“Can we come back at lunch to build a diorama?” – 4th Grader
Our 4th graders have been focusing on the theme of “environments” all year long. Last semester, they conducted and finished up their “Kale Growth in Different Environments” experiment, where they tracked the growth of White Russian Kale and Scarlet Kale in 4 different garden environments (shade, full sun, fabric cover, and no weeding). We’ll be sharing their process and results soon! On their first day back after Winter Break, we talked about living versus non-living environmental components and went on a Sensory Hi-Lo Hunt in the garden for areas of highest and lowest moisture, light, wind, and temperature. This week we zoomed out and talked about how non-living components are important in shaping different terrestrial and aquatic environments on Earth. Since we don’t have the funds or time to go on a field trip around the world to see these different environments in person, students worked in groups of 4 to become experts on either a rainforest, desert, prairie, or pond ecosystem. They read their Life Lab fact sheet to find out the average rainfall, soil, types of animals and plants, and they had the chance to look through selected library books to get ideas for building a diorama of their environment of study from materials found in the garden. We didn’t have time to share at the end of class, but they had an opportunity to do a gallery walk to check out each others’ creations. You can also see them in person for a limited time on the 3rd floor for the elementary building!