What does this have to do with. . .

Every lesson that I teach revolves around an essential question. All teachers at my school do this, and students have become accustomed to having an essential question totalling relating to the day’s lesson.

Today, my EQ was, “How does water move through the hydrologic cycle?” Last week, we discussed the global distribution of water. Today’s lesson introduces the hydrologic cycle. I begin class with a warm up question, and after we discussed this (prior knowledge of the water cycle), I passed out a piece of string and 9 different colored beads to each student. We then proceeded to make a bracelet. Their instructions were to place the beads in any order they wanted on their bracelet.

I of course then heard lots of students asking me, “What does this have to do with the water cycle?” My response is always wait and see. Once everyone made their bracelet, I explained that each bead represented part of the water cycle. We then tried to figure out what each one represented. Once we had determined what each bead stood for, we wrote down in our notebooks this information. Finally, I asked each student to explain how water would move through the cycle in the order they placed the beans on their bracelet in.

I love this lesson because it really shows them that water can move in any direction through the cycle. There is no one correct process. It can “start” anywhere. Plus, students walk away with a bracelet – a visual representation of what they learned.

I’ve attached the visuals I use with this below the cut.

By Janelle

Space geek, science nerd extraordinaire. That's me! Want to know more, visit the About page.

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