How do you read like a scientist?

October 19, 2017

Eureka! Teaching literacy through science is anything but a crazy experiment.

Ready-To-Use Annotation Activities for Science

Literacy doesn’t stop at the Hogwarts’ gate or the border to Oz. The educators at Britannica Digital Learning have designed the following activities to make science lit for hungry brains of every level.

Each activity has been created to work with the resources that you already use in your classroom or with Britannica’s newest classroom tool, LaunchPacks: Science. You can get free 60-day access now by taking a Packs: Science free trial, or you can use the activity, questions, and free, downloadable graphic organizer with your own resources.


Elementary Level Activity: Climate Connections

Overview: Students will make observations, inferences, and questions using the see-think-wonder graphic organizer and an engaging image.Students will then research answers to their questions by using informational text, images, and video.
Suggested Resources:
Strategy: See-Think-Wonder
Activity: Begin by sharing the image. Ask students to write down everything they see in the image in the “see” column. Then ask students to write down in the “think” column what they think about the image and/or what they think is happening in the image. Next, ask students to write down in the “wonder” column the questions they have about the image.  After the students have developed their questions, have them use the content in the pack Global Warming and Climate Change to help them understand the concept and answer student-generated questions.
Suggested Questions:
SEE
  • What do you SEE in the image?
  • What key details can you pull from the image?
THINK
  • What do you think is happening in the image?
  • Where do you think the photograph was taken?
  • What do you think is happening around the image that is not captured in this photograph?
  • What inferences can you make?
WONDER
  • What questions do you have about this image?
  • Where do you think you would find answers to your questions?
  • What key words would you use to research your questions?
Possible Extension: Ask students to continue using their graphic organizer to write down details, inferences, and questions they have from the text, images, and videos found in the pack.

 High Level Activity: Vocab Matters

Overview: Students will read through text to find new or unfamiliar vocabulary to help them understand the meaning of the words through dictionary definitions and contextual clues in preparation for an upcoming lab experiment.
Suggested Resources:
Strategy: Vocabulary Front-loading
Activity: In preparation for an upcoming lab experiment, ask students to read through an article or articles in the pack The Changes in Matter (6-12) or The Changes in Matter (Grades 9-12) and identify at least five new or unfamiliar vocabulary words. Using the annotation tools and Quick Click Dictionary, students can highlight the new/unfamiliar word, annotate the definition, and provide observations about the context clues that help to indicate the meaning.
Suggested Questions:
  • What words are new to you in this text?
  • What words around the unfamiliar word can help you understand the word’s meaning?
  • How will you remember the word in the future?
  • Where would you expect to find this word in the future?
  • If you find this word in your upcoming lab, how would it be used in a sentence?
Possible Extension: Ask students to print out the vocabulary annotations to take to the lab experiment. This will help equip them with a better understanding of the processes conducted throughout the lab.
Looking for more ways to weave literacy skills into your science class? Register for our upcoming webinar and walk away with reading strategies for daily science lessons.