Identification: Teacher Notes
Materials: Have ready and hidden-
*Stereoscopes or jeweler's loupes
For the discussion we will ask the question, "Is it alive?". The teacher will lead this discussion and note taking to wonder when things are alive or inanimate.
To begin the lesson, ask the students to form groups and come up with what they think it takes to determine if a thing is living or what are the characteristics of life. Then return to the whole group and make a master list of all original ideas. With the master list, have each student group create a concept map with "Characteristics of Life" at the top. This will be compared with a concept map at the end of this lesson. A grade could be given for completion of the concept map.
We are playing a bit of "let's pretend we are walking through the desert" for the activity part of this. The students will be asked to look at the samples on the floor while they are standing. Then they will be asked to look at it on their desks, then under some magnification. Each of these should open up a perspective that wasn't available.
These can be small samples, no larger than a twenty-five cent piece. . Each student group would be asked to identify as many differences as possible. There would be an amassing of all the information at the end of the observation period. This would set into motion the student's minds and eyes.
Activity Assessment could be a simple laboratory practical where the student must correctly identify the organism under the stereoscope. The worksheet could be assessed using rubric A-1.