The Structures of Life by bac0A150

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									Erika A. Dagress                                               Final Project

August 22, 2010                                                Diversity of Fishes

                            The Structures of Life:

             An Extension Fish Structures and Behavior Study

       I teach second and third grade science as a cluster teacher in a NYC
public school, and am responsible for the FOSS kit-based unit called Structures
of Life in third grade (a brief summary of the unit can be found at
http://www.fossweb.com/modules3-6/StructuresofLife/index.html ). In the
past, I have enhanced that curriculum with mini comparative anatomy studies
of other animals that I keep in the classroom. For example, the unit includes
studies of the structures and behavior of crayfish and Bess beetles and I have
extended those comparisons to include studies of another water-dweller (red-
eared slider turtles, which are reptiles, not crustaceans), and another
arthropod (walking stick insects). I find that these studies build on my
students’ enthusiasm and curiosity for working with live animals while
scaffolding and reinforcing the scientific language introduced in the mandated
FOSS curriculum for my students, who are predominantly English Language
Learners (46% “Limited English Proficient” in 2008-2009;
https://www.nystart.gov/publicweb-rc/2009/c6/AOR-2009-
331500010024.pdf ). For this course I have designed another mini comparative
anatomy study on fish (which, like the turtles and unlike the arthropods, are
vertebrates).

       The teaching standards that apply to the FOSS Structures of Life unit are
articulated in the New York City Department of Education’s K-8 Science Scope
and Sequence, as copied here
(http://schools.nyc.gov/Documents/STEM/Science/K8ScienceSS.pdf ); the
corresponding number designations refer to “the Major Understandings taken
from the New York State Elementary Science Core Curriculum, available at
http://www.emsc.nysed.gov/ciai/mst/pub/elecoresci.pdf. LE = Living
Environment, Standard 4):

            Describe how all living things grow, take in nutrients, breathe,
            reproduce and eliminate waste. (LE 5.1a, b)

            Describe how plants must be adapted to their environment in
            order to survive. (LE 3.1b, c; LE 5.2a; LE 6.1f)
                  • Structures and their functions (e.g., roots, leaves, flowers,
                  etc.)


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                  • Adaptations of these structures may include variations in
                  size, shape, thickness, color, smell, and texture.
                  • Plants change as the seasons change
                  • Seed dispersal

            Describe how animals must be adapted to their environment in
            order to survive: (LE 3.1a, c; LE 5.2b, d, e, f; LE 6.1f)
                  • Structures and their functions (e.g., wings, legs, fins,
                  scales, feathers, fur, etc.)
                  • Understand that animals respond to change in the
                  environment (e.g., heart rate, eye blinking, shivering)
                  • Animals change as seasons change
                        – Hibernation
                        – Migration (i.e., moving from place to
                        place to meet needs) including human

            Recognize that traits of living things are both: (LE 2.1a, b)
                 • Inherited (color of flowers, eye color).
                 • Learned/acquired (riding a bicycle, having scars)

This fish study would address those standards involving animal structures and
functions, adaptations and response to change in the environment. I have
outlined the study in terms of five “big ideas” for my third graders. All third
grade classes come to my science lab for two 45-minute periods per week, and
this study will cover about ten periods (or five weeks) plus 1-2 class trips with
the classroom teacher. In the lesson plans designed for the study children
work in different groupings, including individual, partner, small group and
whole class work.

   1. Fish are vertebrates

         a. Curriculum Link: In the FOSS unit students are introduced to
            the crayfish as an invertebrate with a hard exoskeleton. In
            introducing this idea I contrast the crayfish with vertebrates such
            as ourselves, having an internal skeleton with a backbone. In the
            extension turtle study that I designed students have an
            opportunity to observe turtle shell specimens and see how the
            backbone is fused with the bony carapace.

         b. Objective: Students will understand that animals belong to one of
            two large groups: vertebrates or invertebrates. They will be able to
            identify some different types of vertebrates, including fish. They
            will understand that the function of the backbone is to protect the

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   spinal cord and support body weight, and can recognize and
   reproduce the backbone as a series of interconnected vertebrae.

