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ELA G5:M2A:U3

Reading and Writing Like a Scientist: Observing Nature, Conducting Research, and Creating a Field Journal Entry

Each unit is made up of a sequence of between 5-20 lessons. The “unit at a glance” chart in the curriculum map breaks down each unit into its lessons, to show how the curriculum is organized in terms of standards address, supporting targets, ongoing assessment, and protocols. It also indicates which lessons include the mid-unit and end-of-unit assessments.

Lesson 1How to Write Like a Scientist in the Field: Introduction to the Elements of Field Journals

Long Term Targets Supporting Targets Ongoing Assessments Protocols
  • I can compare and contrast the organizational structure of different informational texts. (RI.5.5)
  • I can compare and contrast multiple accounts of the same event or topic. (RI.5.6)
  • I can analyze how visual elements add to the meaning, tone, or beauty of literary text. (RL.5.7)
  • I can effectively engage in discussions with diverse partners about fifth-grade topics and texts. (SL.5.1)
  • I can describe the features of a field journal.
  • I can compare and contrast an informational text and a field journal. 
  • I can describe how authors of field journals use a combination of drawings and text to communicate about their research. 
  • I can describe how field journals include a blend of informational and narrative writing. 
  • I can follow our classroom norms for collaboration when I examine field journals with a partner.
  • Field Journal Note-catchers
  • Venn diagram 
  • Exit tickets
  • Admit and Exit Ticket

Lesson 2Learning to Observe Closely and Record Accurately: How to Create a Field Journal

Long Term Targets Supporting Targets Ongoing Assessments Protocols
  • I can write informative/explanatory texts that convey ideas and information clearly. (W.5.2)
  • I can write narrative texts about real or imagined experiences or events. (W.5.3) 
  • I can write routinely for a variety of reasons. (W.5.10)
  • I can use specific language and vocabulary to describe events precisely in my field journal.
  • I can use sensory details to enhance my descriptions of experiences and events in my field journal. 
  • I can use formatting and pictures to add to the meaning of the text in my field journal entries.
  • Students’ field journals
  • Back-to-back and Face-to-Face
  • Think-Pair-Share

Lesson 3Writing Narratives from First-Person Point of View: Imagining Meg Lowman’s Rainforest Journal

Long Term Targets Supporting Targets Ongoing Assessments Protocols
  • I can write informative/explanatory texts that convey ideas and information clearly. (W.5.2)
  • I can write narrative texts about real or imagined experiences or events. (W.5.3) 
  • I can explain what a text says using quotes from the texts (RI.5.1)
  • I can write a field journal entry from Meg Lowman’s point of view. 
  • I can use specific language and vocabulary to describe a photograph of the rainforest.
  • I can use sensory details to enhance the descriptions in my rainforest field journal. 
  • I can find information in The Most Beautiful Roof in the World to incorporate into a rainforest field journal entry.
  • Students’ field journals
  • Journals (rainforest field journal entry)
  • None

Lesson 4Taking Notes and Citing Quotes from Text: Gathering Information on our Rainforest Insects

Long Term Targets Supporting Targets Ongoing Assessments Protocols
  • I can use quotes to explain the meaning of informational texts. (RI.5.1)
  • I can determine the main idea(s) of an informational text based on key details. (RI.5.2)
  • I can use a variety of sources to develop an understanding of a topic. (RI.5.9)
  • I can document what I learn about a topic by taking notes. (W.5.8)
  • I can record quotes from a text about entomology in my notes.
  • I can paraphrase a text about entomology.
  • I can take notes on a text using a Category/Facts/Questions/Response (C/F/Q/R) Note-catcher.
  • Field journals
  • C/F/Q/R Note-catcher
  • None

Lesson 5Structuring The Search: Categorizing Our Research

Long Term Targets Supporting Targets Ongoing Assessments Protocols
  • I can locate an answer or solve a problem efficiently, drawing from multiple informational sources. (RI.5.7)
  • I can document what I learn about a topic by taking notes. (W.5.8) 
  • I can summarize or paraphrase information in my notes and in finished work. (W.5.8)
  • I can sort information about rainforest insects into categories.
  • I can take notes by recording direct quotes from a text about rainforest insects.
  • I can take notes by paraphrasing information from a text about rainforest insects.
  • Students’ field journals
  • Exit ticket
  • Admit and Exit Ticket

