A New Education

Encourage exploration, growth, curiosity and independence in a hands-on, minds-on learning environment!

Lesson 5-Each One/Teach One

Understanding: Students will gain a deeper understanding of their natural surroundings.  They will also develop their public speaking skills and interact positively with their peers.

Time: 1 hour

Materials: Information about the local flora and fauna of you schoolyard or a park nearby.  Depending on your class size, you may want to split the class into two groups of 12 and have only 12 facts available, 1 for each plant/tree and facilitate each 2/teach 2.  This is a two part lesson.  The first lesson involves creating the information sheets and the second lesson involves the movement and students as teachers lesson.

Anticipatory Set: Since your students have begun to delve deeper into the nature of specific plants/trees with the previous lesson, this is the perfect lesson to follow.  A great conversation to have with your class prior to beginning the lesson is their ability and natural role not only as students but as teachers.  Remind them that they teach you and each other lessons everyday.  This is yet another opportunity for them to become the teachers and ensure a democratic classroom!

Lesson: As stated earlier, this is a two part lesson.  The first day the students will spend time exploring the plant that you have assigned them by feeling the plant, the surrounding soil, and paying close attention to surrounding plants and trees.  Give each student (or group of two students) plant identification books and ask them to identify the species of plant that they have.  After, have them make (probably better if inside where the tools are) species cards that include the plants name and scientific name, cultural purpose and uses, specific looks during each season and any facts that they find interesting.  They must also include a picture.  before going outside with the students, it would be very appropriate to have made a species card in advance to use as a model.  These cards will be used for the following lesson.

The next day, clump the students together and play group games as you send one student (or group of two) to their plant (the closest one).  After, send another student to talk with that student and act as the student, learning from the teacher of that plant.  After they have learned, they continue to their plant and wait.  The teacher sends another student and they learn from the first student and then the second student and after, they continue to their plant and wait.  The cycle continues until all student have been sent away from the original circle to learn.  About two minutes after you have sent the last student, follow the student on that same path and send them one at a time from the first sent to the last sent to contiune down the path, learning from the teachers they have not encountered yet.

Things to think about: Send the students in 2 minute intervals… if the plants are all fairly close together or there is not one single path to follow if you are in a field for instance, place markers or arrows so the students know which plants to visit throughout their journey… and last, make sure to send them in order of the plant that they created their card for!

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