c. Scope and Sequence:
        Day One:
        Students explore the question “What is a backbone?” as they
        spend one class observing and comparing available skeleton
        specimens of the five vertebrate groups (Reptiles – snake,
        lizard and turtle specimens, Amphibians- toad specimen,
        Fish – bony fish specimen, Birds- pigeon specimen,
        Mammals – human model). In the mini-lesson the whole
        class revisits the idea that all animals can be sorted into two
        groups, vertebrates and invertebrates, and we reflect on
        which group the animals we have already studied belong to.
        I introduce the objective, which is to become familiar with
        the function of the backbone and to compare and contrast
        the backbones of different vertebrate groups, as well as the
        worksheet and flow of the class.

         During worktime students will be grouped into 4 or 5 small
         groups for the purpose of working through different
         “centers”, however each child will complete their work
         independently (see Appendix 1, “Fish are Vertebrates” for
         the worksheet provided). A center is simply one vertebrate
         skeleton specimen with an id label and a set of hand lenses
         and pencils. The first “center” will consist of 15 minutes
         with one vertebrate skeleton specimen, during which the
         student sketches the skeleton and backbone in some detail.
         After that, students will cycle through 3-4 other centers for 5
         minutes each, during which time each student compares the
         skeleton to the other specimens. The class concludes with a
         whole-group share during which students contribute their
         observations of what makes the backbones of different
         vertebrates the same (a series of inter-connected vertebrae)
         and different (relative size of different vertebrae, presence or
         absence of a tail, number of vertebrae, etc..) and why the
         ‘backbone’ should be a series of smaller bones rather than
         one large structure (to allow for both protection and
         movement).


                                                              Page 3 of 26
          Day Two:
          In the following class, students use what they have learned
          through observation to create a model backbone using model
          magic and found materials (such as toothpicks, pasta or
          white pipe cleaners) to construct vertebrae. In the mini-
          lesson the whole class revisits what makes the backbones of
          different vertebrates similar and different and why
          backbones are important. I introduce the objective, which is
          to demonstrate what a backbone looks like and
          communicate what it does, as well as the materials available
          and expectations for finished work.

          During worktime, children will have a piece of cardstock on
          which to create and support their backbone model as well as
          access to a variety of materials which they can use to
          construct vertebrae (for example, various pasta shapes,
          model magic and styrofoam peanuts) and a spinal cord (for
          example, pipe cleaners, spaghetti and string). After they
          construct the back bone they have the option of drawing an
          outline of the animal represented around the backbone on
          the cardstock. All students are also expected to write an
          explanation of their model either directly on the cardstock or
          on a separate index card. The explanation should answer
          the questions, “what do the different parts of your model
          represent?” and “why does the vertebrate you represented
          have a backbone?”

d. Assessment and Evaluation:
   The worksheet for day one would only be used as an assessment
   for task completion, as follows:

Level 4   Exceeds             All sections of the worksheet are
          grade level          completed appropriately
                              3 or more similarities and differences
                               between backbone specimens are
                               included
                              Illustrations reflect observations, are
                               detailed and include labels that reflect
                               vocabulary introduced in the unit
Level 3   On grade level      All sections of the worksheet are
                               completed appropriately

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                             2 similarities and 2 differences between
                              backbone specimens are included
                             Illustrations reflect observations and
                              include labels
Level 2   Approaches         1-2 sections of the worksheet are
          grade level         incomplete
                             Only 1 similarity and 1difference
                              between backbone specimens are
                              included
                             Illustrations lack attention to detail
                              and/or do not include labels
Level 1   Significantly      2-3 sections of the worksheet are
          below grade         incomplete
          level              Comparison is limited to a similarity or a
                              difference, not both
                             Illustrations are not representative


The model constructed on day two would be assessed for content
understanding, as follows:

