Science Notebooks: Grade 6

Teachers will guide students in setting up their notebook for the unit. Suggestions for notebooks are:

  • Title Page-Have students decorate it to make it their own. Research shows that if students have their photo on the title page and decorate it, they feel a sense of ownership and will be less likely to lose their notebook.
  • Table of Contents
  • Page 1 Word Bank
  • Pages 5 and 6 (side by side) Concept Map
  • Pages 7 and 8 Brochure Extensions
  • Page 9 and 10 “I Wonder”

Place four charts on the wall labeled:

  • “Word Bank”-New vocabulary should be added to the word bank, daily.
  • “Concept Map”- Veterinary Research should be written in the bubble. During daily oral reflection, students should use the vocabulary from the word bank to add to the concept map. Arrows should be used to link the vocabulary. Actions verbs should be written on the arrows to connect the vocabulary. This is what makes the map “conceptual”. If you haven’t used this before, it can be a powerful tool to build a deeper understanding of vocabulary
  • “Brochure Extensions”-At any time during the unit, students should brainstorm and write ideas for their brochure on the chart so they’ll have topics to choose from at the end of the unit.
  • “I Wonder”-Throughout the entire unit students should document questions on the chart for further research and discovery.

concept map word bank

For the remainder of the unit, the charts should be updated with students' contributions of words/concepts/extensions/questions on the four charts. Use a different color marker each day updates are made, if desired. Encourage students to add their words or ideas to the classroom charts and to their notebooks for further class sharing and discussion. Reflections and Quick Writes can be added to the notebooks as needed.

Optional extension: The following books have been chosen to integrate the 6th grade Language Arts and Social Studies Standards:
Horse Tales by June Crebbin, a collection of stories about horses including excerpts from novels, mythology and folklore from around the world. (Reading level Grades 4-8)
Blood Red Horse by K.M. Grant. Historical fiction about the Crusades, a young man’s coming of age, loyalty, honor and a beloved red horse. (Reading level Grades 5-9)
All my Patients have Tales: Favorite Stories from a Vets Practice, by D.V.M Jeff Wells. Thirty-six heart-felt and laugh out-loud stories written by a vet who treated everything from circus animals to miniature pigs. Includes many dog, cat and horse anecdotes. (Reading level Grades 6-12)

The project described is supported by a Science Education Partnership Award (SEPA) from the Office of Research Infrastructure Programs (ORIP), a component of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

NIH . . . Turning Discovery Into Health

Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of ORIP or NIH.

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