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Grades 3-5

This lesson is a culmination of a series of activities on fish anatomy and adaptation.
Prior to this lesson, students should have a background in fish anatomy and adaptation. Students will work in teams of 3 - 4 members to build a prototype of a three dimensional fish in its specific environment based on the students' knowledge of fish anatomy, functions, and adaptation. One to two class sessions of approximately 50 minutes each will be allowed for design and two to three sessions for construction. One week will be allowed for the activity completion.

Math Works #16: Problem Solving: Using Diagrams and Models

Students will:
Think-Pair-Share: Ask the students the questions:
If you were to create a fish, what body parts would it have and what kind of an environment would it need?
Have students pair up with someone in their group and discuss responses. Invite students to share their responses with the whole group.
If you now were asked to create this fish as a group project how would you go about doing it? This time ask students to discuss this with their group. Share responses with the whole group. Solicit from the group the problem at hand: to create a model of a fish in a realistic environment, and the steps that need to be followed. Discuss how they might go about the project. After discussion, suggest to the class that there are various ways to solve problems using diagrams, models, and flow charts. Tell students that they will be viewing a segment of a video on using diagrams, flow charts, and models to provide some ideas about how to begin their project.

Ask students if they have ever bought a model to build? If so, how did they know how to build it? Lead the responses to the subject of instructions, suggesting that the instructions may have been in the form of a diagram.
CUE to the title Using Diagrams & Models. BEGIN and play to place when the younger brother asks Mark "shouldn't you follow the diagram?"
FREEZE frame on that scene and ask: "What is the purpose of the instructions the younger brother is holding?"
Lead students to respond that they are instructions to show how to put the swing set together. CONTINUE video and FREEZE frame when Mark says: "I don't have time to use the instructions."
QUESTION: Ask students if they feel that he can build the swing set faster without following the instructions?
Responses will vary. CONTINUE video and FREEZE frame when Narrator asks: "Diagrams, why do we need them?" Solicit student responses to this question. Discuss that diagrams and models are used in many different ways. The video will show some examples. CONTINUE video. STOP video after mention of carpenter's blue print. Total viewing time approximately 2:46 minutes.

How can a diagram, flow chart, or blueprint assist you with your Create A Fish project? Use Think-Pair-Share technique again for responses. Share ideas with whole group.
Students will be assigned to design a diagram or flow chart showing steps that they will be taking to create their fish. Provide groups with flow chart templet. Once the flow chart has been approved they will be required to:
· design a blueprint of their fish and the environment in which it will be placed. Fish designs will be drawn to scale, model size will not exceed 24" in length, 12" in width, and 18" in height.
· create a materials list for their project
· submit both their designs and material lists to teacher approval. Materials may consist of items supplied by the teacher and/or students. Students should be encouraged to use items that they find around home or school with emphasis on recycled materials rather than purchasing new items for the project.
Teams will construct their fish model using their plan and material list and provide an environment for their fish. Student teams will work cooperatively and each member will participate in the construction process. Once the model and environment are completed, teams will prepare for class presentations.
Students will share their projects with the entire class. Ideally these presentations can be video taped to so that students can self evaluate.

The class will evaluate the models and presentations based on predetermined criteria and will complete written evaluations. Each team will be provided copies of these evaluations.

Language Arts:
Fish Tales
Write stories from the fish's point of view about their life adventures.

Have students choose an activity from the following list and create a flow chart to show a process step by step to emphasize how this method can be simplify or clarify a complicated process.
· how to make a handicraft item
· how to put together a puzzle
· how to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich
· how to ride a bicycle
· how to brush one's teeth
· how to wash a car

Life Sciences
Characteristics and structures of living things
Problem Solving

Master Teachers: Jane Scott Jones and Sharron L. Walker

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