Level 4   Exceeds            Model represents the backbone as a
          grade level         series of interconnected vertebrae
                              arranged along the spinal cord with
                              attention to how the relative size and
                              shape of vertebrae vary from one end to
                              the other
                             Model includes an outline of the
                              vertebrate represented and/or labels for
                              the vertebrae, skull and other structures
                             Written explanation demonstrates
                              understanding of the structure and
                              function of a backbone and includes
                              vocabulary introduced in the unit
                              and/or reference to various vertebrate
                              groups
Level 3   On grade level     Model represents the backbone as a
                              series of interconnected vertebrae
                              arranged along the spinal cord
                             Written explanation demonstrates
                              understanding of the structure and
                              function of a backbone
Level 2   Approaches         Model represents the backbone as a
          grade level         series of interconnected vertebrae
                              arranged along the spinal cord

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                                  Written explanation demonstrates partial
                                   understanding
     Level 1   Significantly      Model does not accurately represent a
               below grade         backbone
               level              Written explanation is absent or lacks
                                   understanding of either the structure or
                                   function of the backbone




2. Fish have adapted to live in water

     a. Curriculum Link: In the FOSS Structures of Life unit students
        are introduced to the idea that organisms have structures and
        behaviors that help them to survive in their habitat
        (http://lhsfoss.org/scope/folio/pdfs/Structures_Life_matrix.pdf).
        For example, a crayfish has pincers to defend itself and capture
        food and defends its territory from other crayfish. A Bess beetle
        has antenna to sense its environment, mandibles to chew dead
        wood and seeks shelter in dark places.

     b. Objective: Students will understand that fish have adapted to
        survive in the water, and will know some of the ways fish can
        breathe, eat and move in their habitat. As students construct their
        understanding of fish they will also have questions about fish that
        they will record for future exploration.

     c. Scope and Sequence

        Day One:

        First, the class explores the general characteristics of fish via a
        whole class discussion of the question “What is a fish?” As
        children share prior knowledge I will facilitate discussion and chart
        their responses in a web with the question in the middle. I will
        introduce the objective for the day, which is to research and record
        the characteristics of fish using available resources, as well as to
        collect questions about fish that have not been answered. I will
        demonstrate the science notebook format for the day’s work, with
        the title “What is a fish?” and the subheadings “What I learned”
        and “What I wondered.”


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During worktime resources such as our discussion chart,
classroom library books, fish models (I have a model perch) and
specimens (skeleton from vertebrate lesson), or fish tank, photo
cards, etc... will be available. Students are expected to use
resources independently and/or in partnerships to learn more and
record what they learn in their science notebooks. At the end of
the period, students are given 5-10 minutes to record what they
“wonder,” or want to know. Share will consist of a brief
volunteering of what students found out followed by a brief
volunteering of what they want to know. After the period, I will
review student notebooks to choose questions suitable for future
inquiry lessons (see #4, “Ichthyologists explore the questions they
have about fish”).

Day Two:

Next, a technology lesson is devoted to specifically exploring how
fish breathe, feed and move in water using the three related pages
with accompanying videos on the museum’s website
(http://www.amnh.org/exhibitions/permanent/ocean/03_oceanlif
e/bi_eating.php ). First, I will facilitate a whole class discussion in
which students share either prior knowledge or information they
researched in the last class about how fish breathe, feed and move.
Discussion will include comparisons to how other animals we have
studied in the unit breathe, eat and move (for example, crayfish
breathe with gills underwater whereas turtles must surface to
breathe air through nostrils). If laptops are not available for use in
the lab, I will then project each of the three related web pages for
selected reading and video viewing together as a class. Preferably,
if laptops are available for use in the lab, I will set-up laptops in
the three centers that students will cycle through during worktime
– one center each for breathing, eating and moving (while I
circulate around the room).

