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All About Earth

Our World on Stage

Elementary

Description

All About Earth: Our World on Stage is a classroom resource that introduces environmental education to students at a very young age through the use of a science-based storybook and inquiry-based learning activities. This resource is designed to increase student understanding and environmental awareness of the connections between the different parts of the Earth system.

All About Earth portrays children asking questions about the natural world, doing science investigations, and exploring the world around them. Through the storybook characters, scientific inquiry is modeled for young learners. The associated learning activities provide opportunities for students to practice science inquiry and develop investigation skills, including observation, recording, and measuring. Students are also introduced to and gain experience in using different tools that scientists use.

Students will:

  • prepare terrariums in order to record the growth of radish plants. They create experimental conditions in terrariums in order to study what plants need to live. They observe the terrariums over time and record their observations.

  • go outdoors and make observations of interactions between components of the earth’s system. After recording their observations, students share what they saw with the class.

  • brainstorm, write, create, and produce a play in which they represent how all the parts of the Earth’s systems are interconnected.
  • create posters and flyers to advertise their play
  • perform their play at a school assembly or parent evening

The resource includes teacher background information, text and web resources and supplementary activities to be used as a comprehensive unit or individually.

 

 

 

General Assessment

What skills does this resource explicitly teach?

  • Building consensus
  • Scientific inquiry skills such as communicating, recording, observing

Strengths

  • The resource allows teacher to meet curriculum expectations through engaging and environmentally-focused learning activities.
  • The resource contains good background information for the teacher.
  • Links on the web and suggested books are provided.
  • The activities are age-appropriate and can be adapted for various levels.

Weaknesses

  • No rubrics or assessment tools are provided
  • Needs a stronger action component where students can contribute to the community.
  • Lacks discussion of social and economic connections
  • No case studies

Relevant Curriculum Units

The following tool will allow you to explore the relevant curriculum matches for this resource. To start, select a province listed below.

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  • Alberta
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        • Comprehend & Respond
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        • Comprehend & Respond
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        • Comprehend & Respond
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        • Exploring connections strengthens our understandings of relationships to help us make meaning of the world.
    • Grade 3
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        • Arts: Drama
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        • Explore thoughts, ideas, feelings and experiences
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        • Investigating change and the diversity of Earth’s systems helps us to develop understandings of the conditions necessary to sustain life.
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        • Science: Daily and seasonal changes affect all living things.
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        • Science 2: Living things have life cycles adapted to their environment
  • Manitoba
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        • Characteristics and Needs of Living Things
        • Daily and Seasonal Changes
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        • Air and Water in the Environment
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        • Comprehend and Respond Personally and Critically
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        • Growth and Changes in Plants
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        • Comprehend and Respond Personally and Critically
        • Enhance Clarity and Artistry of Communication.
  • New Brunswick
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        • Social Studies: Exploring our World
  • Newfoundland & Labrador
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        • Daily & Seasonal Changes
        • Needs and Characteristics of Living Things
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        • Arts: Creating, Making, and Presenting
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        • Air and Water in the Environment
    • Grade 3
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        • Plant Growth & Changes
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        • Art: Connecting Contexts of Time, Place, and Community
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        • Exploring Our World
  • Northwest Territories
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        • Clarify and Enhance
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        • Earth and Space Systems: Daily and Seasonal Cycles
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        • Arts Education 2 : Visual Art
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    • Grade 3
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      • Arts
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        • Arts Education 3: Visual Art
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        • Comprehend and Respond
      • Science
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        • Life Systems: Growth and Changes in Plants
    • Grade 4
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        • Arts Education 4: Visual Art
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        • Access and Explore
        • Comprehend & Respond
  • Nova Scotia
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    • Kindergarten
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        • Primary: Listening and Speaking
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        • Science 1: Living Things and the Environment
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        • Listening and Speaking
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        • Visual Arts 4
  • Nunavut
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    • Kindergarten
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        • Arts: Exploring Our World
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        • Access and Explore
        • Clarify and Enhance
        • Comprehend and Respond
    • Grade 1
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        • Clarify and Enhance
        • Comprehend and Respond
    • Grade 2
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        • Arts Education 2: Creative/Productive
        • Arts Education 2: Critical/Responsive
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        • Access and Explore
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        • Comprehend & Respond
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Earth and Space Systems: Air and Water in the Environment
    • Grade 3
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • English/Language Arts
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Comprehend and Respond
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Life Systems: Growth and Changes in Plants
    • Grade 4
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      • English/Language Arts
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        • Access and Explore
        • Comprehend & Respond
  • Ontario
  • Prince Edward Island
  • Quebec
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    • Grade 1
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Arts
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Arts: Visual Arts: To produce media works in the visual arts
      • English/Language Arts
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • To read and Listen to Literary, Popular and Information -based texts
      • Science & Technology
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Earth and Space
        • Living things
    • Grade 2
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Arts
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Arts: Visual Arts:To produce individual works in the visual arts
      • English/Language Arts
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • To read and Listen to Literary, Popular and Information -based texts
        • To use Language to communicate and learn
      • Science & Technology
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Earth and Space
        • Living things
    • Grade 3
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Arts
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Arts: Visual Arts: To produce individual works in the visual arts
      • English/Language Arts
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • To read and Listen to Literary, Popular and Information -based texts
        • To use Language to communicate and learn
      • Science & Technology
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Earth and Space
        • Living Things
    • Grade 4
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Arts
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Arts: Visual Arts: To produce individual works in the visual arts
      • English/Language Arts
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • To read and Listen to Literary, Popular and Information -based texts
        • To use Language to communicate and learn
      • Science & Technology
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Earth and Space
        • Living Things
  • Saskatchewan
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    • Kindergarten
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        • Comprehend and Respond
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Units & Outcomes
    • Grade 1
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      • Arts
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Arts 1: Critical/Responsive
        • Arts Education 1: Creative/Productive
      • English/Language Arts
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        • Compose and Create
        • Comprehend and Respond
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Daily and Seasonal Changes
        • Needs & Characteristics of Living Things
    • Grade 2
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Arts
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Arts Education 2: Creative/Productive
        • Arts Education 2: Critical/Responsive
      • English/Language Arts
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Compose and Create
        • Comprehend and Respond
    • Grade 3
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • English/Language Arts
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Assess and Reflect
        • Compose and Create
        • Comprehend and Respond
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Exploring Soils
        • Plant Growth and Changes
    • Grade 4
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Arts
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Arts Education 4: Cultural/Historical
      • English/Language Arts
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Compose and Create
        • Comprehend and Respond
  • Yukon Territory
    • Step 2Select a grade level
    • Kindergarten
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science: Daily and seasonal changes affect all living things.
        • Science: Plants and animals have observable features
    • Grade 2
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 2: Living things have life cycles adapted to their environment

