Moving forward from the first slide it zooms to the objectives where I tried to highlight some of the key vocabulary words that the students would be learning. The question that is posed at the end "what do you know?" was a great way to see what knowledge the students were bringing into the classroom. One pleasant surprise was that many students were familiar with roots homo- and hetero- from the biology terms homozygous and heterozygous. This led to a short discussion on the meaning of these root words and other places that the same roots come up.
The next slide reviews the definition of matter generally and students were asked to explain what matter is in their own words and then find examples of matter in the picture as a low risk collaboration activity to set them up for higher risk activities in the future. The lists that students put together were monitored by the instructor and a master list of types of matter was written onto the board for use in next activity.
Activity #1: Learning to Classify
Crosscutting Concept: Patterns
This activity was built to help students begin to develop the ability to look for patterns and sort information into those patterns. Students were informed that it was up to them to decide how many categories they would use and that it was up to them to determine what categories they would create. The instructors moved among the students to help keep students on task and ask guided questions about why students chose different categories. At the end of the activity students were invited to share their broad categories. The instructors were careful to remind students that there were many ways to categorize the list on the board and that there was no one correct answer. Emphasis was placed on consistency of the grouping and accuracy in the naming of the categories so that it reflected well on the objects that were within the category.
Activity #2: Classifying Matter
Crosscutting Concept: Patterns
A sheet divided into boxes that contained the name of an example of matter (i.e. water, oxygen, ozone, hydrochloric acid, saltwater, bronze, trail mix, iron, salad dressing, etc.) was handed out to students and they were instructed to cut the boxes apart and then separate the matter examples into two groups. The instructors moved around the room and helped guide the tables towards classifying the examples as either substances or mixtures without explicitly stating the names of each group. Students were encouraged to generate category names themselves and to justify why each item was placed into a category. Students who finished early were then encouraged to divide the categories into two subcategories each. Full-Sized sheets were used with magnets on the board at the end to classify into the master categories of substances and mixtures and the subcategories of elements, compounds, solutions and heterogeneous mixtures. Again, the emphasis was to get the students engaged in justifying why each item was in a certain category then giving the exact definitions of the categories.
The next slide after the activities introduces the central image which should be similar to how the last activity was presented on the board. We return to this image repeatedly and use it as a road map to help guide understanding of each category discussed later and how they are related to each other.
The next area that is explored in the Prezi are the master categories of substances and mixtures. The red text is meant to help students find the most important parts of the text to copy down. After each is explained students are asked to do a think/pair/share on the difference between the two.
After returning to the big idea picture and showing students where the substance and mixture categories are in relation to each other the subcategories of elements and compounds. Students were encouraged to review together the definition of substances and then elements and compounds were explained and labeled. The subcategories of mixtures were handled next in a similar manner. Images were given more than words to help illustrate the key differences between each.