During worktime, students visit each center for 5-10 minutes to
explore the related website video and an activity. At the feeding
center, students will use turkey basters and a tub of water to
explore how rapidly creating an empty space creates a vacuum
that water will rush into. By placing small items such as sprinkles
or glitter in the water and seeing how they get sucked up along
with the water, I hope students can better understand how suction

                                                            Page 7 of 26
   allows fish to capture prey. At the breathing center, my model
   perch will be available with small balls of silly putty or play dough.
   By pushing the modeling material against the gills of the model
   perch and feeling the resulting striations I hope students can
   appreciate how the many folds in the gills increase surface area for
   oxygen absorption. At the movement center, two market fish
   specimens will be available for students to manipulate, one
   depressed body shape (such as a flounder or fluke) and one
   fusiform or compressed body shape. As students feel how the bone
   structure allows for movement they should begin to understand
   how the side-to-side movement of the caudal fin of the one fish
   propels it through the water whereas for the depressed fish it
   moves along the ocean floor. Alternatively, a tub of water and a
   piece of flat, wide flexible rubber (such as a small swimming
   flipper) can be provided for children to move through the water in
   different ways and experience how one angle allows the rubber to
   cut through the water and another angle creates resistance and
   push against the water. A brief verbal share at the end of the
   period will focus on the activities at each center, “What did the
   things you did at each center help you understand about how fish
   live in water?”

   Day Three:

   A follow-up field trip to the Milstein Hall of Ocean Life at the
   museum will be planned with the classroom teacher (I am not
   released from covering classes to go on field trips). I will provide a
   trip sheet (see Appendix 2, “Life in Water”) focused on the
   corresponding “Life in Water: Vertebrates” display as well as
   opportunities to explore the many types of water environments that
   fish have adapted to and record questions students have.

d. Assessment and Evaluation:
   The science notebook work for day one would only be used as an
   assessment for task completion, as follows:

Level 4   Exceeds             The page has appropriate headings and
          grade level          is numbered and dated accurately
                              6 or more accurate understandings
                               about fish have been recorded (via
                               writing and/or illustration)
                              4 or more questions have been recorded

                                                              Page 8 of 26
     Level 3   On grade level     The page has appropriate headings and
                                   is numbered and dated accurately
                                 4-5 understandings about fish have been
                                   recorded (via writing and/or illustration)
                                 2-3 questions have been recorded
     Level 2  Approaches         The page headings, number and date are
              grade level          attempted.
                                 2-3 understandings about fish have been
                                   recorded (via writing and/or illustration)
                                 1-2 questions have been recorded
     Level 1  Significantly      The page lacks headings, a number or
              below grade          the date
              level              Concepts about fish are absent or are
                                   misunderstood
                                 No questions have been recorded
        Days two and three will not be assessed at this time, however the
        content covered will be included in a quiz at the end of the study.

3. Ichthyologists observe fish closely and compare fish to each other

     a. Curriculum Link: In the FOSS Structures of Life unit students are
        introduced to the idea that the structures of different kinds of
        organisms share similarities and differences
        (http://lhsfoss.org/scope/folio/pdfs/Structures_Life_matrix.pdf).
        Through multiple observations students have learned the
        structures of the organisms we have studied in the unit, such as
        crayfish swimmerets and bristles or Bess beetle antennae and
        mandibles, and have observed or learned about the function of
        each.

     b. Objective: Through observation and comparison students will be
        able to identify different fish structures, their functions and
        variations of these structures among different fish.

     c. Scope and Sequence:

        Day One:

        Students will spend one period working in partnerships to observe
        a market fish specimen closely. In the mini-lesson I will pose the
        question, “What structures do fish have?” and as students share
        the structures they are already familiar with I will scaffold
        vocabulary accordingly (for example, if a student shares that fish

                                                                  Page 9 of 26
have a “tail”, I will introduce the vocabulary “caudal fin”) and we
will discuss the function of each structure. During this whole-
group discussion a large fish visual will be available for appropriate
labeling, either as a drawing on chart paper or as an overhead
reproduction of an image such as that found at
http://www.flmnh.ufl.edu/fish/Education/Diagrams/FishBodyPar
ts.html or
http://habitatnews.nus.edu.sg/guidebooks/marinefish/text/113.
htm. By the end of the mini-lesson the structures either shared or
explicitly taught should include:

              Upper and lower jaw
              Eye
              Gills
              Dorsal fin
              Pectoral fin
              Pelvic fin
              Anal fin
              Caudal fin (tail)
              Spines/ rays
              Scales
              Lateral line
After this lesson the vocabulary introduced will become a part of
our classroom word wall (for student reference), along with an
appropriate visual for each term.