Themes Addressed

  • Ecosystems (2)

    • Appreciating the Natural World
    • Interdependence

Sustainability Education Principles

Principle Rating Explanation
Consideration of Alternative Perspectives Good
  • The resource demonstrates how environmental education can be introduced to students at a very young age through the use of inquiry based activities. The experiments allow the students to draw their own conclusions based on the information they gather in the classroom. Students are not influenced to any particular point of view.
Consideration of Alternative Perspectives:
  • Satisfactory: absence of bias towards any one point of view
  • Good: students consider different points of view regarding issues, problems discussed
  • Very good: based on the consideration of different views, students form opinions and  take an informed position
Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions Satisfactory
  • The resource addresses the environmental issues using an age-appropriate approach, but does not directly address the economic or social dimensions.

Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions:

Effectively addresses the environmental, economic and social dimensions of the issue(s) being explored.

  • Satisfactory: resource supports the examination of  these dimensions
  • Good:  resource explicitly examines the interplay of these dimensions
  • Very Good:  a systems-thinking approach is encouraged to examine these three dimensions
Respects Complexity Good

  • Students will be able to explain how the Earth’s processes and components are interconnected

Respects Complexity:

The complexity of the problems/issues being discussed is respected.

Acting on Learning Satisfactory
  • Action opportunities are extensions instead of being integral to the main part of the activity.
Acting on Learning:

Learning moves from understanding  issues  to working towards positive change — in personal lifestyle, in school, in the community,  or for the planet

  • Satisfactory: action opportunities are included as extensions 
  • Good: action opportunities are core components of the resource
  • Very Good: action opportunities for students are well supported and intended to result in observable, positive change
Values Education Satisfactory
  • Students brainstorm, write, create, and produce a play in which they represent how all the parts of the Earth’s systems are interconnected.

Values Education:

Students are explicitly provided with opportunities to identify, clarify and express their own beliefs/values.

Empathy & Respect for Humans Poor/Not considered
  • Not considered in this resource.
Empathy & Respect for Humans: Empathy and respect are fostered for diverse groups of humans (including different genders, ethnic groups, sexual preferences, etc.).
Personal Affinity with Earth Good
Personal Affinity with Earth:

Encourages a personal affinity with -the natural world.  

