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ALEX Lesson Plans


Subject: English Language Arts (1), or Science (1)
Title: Let’s Plant a Garden with Frog and Toad
Description: Interdisciplinary ELA and science lesson where students explore the social ethics and dynamics of friendship. Students will also discuss, compare, and contrast the differences of toads attempt to plant a garden to the actual needs of a developing seed.  This is a College- and Career-Ready Standards showcase lesson plan.


Subject: Mathematics (1), or Science (1 - 2)
Title: Spiders: Are They Scary or Nice?
Description: Children often do not understand spiders because spiders look scary. In this lesson, students will graph spider preferences and record observations of spiders in a natural habitat. Students will research spider information using the Internet. Students will illustrate a vivarium for a spider habitat, including 5 environmental characteristics. This lesson will take more than one day to complete. This is a College- and Career-Ready Standards showcase lesson plan.


Subject: English Language Arts (1), or Science (1)
Title: Ready, Set, Let's Grow!
Description: In this lesson, students will learn about how plants change over time. Students will use literacy skills during a close reading to discuss the basic parts of a plant. This is a College- and Career-Ready Standards showcase lesson plan.


Subject: Mathematics (1), or Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Animals that Measure Up!
Description: Students will learn how to order items by length. They will use plastic toy animals for hands on learning and then students will locate pictures of animals of various lengths and sizes in their natural habitat on the Internet. They will use those pictures in creating a five slide presentation. The students will put those slides in order from longest animal to shortest animal.


Subject: Arts Education (K - 2), or Science (K - 3), or Social Studies (K - 5)
Title: The Medicine Leaf Man
Description: The teacher will briefly discuss Mississippian time period medicine men. The teacher will read Leaf Man by Louis Elhert and discuss leaves of various trees that grow in Russell Cave National Monument and the surrounding North Alabama area that were used for medicinal purposes. Students will then create a medicine man using the discussed medicinal leaves and tree parts. This lesson plan is made possible through the ALEX and the U.S. National Park Service Partnership.


Subject: English Language Arts (1), or Science (1)
Title: Exploring Owls
Description: During this lesson, students will visit Internet sites to research facts about owls and food chains. They will use this information to complete a picture of an owl food chain, dissect owl pellets, and write a class book about owls.


Subject: Science (1 - 3), or Social Studies (K - 3)
Title: Tad the Tadpole
Description: Tad the Tadpole is designed to demonstrate how pollution in various areas affects wildlife in their native habitats. The lesson is designed to stress the importance of conservation for animals and their surrounding environment.  Upon conclusion of the lesson, the students will determine ways they could take care of the environment as opposed to further pollute. This lesson plan is made possible through the ALEX and the U.S. National Park Service Partnership.


Subject: Arts Education (2), or English Language Arts (K), or Science (K - 2)
Title: Camouflage (Predator vs Prey) at Little River Canyon National Preserve
Description: The hunter is the predator while the hunted is the prey. Both animals try to make themselves appear as part of their natural surroundings. Predators do not wish to be seen while hunting and prey want to hide when hunted. This lesson plan is made possible through the ALEX and the U.S. National Park Service Partnership.


Subject: English Language Arts (K), or Science (1)
Title: Science Writing with Author Lois Ehlert
Description: This is an interdisciplinary language development unit addressing science and language arts standards designed for English Language Learners. In the week-long unit students will learn the life cycle of plants and discuss various uses for plants. They will also use the writing of a renowned children's author, Lois Ehlert, as a model for their own writing. During the final project students will follow the writing process. The lesson format follows the Sheltered English Instructional Observation Protocol (SIOP).


Subject: Science (K - 5)
Title: Little River Canyon's Carnivorous Green Pitcher Plants
Description: A digital slide program introduces the Green Pitcher Plant (Sarracenia oreophila) to the students.  Students use a model of the Green Pitcher Plant and plastic insects to role play. They will tell the story of habitat adaptation and interaction around the pitcher plant bog. Pitcher Plants and the animals in the neighborhood have lives interconnected to the environment. This lesson plan is made possible through the ALEX and the U.S. National Park Service Partnership.


