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Upper El (Mr. D): Natural Selection

This week we started new stories and continued our quest to explore the topic of Life by diving into Darwinian Evolution.

For our stories, we started by thinking about what details are most important when writing? Characters? Setting? Plot? The answer is that they are all important! But, some details make reading a story special. I asked our awesome group to think about what we can do with writing that we can't do with movies or tv?

We thought for a bit and started to share.

Inner Thoughts!

Sense of smell!

We wrote a bunch of ideas on the board. These are the details we can come back to while writing to make our stories jump off the page for our readers.

On Tuesday, we started with a discussion on evolution. What does everyone already know? Or, think they know? What does evolution mean to us?

There was some great sharing happening, and I called attention to the fact that all the ideas shared seem to indicate that we have control over the process of evolution. We paused there, and we revisited the conversation on Thursday.

But, for the rest of our Tuesday time, I introduced a new project. We've only just begun, but the project will explore the concept of Natural Selection through a "game" I made up.

For the first part, students chose an animal and began doing some research on that animal. They need to learn about their habitat, how their animal deals with the change of seasons, what they eat, and then think about the features of their animal that make them well suited for their environment.

Then, finally, on Thursday, we continued our evolution discussion by looking at images of Fossils, Homologous Structures, and Embryology. Everyone had great questions and thoughts to add. We then went into learning about Natural Selection as the mechanism behind evolution.

Our project will further explore Natural Selection by putting their chosen animal through the process!

I was a little lacking with my photo taking this week, but we finally spent an afternoon outside for our class at the amphitheater! So grateful that we have that opportunity.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

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