELL strategies: -use pictures of blizzards and elements related to blizzards -point to words and pictures as you describe them -send note home to parents about what is happening in the classroom -allow students to code-switch and speak in their native language -students should be able to read stories in native language and write in native language -define key vocabulary for students like “blurry” and define instruction words like “perspective,” “inference,” “observation.” -students should be allowed to orally explain or draw their lines of the poem.

Summary/Closing: After the students create the poem, have them consider how the tone of the poem changes as the snow falls. What is this person in the poem worried about? What does the person experience during the storm? How do they feel after the blizzard is gone? Connect the tone and descriptions of the blizzard to a thunderstorm or heat wave. Tell the students they will be comparing the different forms of severe weather over the next few weeks. Student Assessment: The participation in discussion and creation of the poem will serve as an assessment of how much the students know and how confident they are about their knowledge.

Rationale for Literacy in the Weather unit: The strategies I chose to use in this lesson, writing a literary response in the form of a poem, have partner reading and a group discussion, give students assistance with the structure of the writing, and have the class create a poem together explaining their reasoning for each line. These strategies focus on the writing and reading element of this lesson. It pushes students to identify similes and metaphors, gives them exposure to poetry and sensory words, and encourages them to use critical thinking skills and analyze what blizzards are really like. I selected these strategies because they fit well with my purpose in this lesson. I wanted students to emotionally tap into how a blizzard affects people, so they can make personal connections and get more engaged with the topic. The students benefit from these strategies because they get to practice taking turns and reading in groups. They practice their critical thinking skills and try to expand their vocabulary using a variety of sensory words. The students practice engaging in a discussion in an appropriate manner (not jumping up and down, talking over people, and remembering to raise your hand to talk). Students also practice making poems and using similes and metaphors in their writing. They are practicing spelling and get a chance to make comparisons between different types of weather.

Post Lesson Reflection: Student Interest

Student Motivation

Teacher Knowledge

Teacher Organization

Teacher Articulation

Student Understanding


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