Subject: English Language Arts (1), or Science (1)
Title: The Very Busy Students: Writing with Eric Carle
Description: In this interdisciplinary unit addressing science and language arts standards, English Language Learners will learn the life cycle of insects. They will also use the writing of a renowned children's author, Eric Carle, as a model for their own writing. During the final project of the lesson, students will follow the writing process. The lesson format follows the Sheltered English Instruction Observation Protocol (SIOP).


Subject: Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 5)
Title: Surviving in the World!
Description: After learning about the survival traits of the chameleon, students will work in groups to research the survival traits of other animals on the Internet and will create a slide show using the collected information to share with the class.This lesson plan was created as a result of the Girls Engaged in Math and Science University, GEMS-U Project.


Subject: Science (K - 2), or Social Studies (K - 2), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Continent Jump
Description: Students will learn about animals that live on all seven continents. Students and teachers will use websites to learn additional information about the animals from various continents.This lesson plan was created as a result of the Girls Engaged in Math and Science University, GEMS-U Project.


Subject: Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Have You Seen My Mother?
Description: This lesson will introduce the sense of smell. It will show how an animal, such as a bat, finds its baby by using the sense of smell. Students will have the opportunity to view information on the Internet to learn more about bats. They will also participate in a hands-on activity to experience how a mother bats locates her baby.


Subject: Science (K - 1)
Title: Living Things
Description: During this lesson students will learn about living things. Through this hands-on lesson, students will have the opportunity to create a slideshow presentation and plant poster and explore Internet sites to learn about living things.


Subject: Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: What Is Alive?
Description: This lesson is the opening lesson for a unit of study entitled "Why Doesn't A Caterpillar Grow Up To Be An Oak Tree?" during which students take a look at life cycles of plants and animals. This lesson will encourage students to explore the concepts of "living" and "non-living" by comparing them.


Subject: English Language Arts (1), or Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Butterfly Tales
Description: During this lesson, students will recall events from a story and describe the life cycle of the butterfly. Students will use their imaginations, writing, and computer skills to create a butterfly tale. They will discuss and integrate words that describe butterflies in their butterfly tale.


Subject: Science (1)
Title: Arctic Adventures
Description: During this lesson, students will explore plant and animal life found at the Arctic Circle. They will also learn about the dangerously cold climate and the location of the Arctic Circle relative to the school's location on maps and globes.


Subject: English Language Arts (1), or Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Fun-Loving Frogs
Description: During this lesson students will use their imaginations and writing skills to write a story from a wordless picture book, Tuesday, by David Wiesner. They will work in pairs and write text to go along with the pictures. They will also view a website to learn facts about frogs.


Subject: Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Exploring Plant Leaves
Description: During this lesson, first grade students become plant explorers. They explore the Internet and take a nature walk to learn the similarities and differences in plants and leaves.


Subject: Science (K - 1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Zoo Animals
Description: This theme unit on animals includes activities that can be used in centers or in a whole-group setting. A variety of subject areas are addressed with emphasisis on the use of technology.


Subject: English Language Arts (1), or Information Literacy (K - 12), or Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Fishing for Facts!
Description: This lesson will involve a visit to the Library Media Center to research different sea creatures. Using an encyclopedia, students will find two facts about their sea creature. Using the Internet, students will work in small groups to find a picture of their sea creature. All work will be combined into a sea creature booklet.


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Nocturnal Animals Lesson #6: Skunks
Description: In this lesson students will learn interesting facts about skunks. They will also design a "nose guard" that people can wear to protect themselves against the smell of a skunk. Then students will have a chance to dramatize a commercial for their "nose guards."


Subject: Science (1)
Title: Nocturnal Animals Lesson #7: Spiders
Description: In this lesson students will learn the body parts of a spider and write addition/subtractions sentences using spiders. The class will go on a nature walk to find spiders and spider webs. Finally, the students will complete a science experiment to learn how spiders eat.


Subject: English Language Arts (1), or Science (1), or Technology Education (9 - 12)
Title: African Internet Safari
Description: During this lesson, students read and listen to poems about African animals and try to guess which animal is being described. Students will use the information they already know to identify the animals. Students will have the opportunity to write a mystery poem about an animal. They will get to share their poems and have the class guess the animal.