During worktime students will share a market whole-fish specimen
with their partner. Available tools will include hand lenses, metric
rulers and balances. Students will be asked to observe the fish
closely, record their observations in illustration and writing, label
the structures and record any questions that they have. Although
they will observe the fish in partnerships each student will be
expected to record his or her observations on individual paper (see
Appendix 3 “Fish Observation”). At the end of the period students
will be asked to share observations of specific structures (for
example, instead of asking a question such as, “what color is your
fish,” I will ask a question such as “what color is your fish’s dorsal
fin”).

Day Two:

                                                          Page 10 of 26
Students will make individual fish prints using a different market
specimen in the next lesson. In the mini-lesson we will review the
structures introduced in the previous lesson using an overhead
projection of a blank diagram such as the one at
http://www.enchantedlearning.com/subjects/fish/label/labelfish.
shtml , which we will label in a brief interactive writing exercise
(this allows students to practice finding and using the appropriate
vocabulary on the classroom word wall). Next, I will introduce the
Japanese art of fish printing, model how it is done using a
“procedures” chart and set up expectations for handling materials,
clean-up, etc...

During worktime students will use the “Chokusetsu-ho” method of
fish printing. Each student will create his or her own fish print,
however students will work in pairs to execute the procedures. I
will use the methods and suggestions described in the Japanese
fish printing lesson at http://artsedge.kennedy-
center.org/content/3436/ ), from which I have directly copied the
following procedure:

   [Fish] Must be clean and dry.
   Clean slimy substance from scales with salt and vinegar,
    alcohol, or squeeze a lemon over it and gently wipe. Be very
    careful of the scales.
   Lay fish on dry surface.
   Slowly and gently fan out any fins or tail.
   Plasticene clay may be placed under these to raise them, allow
    for better printing surface, and to hold the mouth open. You
    can hold it down by pushing straight pins into the clay.
   Apply any type of water-based ink to the fish with soft brush,
    sponge, or a foam brush.
   Apply gently but in all directions. Use a brush for some of the
    harder-to-define areas such as lips, etc.
   Place the paper over the inked fish hold with one hand so it
    does not move and gently press the paper down over the entire
    fish making sure you have pressed all parts.
   Peel back the paper slowly starting at one end and continuing
    across.
   Get an adult to help, or have the students work in pairs, as it is
    good to have someone hold onto the fish so it does not slip or
    slide.
   When you look at your print if you see a smudge it means either
    the paper or fish slipped.

                                                          Page 11 of 26
      If you see a blank spot it means you either did not ink well or
       did not press hard enough to transfer the ink.

   If there is time at the end of the period, I will ask students to share
   what they liked or found challenging about this activity.

   Day Three:

   Students work with a partner to compare the characteristics of
   their fish using the fish prints from the previous lesson, then each
   individual student records this comparison in a Venn diagram. In
   this way, each individual student will have had access to three
   distinct specimens by the end of this lesson strand: one from the
   fish observation, one from the fish print and now access to another
   student’s fish print. At this point in the FOSS Structures of Life
   unit students will have already had experience using Venn
   diagrams, so in the mini-lesson the whole-group will review by
   briefly working together on a Venn diagram chart comparing two
   fish prints provided by the teacher. Entries might include
   observations such as “both fish have caudal fins” or “fish A has a
   round caudal fin” and “fish B has a pointed caudal fin”. During
   worktime students will work in partnerships to share and compare
   the structures of their fish using their fish prints, however each
   student will complete his or her own Venn diagram (see Appendix
   4, “Ichthyologists Compare Fish”). At the end of the period student
   partners will share what made their fish the same or different.

d. Assessment and Evaluation:
   Days one and two were an introduction to the structures, so day
   three will serve as the assessment. Students’ Venn diagrams will
   be assessed as follows:

Level 4    Exceeds            All three sections of the Venn diagram
           grade level         are appropriately completed
                              Each section of the Venn diagram
                               contains 6 or more accurate
                               observations
                              10 or 11 of the eleven structures
                               introduced were included

