Friday, October 16, 2015

Friday's Teacher Feature: Trisha Schlachter

Hey everyone! It's Friday TEACHER FEATURE TIME! I would like to welcome Trisha Schlachter from Ohio!

So,  without further ado, here's Trisha!

Classification is a tool used by scientists world-wide to identify fossils, categorize a newly discovered plant, locate an endangered animal, and sort leaves.  A dichotomous key is a type of classification key in which the reader is given two opposing descriptions to choose from in identifying the object.  The reader studies the object and continues to choose descriptions that match the object until the object is completely identified based on its given characteristics. 
Many examples of dichotomous keys are available from minions to monsters on the internet for teachers to use in their classrooms.  I personally like to use dichotomous keys around holiday time when students’ attention span is limited but learning is still necessary.  With the upcoming holiday season fast approaching, why not review dichotomous keys by having students create their own!  They can create one using pumpkin faces, monsters, or ghosts. 
I have a Halloween Candy Sort activity in which students sort various types of candy: chocolate and non-chocolate, fruit-flavored and not fruit-flavored, with nuts or without nuts, etc…  I provide each partner group a bag of the candy to touch and talk about the different characteristics.  This also allows for all types of learners to be engaged (visual, auditory, and kinesthetic).  As students are working, if you need some “differentiation” for those “fast” learners, add a gum drop or another chocolate and ask how that would change their keys. Hope you find this activity fun yet educational, too!  Happy Sorting! 

Be sure to check out Trisha's Teachers Pay Teachers Store by clicking on the image below.

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Happy Friday!

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