Subject: English Language Arts (1), or Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Nocturnal Animals Lesson #4: Owls
Description: During this lesson, students will visit various Internet sites to learn facts about owls. They will use this information to draw a picture of the owl food chain, dissect owl pellets, and write a poem about owls.


Subject: English Language Arts (1), or Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: My Book About Animals
Description: This lesson will allow students an opportunity to create a book about the different characteristics of mammals, birds, fish, reptiles, and insects. This lesson can be used as a wrap-up project for a unit on animals. This is a fun way for students to share what they have learned throughout the unit.


Subject: Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Seeds and Germination
Description: This lesson will be introduced to the students as a part of a unit of study about plants. The students will learn to accurately diagram the parts of a seed and will predict what conditions are needed for germination.


Subject: Science (K - 2), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Farm Animals Thematic Unit
Description: Students will participate in a thematic study about the farm. They will work cooperatively to create a book about farm animals using technology resources. This project will take approximately 5 days and can be used in conjunction with or at the end of a farm unit.


Subject: Science (1 - 2), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Children's Zoo of Mammals
Description: This lesson is a technology-based project. This lesson can be taught as a part of an unit on mammals. Students will research different mammals and identify characteristics of mammals. They will also contrast and compare humans to other types of mammals. They will create a group multimedia presentation identifying mammals, characteristics of mammals, and a picture of the assigned mammal. Students will then use Publisher to design a newsletter to inform family members of our studies on mammals. A web site can be developed to enhance the students’ study of mammal.


Subject: English Language Arts (1), or Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Pretty Cool Penguins
Description: This lesson is part of an interdisciplinary primary life science unit addressing adaptation and habitats by focusing on penguins. This lesson is primarily technology based and should take place near the end of the unit, after students have had time to become thoroughly familiar with penguins and are ready to synthesize their learning.


Subject: English Language Arts (1), or Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Butterfly Life Cycles
Description: This unit introduces students to a study of life cycles by having them examine the life cycle of a butterfly. The students will observe, record and describe the changes in caterpillars as they become butterflies. The teacher will conclude the unit by having each student prepare a slide about a butterfly he/she has researched for a class slideshow presentation about butterflies.


Subject: English Language Arts (1), or Science (1)
Title: Nocturnal Animals Lesson #1: Introduction to Nocturnal Animals
Description: This lesson can be part of a two-week integrated thematic unit on nocturnal animals. During this lesson, students will be introduced to nocturnal animals. They will have an opportunity to navigate web sites to learn more about nocturnal animals. The students will also use the writing process to share what they learn about their favorite nocturnal animal.


Subject: English Language Arts (1 - 2), or Science (1 - 2), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Beginner's AVL (Alabama Virtual Library)
Description: Students will research the red fox using an online encyclopedia from the Alabama Virtual Library web site and answer questions provided by the teacher. This is a good lesson for students' first experience in using the AVL.


Subject: English Language Arts (1), or Mathematics (K - 2), or Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: The Grouchy Ladybug
Description: The students will thoughtfully listen to a story read aloud and comprehend the sequence of events. This lesson will culminate units completed in science and math and will incorporate literature, science, and math.


Subject: English Language Arts (1), or Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: "Batty" About Bats!! (Writing)
Description: As a part of a week-long unit about bats, the students will identify the characteristics of a bat and write an essay about bats. Student understanding will be enhanced through the use of books, poems, lectures, discussions, individual “flip books”, an art project, and the Internet.


Subject: English Language Arts (1), or Mathematics (K - 2), or Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: "Nuts" About Peanuts! (Reading)
Description: The lesson will be implemented as part of a unit about plants. The students will learn about the growth cycle of a peanut and use a Five-Step Sequence Think-sheet to sequence the steps. They will also make predictions and complete activities to check their predictions/draw conclusions (including math skills of graphing and comparing). Student understanding will be enhanced with the use of books, class discussions, and the Internet.