Lesson 6Conducting Research: Asking and Answering our Questions about Rainforest Arthropods

Long Term Targets Supporting Targets Ongoing Assessments Protocols
  • I can explain what a text says using quotes from the text. (RI.5.1)
  • I can determine the main idea(s) of an informational text based on key details. (RI.5.2)
  • I can summarize an informational text. (RI.5.2) 
  • I can build knowledge about multiple aspects of a topic by conducting research. (W.5.7)
  • I can use several sources to build my knowledge about a topic. (W.5.7)
  • I can document what I learn about a topic by taking notes. (W.5.8)
  • I can effectively engage in discussions with diverse partners about fifth-grade topics and texts. (SL.5.1)
  • I can take notes by recording direct quotes from a text about rainforest insects.
  • I can take notes by paraphrasing information from a text about rainforest insects.
  • I can use evidence from the text to answer questions. 
  • I can take notes from different sources about insects in the rainforest. 
  • I can work cooperatively with my classmates in an expert research group.
  • Students’ field journals
  • Journals (C/F/Q/R Note-catchers)
  • Ant question charts (ant groups)
  • Butterfly Life Cycle graphic (butterfly group)
  • Jigsaw
  • Tea Party

Lesson 7Conducting Research: Analyzing a Variety of Sources to Capture Information about My Insect

Long Term Targets Supporting Targets Ongoing Assessments Protocols
  • I can locate an answer or solve a problem efficiently, drawing from multiple informational sources. (RI.5.7)
  • I can become knowledgeable about a topic by conducting research projects. (W.5.7)
  • I can use several sources to build my knowledge about a topic. (W.5.7)
  • I can document what I learn about a topic by taking notes. (W.5.8)
  • I can build my knowledge about rainforest insects by examining different resources. 
  • I can build my knowledge about my rainforest insects by watching videos. 
  • I can document my learning by taking notes.
  • Students’ field journals
  • Students’ research notes
  • Admit and exit tickets
  • None

Lesson 8Mid-Unit 3 Assessment: On-Demand Note-Taking about Howler Monkeys

Long Term Targets Supporting Targets Ongoing Assessments Protocols
  • I can explain what a text says using quotes from the text. (RI.5.1)
  • I can determine the main idea(s) of an informational text based on key details. (RI.5.2)
  • I can locate an answer or solve a problem efficiently, drawing from multiple informational sources. (RI.5.7)
  • I can document what I learn about a topic by taking notes. (W.5.8)
  • I can summarize or paraphrase information in my notes and in finished work. (W.5.8)
  • I can use three different sources to find information about howler monkeys.
  • I can record my information about howler monkeys in an accurate and organized way.
  • I can reflect on my learning.
  • Mid-Unit 3 Assessment
  • Tracking My Progress, Mid-Unit 3 recording form
  • None

Lesson 9Making Inferences About Informational Text: Science Talk on How My Insect Contributes to the Rainforest Ecosystem

Long Term Targets Supporting Targets Ongoing Assessments Protocols
  • I can prepare myself to participate in discussions. (SL.5.1a)
  • I can draw on information to explore ideas in the discussion. (SL.5.1b)
  • I can follow our class norms when I participate in a conversation. (SL.5.1c)
  • I can ask questions that are on the topic being discussed. (SL.5.1d)
  • I can connect my questions and responses to what others say. (SL.5.1e)
  • After a discussion, I can explain key ideas about the topic being discussed. (SL.5.1f)
  • I can share my ideas with my peers during a Science Talk about the contribution of insects to the rainforest ecosystem.
  • I can use the ideas of my peers in order to help inform my ideas about the contribution of insects to the rainforest ecosystem.
  • I can gather my notes on informational texts as evidence in order to prepare for a Science Talk about the contribution of insects to the rainforest ecosystem.
  • I can synthesize my ideas about the contribution of insects to the rainforest ecosystem after the Science Talk.
  • Science Talk (Observations/Notes) 
  • Journal: Synthesis Statement
  • Think-Pair-Share
  • Science Talk

Lesson 10Blending Informative and Narrative Writing: Transforming Research Notes into Field Journal Entries

