Reading timelines and maps
We’ll learn about the discoveries from many scientists. Where and when did they? Using maps and timelines allows us to place these people in their geographical context.
In physics we follow the development of ideas from thinkers in ancient Greece, to Italy, Denmark and England.
In Biology, we’ll follow ideas from Gregor Mendel, father of genetics, to Charles Darwin, who developed the theory of evolution, to Watson and Crick (DNA)
In units on Astronomy we cover the development of maps themselves – including the often-misunderstood Mercator projection.
The scientific revolution
In the astronomy unit, as we consider changing views of the solar system, from medieval to modern views, we take the students though the scientific revolution, from Copernicus and Galileo up to modern times.
Spindles (cell replication)
During metaphase the cell builds a spindle apparatus – a network of thin protein fibers stretching from one side of the cell to the other. Why is it called a spindle? From history we learn about the tool used to spin threads into cloth, so they can understand the visual-verbal analogy.
Genetic diseases: Sickle cell anemia.
Many students don’t know what sickles are, so they don’t understand the name of this genetic disorder. I show them the agricultural tool, and mention it’s use in flags, so they can understand the visual-verbal analogy.
Literacy and ELA connections
Common Core State Standards Connections: ELA/Literacy
RST.6-8.1 Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of science and technical texts.
RST.6-8.7 Integrate quantitative or technical information expressed in words in a text with a version of that information expressed visually (e.g., in a flowchart, diagram, model, graph, or table).
WHST.6-8.1 Write arguments focused on discipline content.
WHST.6-8.2 Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas, concepts, and information through the selection, organization, and analysis of relevant content.
WHST.6-8.7 Conduct short research projects to answer a question (including a self-generated question), drawing on several sources and generating additional related, focused questions that allow for multiple avenues of exploration.
WHST.6-8.8 Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, using search terms effectively; assess the credibility and accuracy of each source; and quote or paraphrase the data and conclusions of others while avoiding plagiarism and following a standard format for citation.
WHST.6-8.9 Draw evidence from informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.