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3501 Mini Unit Plan: Lesson 3 Josh Pidkowa | Alison Armitage | Madeleine Hardy

Lesson Rationale: For Lesson #3 we decided to shift gears from a science focus to an English
Language Arts focus, though in practice this lesson would be done in between Lesson #2 and
the next Evidence and Investigation Science lesson (which which be labelled Lesson #4 if we
our Mini-Unit were even longer). We decided to include it to demonstrate how to tie lessons
together thematically, enabling organic cross-curricular development.

Due to our focus on individuality through our examination of fingerprints, the students will begin
developing identity texts that are designed to look like their own fingerprints. This lesson is the
first in a series that would result in the students producing a completed identity text which would
appear similar to the example shown at the end of this document.

Lesson Lesson #3: Mini Unit Plan - Course English Language Arts
Title/Focus Fingerprint Identity Lesson

Apply observation and inference skills to recognize and interpret patterns and to distinguish a
specific pattern from a group of similar patterns (Grade 6 science: GLE 6-8)
Recognize that evidence found at the scene of an activity may have unique characteristics that
allow an investigator to make inferences about the participants and the nature of the activity, and
give examples of how specific evidence may be used (Grade 6 science: SLE #3)
Investigate evidence and link it to a possible source (Grade 6 science: SLE #4)
E.g. classifying fingerprints collected from a variety of surfaces.
Engage in exploratory communication to share personal responses and develop own
interpretations (Grade 6 language arts: GLO #1.1)
Identify, and explain in own words, the interrelationship of the main ideas and supporting details
(Grade 6 language arts: GLO #2.1)
Distinguish among facts supported inferences and opinions while using note-taking or
representing to assist with understanding ideas and information, and focusing topics for
investigation. (Grade 6 language arts: GLO #3.1)

At the end of the lesson students will be able to:
1. Listing and brainstorming traits, behaviours and interests that define themselves
2. Positively commenting on others lists and adding to each others traits (understanding
& applying)
3. Creating a draft for a unique art piece with their top, descriptive words (applying)
4. Start identifying 1 - 3 personal goals for the year (synthesizing) (this is an ongoing
learning objective that will guide this work for a number of lessons)

3501 Mini Unit Plan: Lesson 3 Josh Pidkowa | Alison Armitage | Madeleine Hardy


Fingerprint pages (for students to follow their ideas on the lines)
Blank pages (for students who wish to draw their own prints and then ideas)
Lined paper or student ELA notebooks
Coloured markers (thin and thick)


Ensure there are enough Fingerprint pages and blank pages for each student to choose
Have some finished works to display as examples.
Ensure students have enough space to work, some may want to move into the hallway
or if possible the library, books rooms where necessary.
Complete a simplistic brainstorming web on the whiteboard about you prior to class. Put
<MS. HARDY> in the centre and have a number of words/activities/passions that define
you in the web. Cover the drawing with a blank sheet of paper for now.
Ensure the classroom is set up so that students are sitting in 2s or 3s. They can have a
shoulder partner to help them work on this project.
Have the materials piled at the front of the classroom

Introduction Time

This lesson is designed for a 45 minute English Language Arts class. It

operates from a learner centered ideology with lots of hands-on experiential 5 mins
Welcome the class - remind the students how in science they
learned about how each of us have unique fingerprints and that we
are going to continue that lesson into English Language Arts today.
Explain that its going to be used as inspiration for our creating our
own identity texts

Body Time

Introduce main Tell students that we are going to be exploring our 6 min
activity identity and will be developing an identity text over
the next couple of lessons. Explain the process
(brainstorm about self, get others input, create draft,
get feedback and edit, revise and produce final piece).

3501 Mini Unit Plan: Lesson 3 Josh Pidkowa | Alison Armitage | Madeleine Hardy

Show the class some of the completed projects. Point out

parts of the pieces that are important to have for a
complete project. Ex. colourful, descriptive words,
individual (show that they are all different from each
other), that they are on an enlarged fingerprint, it has
their name etc.

Group Explain to the class that we are going to (as a class) 8 mins
brainstorm & brainstorm some guiding questions or writing
work through prompts that will help us. Describe what we mean
example when we say writing prompts. Remind students that
when we are brainstorming we dont need to worry
too much about perfect spelling or grammar. We want
to focus on getting ideas out and on paper! The editing
process will come later. Remind students that we dont
have to use ALL the ideas in our final product, but its
best to have LOTS of ideas to pull from.

Start brainstorming and record answers on the board.

Ex. Im good at, I think I am, When I grow up I want to be,
My friends/family describe me as, I am, I am not, I like, I
dont like, I know how to, What I really enjoy doing, I
could lose hours doing, I cant wait to, My favourite
(subject/colour/food/person etc.), I come from, My
motto is, etc.

If students are struggling show what youve done so far.

Talk through your example and scaffold (verbalize
your thinking process) for the class of how you created
what you did. Then return to the brainstorming the
stems on the board. Leave these up or transfer them to
a paper that you can post next class to continue this
process. Explain that this is the first step:

The second step should be getting others input! Tell

students that they will be able to quietly work with
their shoulder partner(s) to get ideas and different
words to describe themselves. Remind students that
all suggestions to each other should be positive and
nice. Explain to students that its okay to steal ideas. If

3501 Mini Unit Plan: Lesson 3 Josh Pidkowa | Alison Armitage | Madeleine Hardy

they hear other ideas around the classroom they can

be inspired and thats okay!

