Sunday, October 9, 2011

Habitats Menu

One of my largest science units of the year is on Georgia habitats, and I've always had a really hard time with this unit, because I had absolutely no resources for teaching these specific habitats.  I wanted to find a way to teach the habitats that involved multiple learning styles and gave students choices in the activities they completed.  To accomplish this, I created a Habitats Menu that students use to create a habitats book that I have used for the past several years, and my students and I absolutely love it!  I use the menus specifically for Georgia habitats, but they are designed so that they can be used for ANY habitat.

To make the books, I use 6 pieces of 12x18 construction paper for each student  (5 pages are for the habitats we study and 1 page is for the cover).  For the 5 habitats pages I hold the paper vertically and fold the bottom 1/4 up to make a pocket, and then I staple the sides of the pocket.  The height of the folded construction paper should be about the same height as a piece of notebook paper.

I add a cover page to each book that is the same height as the other pages, but it does not have a pocket.  I attach the pages together by punching 3 holes in the left side and tying the pages together with yarn.  I had my students decorate the cover of their book with a map of the habitats we are learning about.
Each page in the book is for each of the different habitats we learn about, and I have students keep all of their notes, research, and menu activities in the pocket of the specific habitat.
The menus are designed so that there are 3 appetizer activities, 3 main course activities, and 3 dessert activities that students can choose from.  I spend a week on each habitat and students have to complete 1 activity from each category.
The activities range from creating a collage, drawing a detailed picture, designing a cartoon, writing a report, writing a letter, to writing a song, and more.

This student wrote a report.

Collages are always the class favorite. I preprint a lot of pictures of specific animals.
I liked this student's cartoon.

The menu is on TpT, and if you'd like to see it just click on the link.


Kristen said...

I love how you sort the habitat notes like that, what a great idea. Thanks again for the habitat sharing--I'm grabbing your button as a small way of saying thank you :)

Mrs. Corbitt said...

I love your habitats folder. The Standards Coach at my school is always pushing using various fold-ables with our students but I think that your idea will be very useful. Thanks for sharing the great idea with us!!!

Kaya Rollo said...

Where did you find the map that you used for the cover?

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