Level 3    On grade level     All three sections of the Venn diagram
                               are appropriately completed
                              Each section of the Venn diagram
                                                              Page 12 of 26
                                   contains 4-5 accurate observations
                                  7-9 of the structures introduced were
                                   included

     Level 2   Approaches         All three sections of the Venn diagram
               grade level         are attempted
                                  Each section of the Venn diagram
                                   contains 2-3 observations
                                  4-6 of the structures introduced were
                                   included
     Level 1   Significantly      Some sections of the Venn diagram are
               below grade         incomplete or inappropriately completed
               level              Sections of the diagram only contain 1 or
                                   2 observations
                                  3 or fewer of the structures introduced
                                   were included



4. Ichthyologists explore the questions they have about fish.

     a. Curriculum Link: The majority of the scientific process work done
        in the FOSS Structures of Life unit involves observation and
        comparison of structures and behaviors, including observation
        over time
        (http://lhsfoss.org/scope/folio/pdfs/Structures_Life_matrix.pdf).
        At the end of the unit there is one opportunity for ‘conducting a
        systematic observation.’ However, in my extension studies I have
        emphasized how scientists answer questions not only through
        observation and research, but also through experimentation. For
        example, at this point in the unit I expect to have already set up
        simple experiments based on student questions regarding
        territorial behavior in crayfish or food choice in walking stick
        insects.

     b. Objective: Students will be able to make predictions, carry out
        simple experimental procedures, collect data and compare results
        to predictions in highly scaffolded simple experiments based on
        student inquiry.

     c. Scope and Sequence:


                                                                Page 13 of 26
Questions collected from students (either as they recorded them in
part 2 (days 1 and 3) or part 3 (day 1) or as recorded in my
anecdotal notes in subsequent classes) are culled for those suitable
for inquiry work. Examples of such questions might include:

     What foods do fish prefer?

     How do fish react to other fish (of same/different gender,
      species, size, etc…)?

     How does water temperature affect fish behavior?

Different classes will explore different questions posed by the
students in that class (through a question, prediction, data
collection and conclusion process) but results are shared
throughout the grade community via experimental results posters.
For each experiment set up, a student question will be reworded
and introduced for appropriate inquiry work. Students will be
asked to record the question and a prediction in their science
notebook. I will introduce a procedure with controlled variables
and students will work together to follow the procedure and collect
data in partnerships or small groups. Data will be pooled with the
whole class, and conclusions will be discussed together. Finally,
students will be expected to compare the class results with their
original prediction.

For example, a student question such as ‘what do guppies eat’ can
be presented as ‘what foods do guppies prefer’. Students can make
a prediction about which food guppies will choose from an offering
such as lettuce leaves, insect larvae, fish flakes and fish pellets. I
can set up the procedure in a way that controls for variables such
as food amount, water temperature, container size, etc... and a
student partnership can record results for the one guppy that they
are responsible for. When results for all of the partnerships in the
class are shared a pattern is likely to emerge, from which students
can draw a conclusion that they can compare to their original
predictions (for example, ‘I thought guppies would prefer lettuce,
but most guppies ate larvae’ or ‘I predicted that guppies would
prefer lettuce, and most of them did prefer lettuce’ or ‘I predicted
guppies would prefer lettuce, but most guppies ate nothing, maybe
they were not hungry’).


                                                          Page 14 of 26
     d. Assessment and Evaluation:

        Ideally, each class will conduct two experiments based on student
        inquiry. Assessment should be based on notebook work for the
        second experiment, as follows:


