As part of our entomology unit, students choose an insect that negatively impacts humans in at least one area of our daily lives: agriculture & horticulture, disease, economic hardship or nuisance.
Using Google Classroom, each student receives a blank Google Draw document and has artistic freedom to design their poster as long as the research requirements are met. I am able to check their work and add comments/corrections as they are doing their research and give real time feedback.
This is the handout with the requirements and for fun, we usually do a draft pick format to select insects.
On the first day of school as part of our advisory period, we gather the 6th graders together (about 40 students) and take them outside to do this ice breaker as a whole class. The 5 advisors model how to do this activity and then we hand each student a card and allow them to mingle and mix for about 10-15 minutes.
Strike a Pose
I am not really sure what the name of this activity is, so I just call it “strike a pose” – if you know what it is, please let me know in the comments so I can update it 🙂
This is also a really fun large group activity where the kids get to run around outside and make different poses. Start off with everyone just mingling around, and then you call out a “pose” for them to strike. When starting this activity, use multiples that total the number of students you have so that no one is left out in the first few rounds. For example, it you have 40 students, you can do poses that need a pair of students, a group of 4, a group of 5, etc. Then, after a few rounds, you pick a number that does not fit evenly. Mix up the groupings randomly, they have to figure out how many people to complete the pose. The students that don’t pair up with someone, will then sit out. You can keep going until you have a handful of students left or restart at any time. This is really fun and the kids will grab anyone near them to complete the pose!
Examples of Poses:
Single: Statue of Liberty, Michael Jackson, Spider Man, Hulk, a bowler
This is a fun and creative activity to tie all of the following concepts together into one lesson: DNA sequencing & transcription, mRNA translation, amino acid codons & proteins, genotype, phenotype, recessive & dominant alleles & traits.
Students will help solve a crime based on DNA evidence left on a lollipop at the crime scene. There are 3 versions of the same scenario that will identify 3 different criminals so you can use them for 3 classes – this avoids having the kids tell the next class who the suspect is ;). Each student will receive one of the 4 DNA samples – you can have students work individually, or have a group of students work on suspect 1, another on suspect 2, etc. (Sorry – I do not have an answer key to post)