  • Satisfactory: connection is made to the natural world
  • Good: fosters appreciation/concern for the natural world
  • Very Good: fosters stewardship though practical and respectful experiences out-of-doors 
Locally-Focused Learning Good
  • Students will be able to demonstrate their knowledge of how water, air, soil, and living things interact in the Earth system.

Locally-Focused Learning:

Includes learning experiences that take advantage of issues/elements within the local community. 

  • Satisfactory: learning is made relevant to the lives of the learners
  • Good: learning is made relevant and has a local focus
  • Very Good: learning is made relevant, local and takes place ‘outside’ , in the community 
Past, Present & Future Poor/Not considered
  • Not considered in this resource.
Past, Present & Future: Promotes an understanding of the past, a sense of the present, and a positive vision for the future.

Pedagogical Approaches

Principle Rating Explanation
Open-Ended Instruction Good
  • The resource storybook and learning activities provide students with opportunities to engage in scientific inquiry.
  • Students raise questions about the world around them, gather evidence through many types of investigations including observations and experimentation.
Open-Ended Instruction :

Lessons are structured so that multiple/complex answers are possible; students are not steered toward one 'right' answer.

Integrated Learning Good
  • Science
  • Language Arts
  • Art
Integrated Learning:

Learning brings together content and skills  from more than one  subject area

  • Satisfactory: content from a number of different  subject areas is readily identifiable
  • Good:  resource is appropriate for use in more than one subject area
  • Very Good:  the lines between subjects are blurred 
Inquiry Learning Good
  • The associated classroom activities provide opportunities for students to practice scientific inquiry skills, including observation, recording, measuring, etc. Students also gain exposure and increase their comfort with different tools that scientists use.
Inquiry Learning:

Learning is directed by questions, problems, or challenges that students work to address.   

  • Satisfactory: Students are provided with questions/problems to solve and some direction on how to arrive at solutions.
  • Good: students, assisted by the teacher clarify the question(s) to ask and the process to follow to arrive at solutions.  Sometimes referred to as Guided Inquiry
  • Very Good:  students generate the questions and assume much of the responsibility for how to solve them.  . Sometimes referred to as self-directed learning.

 

Differentiated Instruction Good
  • The resource recognizes that cognitive development as well as ability and skills of students in the K-4 age range vary widely. Kindergarten teachers will use the resource very differently than will those teaching grades three or four. Teachers may choose the approach that best suit their students' needs.

Differentiated Instruction:

Activities address a range of student learning styles, abilities and readiness.

  • Satisfactory:  includes a variety of instructional approaches
  • Good: addresses  the needs of visual, auditory &  kinesthetic learners
  • Very Good: also includes strategies for learners with difficulties
Experiential Learning Good
Experiential Learning:

Authentic learning experiences are provided

  • Satisfactory: learning takes place through ‘hands-on’ experience or simulation
  • Good: learning involves direct experience in a ‘real world context’
  • Very good: learning involves ‘real world experiences’ taking place’ beyond the school walls.
Cooperative Learning Satisfactory
  • Students work in groups
Cooperative Learning:

Group and cooperative learning strategies are a priority.

  • Satisfactory:  students work in groups
  • Good: cooperative learning skills are explicitly taught and practiced
  • Very Good: cooperative learning skills are explicitly taught, practiced and assessed
Assessment & Evaluation Satisfactory
  • Reflection questions provided
  • Journal suggestions included
Assessment & Evaluation: Tools are provided that help students and teachers to capture formative and summative information about students' learning and performance. These tools may include reflection questions, checklists, rubrics, etc.
Peer Teaching Good
  • Students share their findings and observations with their peers.
  • The resource provides an opportunity for students to present their Earth System Play at a school assembly.
Peer Teaching:

Provides opportunities for students to actively present their knowledge and skills to peers and/or act as teachers and mentors.

  • Satisfactory: incidental teaching that arises from cooperative learning, presentations, etc.
  • Good or Very Good: an opportunity is intentionally created to empower students to teach other students/community members. The audience is somehow reliant on the students' teaching (students are not simply ‘presenting')
Case Studies Poor/Not considered
  • Not included in this resource.
Case Studies:

Relevant case studies are included.  Case studies are thorough descriptions of real events from real situations that students use to explore  concepts in an authentic context.

Locus of Control Good
  • A section entitled "Further Investigations" provides suggestions to enhance the learning.
Locus of Control: Meaningful opportunities are provided for students to choose elements of program content, the medium in which they wish to work, and/or to go deeper into a chosen issue.