Verbal check-in: ask the class if they understand what

theyre being asked to do/create. If they need more
describing, continue to explain. If students arent
giving any indication, ask them to do a thumbs
up/middle/down gauge. Up = got it & ready to start
working. Middle = need a little more clarification.
Down = dont understand! Help! If theres most
students who have the up gauge - you can gather a
smaller group up front of the middle and down
gaugers and work through it together allowing the rest
of the class to get started.

Explain that for those students that are super speedy with
this brainstorming process their next step will be to
brainstorm 1-3 goals for themselves for their grade 6
year. You can focus more on scaffolding goal setting
next lesson.

Show them the materials at the front of the classroom.

They should use the blank page for their personal web.
Hand them out.

Work time: Walk around and monitor student progress. Ensure 20 mins
brainstorming & students are on task and ask probing questions or give
draft suggestions to illicit more descriptive words or more

If students are struggling to brainstorm ideas you could

provide a graphic organizer or a list of prompts with
blanks for students to fill in. This could also be given to
students that are sick and need to catch up next class!

About halfway through remind students to check-in with

their shoulder partners. Ask them to give each other
feedback and ideas to help their shoulder partners. If
students are really excited maybe take a 2 minute
reflective break (think-pair-share) - dim the lights, ask
students to close their eyes and think about their shoulder
partner. Ask prompting questions like: t hink about what

3501 Mini Unit Plan: Lesson 3 Josh Pidkowa | Alison Armitage | Madeleine Hardy

makes their shoulder partner unique, whats one thing your

shoulder partner is good at? Why would you want to be your
shoulder partner? Etc.

Keeping their eyes closed, ask students to raise their hand

if they have something positive to share with their
shoulder partner about their shoulder partner (this
indicates to you where you might need to help and tells
you if theyre ready to share). Once the majority of the
class has ideas, turn the lights back on, ask everyone to
open their eyes and get them to share with each other.
Remind them to switch partners.

Conclusion Time

Bring the class back together and as they are coming into the class ask 1-2 5 mins
students who you have observed to be on the right path to present what their
thoughts are so far when called upon. This way they have warning they will be
asked to share and can take a few minutes to prepare.
Have the 2 students present their ideas so far. If they have goals ask
them to share them. This hopefully will help the class be on the right
track. Ask the class what they liked about the ideas shared.
Remind the class that even though two people can have the same
interests it still makes them unique because we are interested in
different ways so the students should be more specific. Try to have
examples with specific students (for example student K could love
horseback riding and student J could love horse-jumping. Try to have
students not just say I love horses.)
For homework ask the students to think about what interests them at
home and what are some goals they have for Grade 6. Tell them to
write their ideas down for the next class so they dont forget.
Have the class hand in their brainstorming sheets, and their ideas for
an unique art piece, for formative assessment.

Observe students brainstorming during the work period (Learning objective #1)
Monitor and note student engagement during the class example (Learning objective #1
& #2)
Observe students sharing observations about each other (use the lights off/hand up -
think/pair/share activity to assess) (Learning objective #2)
Post-activity collect their brainstorming sheets and assess (formative) progress
(Learning objective #3 & #4)

3501 Mini Unit Plan: Lesson 3 Josh Pidkowa | Alison Armitage | Madeleine Hardy

Additional Notes:
While reviewing formative assessment pieces such as brainstorming sheet and art piece
ideas, make a list of students who require more direction. If necessary adapt next lesson
to include more description if most students are not on the right path.

3501 Mini Unit Plan: Lesson 3 Josh Pidkowa | Alison Armitage | Madeleine Hardy

Principal Pocus October 31, 2017

6455 Macleod Trail S
Calgary, AB
T2H 0K8

Dear Ms. Hardys Grade 6 class,

Thank you so much for catching Mr. Pidkowa our Grade 6 candy thief. It is nice to have him
under surveillance and I believe he has learned his lesson not to steal and understands that
what he did was wrong, however, I must call upon you again. Crime never sleeps.

There is a new problem the school is facing. The Grade 1 class has had their Halloween candy
stolen as well, but not by Mr. Pidkowa. He was with me at the time of the new robbery so we
believe there is another thief on the loose.

Can you please use the knowledge you have gained in your Investigation and Evidence Unit to
solve this new mystery? Ms. Hardy has all the details and will go over it with you. This case
needs to be solved quickly since it is Halloween today and the grade ones need that candy.

We know you can do it and are counting on you to solve this case.

Thank you and good luck,

Principal Pocus

3501 Mini Unit Plan: Lesson 3 Josh Pidkowa | Alison Armitage | Madeleine Hardy

Example of a completed thumb identity print

3501 Mini Unit Plan: Lesson 3 Josh Pidkowa | Alison Armitage | Madeleine Hardy

Example of a template for a thumbprint final product.

3501 Mini Unit Plan: Lesson 3 Josh Pidkowa | Alison Armitage | Madeleine Hardy

Example of Ms. Hardys web on the board