Subject: Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Fundamentally Fish
Description: The science portion of this lesson provides opportunities for students to recognize that structure and function are directly related to specific animals and to their survival. The body shape and the position and size of the mouth of a fish tell a great deal about where it lives and what it eats. A basic computer research component orients students to fundamental processes of online investigation.


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or Mathematics (K - 2), or Science (1 - 2), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Very Busy Spiders
Description: The students will work from a computer and a specified Webquest to complete a unit on spiders. The lessons will incorporate literature, writing, science, art, and graphing.


Subject: Science (K - 1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Three Awesome Bears
Description: The lesson will be implemented during a study of bears. Books, class discussions, and the Internet will be used to learn about bears and their characteristics. Black, brown, and polar bears will be categorized according to their food and their habitat. As a culminating activity the students will use "Kidspiration" software to match bears with their habitat and food.


Thinkfinity Lesson Plans


Subject: Science
Title: Investigating Local Ecosystems      Add Bookmark
Description: The purpose of this Science NetLinks lesson is to use Internet resources to investigate the habitats of local plants and animals and to explore some of the ways animals depend on plants and each other. In the lesson, students observe living organisms in a local ecosystem and create detailed drawings and descriptions of them.
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Science - Biological and Life Sciences - Science - Ecology - Social Studies - Geography
Title: Elementary Ecosystems      Add Bookmark
Description: In this lesson, from Xpeditions, students are introduced to the basics of species interdependency within an ecosystem. They perform a simple simulation to see how one species can affect many others. For older students, the term ecosystem can be defined and used in the lesson.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Science
Title: Insect Models      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Science NetLinks lesson, students explore insects by making models of insects of their choice. When the models are completed, students can compare their models to the insects themselves and to pictures of the insects.
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Science - Biological and Life Sciences - Social Studies - Geography
Title: Alligators and Crocodiles      Add Bookmark
Description: This lesson, from Xpeditions, introduces students to the American alligator, the Nile crocodile, and SuperCroc (the prehistoric crocodilian species Sarcosuchus imperator). Students learn about each species geographical range, habitat, diet, and behaviors. They conclude the lesson by designing zoo habitats for alligators or crocodiles and creating captions providing information about these species prehistoric relative.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Investigating Animals: Using Nonfiction for Inquiry-based Research      Add Bookmark
Description: Inspired by their curiosity about animals, students work together to research an animal of their choice and present the information they gather to an authentic audience.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Animal Study: From Fiction to Facts      Add Bookmark
Description: Students listen to fiction and nonfiction read-alouds and explore selected Websites to identify factual information about animals. This lesson focuses on ants, but can be adapted to any animal.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Arts,Language Arts,Science
Title: Under the Deep Blue Sea      Add Bookmark
Description: In this EDSITEment lesson, students have the opportunity to explore oceans and ocean life. After locating the earth's major oceans on a world map, students dive underwater to discover the plants and animals that live in the sea. Students listen to stories and poems with oceanic settings and learn about the forms of sea life featured in each. They can add their own artwork and text about ocean animals and plants to a cut-away ocean display. Finally, students engage in various forms of creative writing about the ocean and ocean life.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Science - Ecology - Social Studies - Geography
Title: Who Am I?      Add Bookmark
Description: In this lesson, from Xpeditions, students learn about many different animals that live in deserts. They learn what the animals look like and about characteristics that enable them to live in the harsh environment of desert habitats.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Science
Title: What Plants Need to Grow CROPS      Add Bookmark
Description: This Science NetLinks lesson is the second of a two-part series on where food comes from. In this lesson, students explore how to grow plants and learn what kinds of things promote growth (warmth, sunlight, water, soil). Their activities involve learning about how seeds and plants grow and participating in a simple, in-class gardening project. Contains investigation / experiment
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Science, Mathematics
Title: It Counts      Add Bookmark
Description: This Science NetLinks lesson is designed to help students understand and reinforce how numbers are assigned to objects, as well as encourage them to think about more, less, or equal values. In the lesson, students are asked to describe, compare, and classify plants. Students should be able to use numbers concretely and descriptively to count as they make specific observations about plants.
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: K,1,2



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