Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Dissecting Squid with 4th Graders...

I have one big science rule in my classroom:

How cool is that picture?  I about died of happiness when I saw how great it turned out.
We have officially wrapped up our invertebrates unit.  I had real plans to share a bunch of the things we had done, and then I realized that I used a ton of cartoon characters and didn't want to infringe on any copyrights...and now I'm here and the unit is over.  I'm redirecting my thoughts on that one, and will probably check back in on it later.

I love teaching invertebrates because it's usually something that the kids don't know a whole lot about and I actually get to teach it!  We get to learn new words like cnidarians and echinoderms. Nothing makes a teacher happier than when the kids start using those words correctly without even thinking about it!  We took a trip to the SeaLife Aquarium this past week and it was glorious.  I had the kids split into groups of 5-6 and walk around with a parent helper.  My group could not have been more excited.  I was floored.  

"Miss B!!!!  Come here!  A mollusk!"  

"Miss B!!!  LOOK AT THIS SEA URCHIN!  It's an echinoderm, right?"

"Miss B!!!  Take a picture of this one!  Is that it's mouth?" 

"Look at this fact!  That's so weird!"

...I have never been more proud to have my name yelled in a more socially unacceptable place to be yelling.  Thank you, students.

If we're being honest (and we always are), it made my experience there so much better.  I loved seeing all the sea life and getting to experience it through their eyes.  

Then...I signed them up to dissect a squid.  We ate lunch first...but only two threatened to "lose their lunch" during mollusk surgery.  

I walked around quoting Dori from Finding Nemo, and it was not appreciated.

Image from "Oh My Disney"

I was a little skeptical of doing a dissection with fourth graders, but again, they surprised me.  They even took special care to say "oh cool" (and then make a grossed out face).  I loved it.

It was a fantastic wrap up to our unit.  It is so rewarding when you see what you had just taught being used outside of the classroom.  


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