Science and Teaching for Field Instructors

Worm Explorations

Worms can be cool and interesting, especially when observed up close! Worms are also easy to contain, so observing worms is a great opportunity for students to learn about organism’s structures and behaviors up close. In this lesson, students are invited to observe a worm and think about this Guiding Question: What body parts and behaviors help a worm survive? The instructor offers scaffolding for how students can observe and make scientific drawings of an organism and how to think about its structures and behaviors. Then, the group gets an opportunity to observe worms, discuss observations with peers, draw worms, and record observations of worm behaviors. Students will have the space and time to discuss what they noticed in pairs or as a group and make possible explanations for how worm structures and behaviors help worms to move, protect themselves, and survive. Optional extensions include reading a grade-level text about worms to the class, students searching for worms and evidence of worms in the garden, and singing a song about worms. Worm Explorations is designed to support an equitable and inclusive learning experience by using student-centered teaching practices, focusing the learning experience around a common part of nature to which every student has access, and scaffolding visual literacy and communication skills.

Students will…

• Observe worm body parts and behaviors.

• Discuss observations with their peers.

• Practice scientific illustration skills as they draw and write behaviors of their worms.

• Discuss how worm structures and behaviors help worms survive in their habitats.

• OPTIONAL: Read a book to access additional concepts about worm structures and behaviors, search for and observe worms or evidence of worms in the garden, or sing a song and think about worms.

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