So, how do you write your own science unit? It's not too hard. It just takes a little time, a few trips to the library, a few google searches and some creativity.
Step 1: Pick Your Topic
|Good books are the backbone to a great unit|
Step 2: Plan Your Days
Once you have your topic you need to plan out some specifics. How long are you going to spend on this topic? How many days a week are you going to devote to science? How many hands-on experiments or demonstrations do you want to include? Will there be book work too? Do you plan on doing any big projects? It is important to get these little details down first, as it will help you immensly when it comes time to actually write your lessons.
|Add other subjects into the mix too|
Step 3: Go to the Library
|Food projects are always a hit!|
|Lapbooks are a good way to review and solidify your material|
Now you are ready to really start planning. I like to do this part using the books, but online can be helpful too if that is more your style. You need to come up with a list of subtopics to fill out your weeks. I am currently working on a Rocks and Minerals unit. Some of my subtopics include the rock types, properties of minerals, rocks in the real world, etc. Your encyclopedia type books are helpful since most of the time they are already divided up. I like to cross reference all my books and mark down page numbers for similar topics in different books. You need to think about your overall goal. What do you want your kids to take away from this? What would the most important questions be? Those are your subtopics. Some topics will be covered in a day, some more than one.
Step 5: Find the Activities
|Doing is the best way to learn|
|Don't forget a few fun art projects!|
There are many sites that offer free unit lesson plan printables or you can make your own with Word or simply jot it all down in a notebook, but you need to get it all down somewhere. Get a spread sheet going with labeled days and the topics and assignments to go over that day. Enter all information you think you will need. Add pages to read aloud, pages to read silently, journal work, hands on activities or demonstrations. All of that information you gathered in step 5 needs to be organized and divided into the correct subtopics. It's up to you how in depth you go and how many activities you do.
And that's the basics. Now I am off to follow my own advice and finish writing my own units for the upcoming school year!
Big Family Friday