Thursday, May 30, 2013

Menus -

       I belong to a listserve through NSTA and a teacher posted today asking for ideas about menus.  I've used menus for years, in all subjects.  My process is to create projects that meet both standards and the multiple intelligences.  I love MI theory.    It does take practice and when I started out years ago I would work with a partner on it.  Technology is not something I specifically build in, but all of the projects below were researched and written on the chromebook.  This specific project was designed to be used by a sub while I was away at the STEM conference and because of it, I needed something that would be productive, but independent.  It is the first time I've used it, and next year I'll probably tweak it to reflect our STEM magnet and include a build of some kind. Sometimes all of the projects are required, sometimes the starred projects are required, and then choices for several more are included.

     Rubrics for menus can be challenging and I constantly rework those.  I also work very hard to demand quality work from the kids. I hope this helps.

************************************************Painted Lady Butterfly***********************************
Logical- Mathematical - Just the statistics.  Create a science identification type page (an example would be pg. 30 in the bird book.  For the Painted Lady Butterfly please research and write about the following topics: Range (where in the world can they be found), Markings (what do they look like?) Length, Weight, Wingspan, Habitat, Food, Attractions (what attracts them to an area?).  If you come across any other statistics related to your butterfly feel free to add them in.  Illustrate your page. An example is to the right.(*** An entry from a science identification book was included, but removed for this because I couldn't get it to upload. ***)
Completed student work

Spatial - Draw a diagram of the caterpillar and label the parts of the caterpillar.  Draw a diagram of the butterfly and label the parts of the butterfly.

Completed Student work
*Linguistic - Metamorphosis means change. Our caterpillars are undergoing a metamorphosis to a butterfly.  Since you have begun school as a Kindergartner you too have undergone a metamorphosis.  Read Wings of Change.  How does this book relate to you changing from a small child to now, and from now through your teen years.  Write a 5 paragraph essay relating metamorphosis to three areas of your life.  Be sure to include a solid introduction and conclusion.

Musical - Use a children’s song (like Row Row Row your boat, or Twinkle Twinkle little star) to write a song about the life cycle of a butterfly.  Use scientific words to explain the process. While writing down lyrics think about how many syllables are in a line of the song, and then replace them with a similar number of syllables or words to explain the life cycle.  Type up your lyrics and be prepared to present your song.

Student work
Interpersonal -  With a partner, research the plants that can be found in a garden to attract a butterfly.  Find out information about each plant and what it needs to grow.  Draw a garden design to show how you might lay out those plants to attract butterflies.  Pay attention to how big those plants will grow and how much space or sunlight they will need.  Show the plants at a full grown size. A garden design is included below.(** A garden plan was included to show how a landscape architect might depict a butterfly garden.)

Intrapersonal - Poem  - Write a list of 25 words that could be used to describe the whole caterpillar- butterfly process.  Don’t just use adjectives, also use science words. Write a 4 stanza poem describing the change from caterpillar to butterfly.  Include powerful descriptions and visual images.
Completed student work - Daily observations and drawing.

*Naturalist - observations -  Create a log of your observations. Date each entry and include drawings when things change. Final draft in the booklet provided please.(**Each student had a caterpillar to record observations daily.**)

UPDATED:  The listserve made mention of a mastery classroom.  While that is not something I have researched, I have set up menus using this process. The mastery classroom is where you set up a minimum amount for a C, B, or A.  These do take a lot more time than this menu, but can be a great way to hold students accountable for knowledge level work.  Definitely worth looking into more, although I wouldn't do it with children younger than about 4th grade (and then with parents signing off on completed assignments as well so there isn't any surprise). Just my 2 cents. :-)

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