Long Term Targets Supporting Targets Ongoing Assessments Protocols
  • I can write informative/explanatory texts that convey ideas and information clearly. (W.5.2)
  • I can write narrative texts about real or imagined experiences or events. (W.5.3)
  • I can choose evidence from fifth-grade informational texts to support analysis, reflection and research. (W.5.9)
  • I can write a field journal entry from the point of view of a rainforest scientist.
  • I can choose evidence from my notes in order to write a field journal entry that includes specific details about the contributions of ants or butterflies to the rainforest.
  • Rainforest Field Journal graphic organizer
  • None

Lesson 11Writing and Revising Our Texts: Using Peer Critique to Improve First Drafts

Long Term Targets Supporting Targets Ongoing Assessments Protocols
  • I can write informative/explanatory texts that convey ideas and information clearly. (W.5.2)
  • I can write narrative texts about real or imagined experiences or events. (W.5.3)
  • I can choose evidence from fifth-grade informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research. (W.5.9)
  • I can write for a variety of reasons. (W.5.10)
  • I can organize the events I describe in my rainforest journal entry in chronological order.
  • I can use linking words and phrases to connect my ideas.
  • I can include precise and scientific vocabulary in my rainforest journal entry.
  • Rainforest Field Journal Entry graphic organizer
  • Postcards
  • None

Lesson 12Using Peer Feedback and Summarizing Our Research In Informational Text Boxes

Long Term Targets Supporting Targets Ongoing Assessments Protocols
  • I can write narrative texts about real or imagined experiences or events. (W.5.3)
  • I can write informative/explanatory texts that convey ideas and information clearly. (W.5.2)
  • I can choose evidence from fifth-grade informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research. (W.5.9)
  • I can give feedback to my peers respectfully.
  • I can improve my writing based on feedback from my peers.
  • I can summarize the most important information about an ant or a butterfly in a text box.
  • Homework questions
  • Peer feedback sheets
  • Exit tickets
  • Admit and Exit Ticket
  • Praise-Question-Suggest

Lesson 13Revision and Illustration: Strengthening the Writing in my Rainforest Field Journal and Adding a Labeled Drawing

Long Term Targets Supporting Targets Ongoing Assessments Protocols
  • With support from peers and adults, I can use a writing process to produce clear and coherent writing. (W.5.4)
  • I can use text, formatting, illustrations, and multimedia to support my topic. (W.5.2)
  • I can identify where I will need to revise my field journal entry so that my ideas, organization, and language meet our rubric for quality.
  • I can use text, formatting, and illustrations to support the topic of my rainforest field research journal.
  • I can create a labeled drawing of an insect that is detailed and accurate.
  • Field journal entry drafts
  • Scientific drawings (first draft)
  • None

Lesson 14Revising and Polishing Our Final Products

Long Term Targets Supporting Targets Ongoing Assessments Protocols
  • I can use the writing process to produce clear and coherent writing (with support). (W.5.5)
  • I can use conventions to send a clear message to my reader. (L.5.2)
  • I can use technology to publish a piece of writing (with support). (W.5.6) (Optional; for schools with adequate technology only)
  • I can finalize my field journal entry so that my ideas, organization, language, and use of conventions meet our rubric for quality.
  • I can summarize the most important information about an ant or a butterfly in a text box.
  • I can create a scientific drawing of an insect that is detailed and accurate.
  • I can give my classmates kind, helpful, and specific feedback about their rainforest field journal entries. 
  • I can use the feedback I receive from my classmates to improve my work.
  • Drafts of field journal narratives, informational text boxes, and labeled drawings
  • Project Management checklists
  • None

Lesson 15End of Unit Assessment: Writing a Rainforest Field Journal Entry about Howler Monkeys

Long Term Targets Supporting Targets Ongoing Assessments Protocols
  • I can use a variety of strategies to locate an answer or solve a problem efficiently in informational texts. (RI.5.7) 
  • I can write informative/explanatory texts that convey ideas and information clearly. (W.5.2)
  • I can write narrative texts about real or imagined experiences or events. (W.5.3)
  • I can produce clear and coherent writing that is appropriate to task, purpose, and audience. (W.5.4)
  • I can use several sources to build my knowledge about a topic. (W.5.7) 
  • I can choose evidence from fifth-grade informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research. (W.5.9)
  • I can write a field journal entry about howler monkeys using ideas, organization, language, and use of conventions that meet our rubric for quality.
  • I can summarize the most important information about howler monkeys in a text box.
  • End of Unit 3 Assessment
  • Tracking My Progress, End of Unit 3 recording form
  • None

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