     Level 4   Exceeds            Experimental question is accurately
               grade level         recorded
                                  Prediction based on prior knowledge or
                                   other reasoning is recorded
                                  Experimental data is recorded in an
                                   accurate and organized fashion
                                  Conclusion is compared to initial
                                   prediction
     Level 3   On grade level     Experimental question is accurately
                                   recorded
                                  A prediction is recorded
                                  Experimental data is recorded in an
                                   accurate and organized fashion
                                  A conclusion is made, but not compared
                                   to the initial prediction
     Level 2   Approaches          Only three of the following are done:
               grade level        Experimental question is accurately
                                   recorded
                                  A prediction is recorded
                                  Experimental data is recorded in an
                                   accurate and organized fashion
                                  A conclusion is made, but not compared
                                   to the initial prediction
     Level 1   Significantly      Notebook work does not reflect the
               below grade         question explored or the data collected
               level              Student fails to either make a prediction
                                   or draw a conclusion from the class
                                   results


5. Biologists compare fish to other animals

     a. Curriculum Link: In the FOSS Structures of Life unit, students
        compare and contrast the structures and behaviors of the different
        organisms studied
        (http://lhsfoss.org/scope/folio/pdfs/Structures_Life_matrix.pdf).


                                                                 Page 15 of 26
b. Objective: Students will be able to compare and contrast the
   structures of fish to other organisms incorporating the new
   vocabulary and concepts taught.

c. Scope and Sequence:

   Day One:

   Students compare a fish to another animal using a Venn diagram.
   As students already have experience completing Venn diagrams
   the mini-lesson will be a brief interactive activity filling out a Venn
   diagram chart comparing a model perch to a classroom turtle.
   Entries might include observations such as ‘the fish and the turtle
   are both vertebrates’ or ‘the fish has five types of fins’ and ‘the
   turtle has four webbed feet,’ and as the teacher I will facilitate
   incorporation of all introduced vocabulary. During worktime the
   students will work independently to compare a fish to a different
   animal (see Appendix 5, “Biologists Compare Fish to Other
   Animals” Venn diagram). The other animal could be a live
   classroom animal that we have studied (crayfish, Bess beetles,
   walking stick insects or red-eared sliders), an animal represented
   on a photo card or a student’s pet. However, at this point each
   child should be working independently, so I would discourage
   partners from picking the same animal for comparison.

   Alternate:

   Classroom teachers could take their class on a trip to the
   aquarium where students can compare a fish to another aquatic
   animal (such as a walrus, dolphin, octopus, marine isopod, etc…)
   and compare two different aquatic habitats to each other. I would
   provide two data collection sheets and a blank Venn diagram for
   student use (see Appendix 6).

d. Assessment and Evaluation:

   Assessment of the Venn diagram comparing a fish to another
   animal (either in class or from an aquarium trip) would be similar
   to that of the Venn diagram comparing two fish:

Level 4   Exceeds             All three sections of the Venn diagram
          grade level          are appropriately completed


                                                              Page 16 of 26
                                        Each section of the Venn diagram
                                         contains 6 or more accurate
                                         observations
                                        10- 12 of the structures taught
                                         (backbone, caudal fin, scales, etc…) were
                                         included

         Level 3    On grade level      All three sections of the Venn diagram
                                         are appropriately completed
                                        Each section of the Venn diagram
                                         contains 4-5 accurate observations
                                        7-9 of the structures taught were
                                         included

         Level 2    Approaches          All three sections of the Venn diagram
                    grade level          are attempted
                                        Each section of the Venn diagram
                                         contains 2-3 observations
                                        4-6 of the structures taught were
                                         included
         Level 1    Significantly       Some sections of the Venn diagram are
                    below grade          incomplete or inappropriately completed
                    level               Sections of the diagram only contain 1 or
                                         2 observations
                                        3 or fewer of the structures taught were
                                         included


The end of this fish study may also include a “quiz” with tasks such as labeling
structures in a fish diagram, comparing an experimental result with a
prediction, or identifying three ways fish are adapted to live in water. I would
determine whether or not to give a quiz based on the volume of classwork
generated and quality of anecdotal notes taken for my assessment by the end
of the study for most students.



       In future years I may wish to extend this study further, time and funding
permitting, to include a study of the life cycle of a local fish with the “ Trout in
the Classroom” project
(http://www.nyc.gov/html/dep/html/environmental_education/trout_in_the_c
lassroom.shtml) and/or a trip to the Cold Spring Hatchery
(http://www.cshfha.org as recommended by AMNH science seminar classmate
Mary Agramonte).
                                                                        Page 17 of 26
Appendices:

1. “Fish are vertebrates” handout

2. “Life in Water” trip sheet

3. “Fish Observation” handout

4. “Ichthyologists Compare Fish” Venn diagram

5. “Biologists Compare Fish to Other Animals” Venn diagram

6. Data collection sheets and Venn diagrams for aquarium trip (3 pages)




                                                                   Page 18 of 26
Name: _____________________________ Class: ______________ Date: _____________



                             Fish are vertebrates

What is the first vertebrate you are observing today? ____________________

Draw the skeleton and label the parts you know (for example, the skull, feet,
fins, wings, etc…). Then take a closer look at the back bone using a hand lens
and draw a close-up of the vertebrae:

            Skeleton                             Backbone




What are the other vertebrates you observed? ___________________,
__________________, ____________________ and _____________________.



What are you noticing that makes their backbones the same?

______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________

What are you noticing that makes their backbones different?

______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________


                                                                      Page 19 of 26
Name: _____________________________ Class: ______________ Date: _____________

                                “Life in Water” Trip Sheet

Visit the “Life in Water: Vertebrates” display in the Milstein Hall of Ocean Life. Read as
much as you can with a partner and watch the videos about how fish eat, breathe and
move. Think about what you remember from class in the science lab and the activities we
did:

1. What is something you have learned about how fish eat in water?

__________________________________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________________________________

2. What is something you have learned about how fish breathe in water?

__________________________________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________________________________

3. What is something you have learned about how fish move in water?

__________________________________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________________________________

Now walk around the ecosystem dioramas (coral reefs, sea floor, kelp forests, mangrove
forests, polar seas, estuaries, continental shelf and deep sea). Choose one to learn about in
more detail. Imagine you are one of the fish that live there:

What ecosystem did you pick? _______________________________________

What kind of fish are you? ___________________________________________

How or what do you eat?
__________________________________________________________________________________________

How do you breathe?
__________________________________________________________________________________________

How do you swim? What parts of your body do you use to move?
__________________________________________________________________________________________
__________________________________________________________________________________________

                        What are you still wondering about fish?

                 Write any questions you have on the back of the page.
                                                                                 Page 20 of 26
Ichthyologist: ______________________________ Class: ___________ Date: _________

                                 Fish Observation

Make sure to label the following structures on your illustration:

Upper jaw     lower jaw   eye   gills   dorsal fin   pectoral fin         pelvic fin

      Anal fin     caudal fin (tail)    lateral line scales         spines or rays




I observed that:

______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________

I wondered:

______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________


                                                                           Page 21 of 26
Ichthyologist: ___________________________________   Class: ______________________ Date: __________________

                                       Ichthyologists Compare Fish

      ____________________________________                       ____________________________________




                                                                                                Page 22 of 26
Biologist: ___________________________________      Class: ______________________ Date: __________________

                                 Biologists Compare Fish to Other Animals

      ____________________________________                      ____________________________________




                                                                                               Page 23 of 26
      Biologist: ______________________________________ Class: __________________________ Date: ______________

                                                  Aquarium trip

      Collect data on one fish and one other animal:

                                     Fish: ________________________        Animal: ______________________
Vertebrate or invertebrate?

Structures for movement


Structures for eating


Structures for breathing


Body covering

Structures for sensing the
environment


Other structures observed
(such as structures used for
defense)




      Now use the data you have collected to compare the two animals using a Venn diagram.

                                                                                                   Page 24 of 26
        Collect data on two different water habitats that you observe at the aquarium:

                                       Habitat 1: ________________________   Habitat 2: _______________________
Saltwater or freshwater?


Light



Temperature



Animals observed




Plants observed




Other Observations:




        Now use the data you have collected to compare the two habitats using a Venn diagram.


                                                                                                     Page 25 of 26
Biologist: ____________________________________   Class: __________________________ Date: ______________



                        Comparing __________________________________

______________________________________                        ______________________________________




                                                                                             Page 26 of 26

								
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