Green Chemistry: Is Water, Water?

byFrancisca Eunice G. Rebullida
This curriculum unit is designed for fourth and fifth grade students in English as a Second Language but could be modified for students in the mainstreamed classes. The students are about nine to ten years old. The water curriculum unit is aligned with the state standards objectives. Teachers can teach this unit from two to three weeks. One of the most important features of this curriculum unit is teaching science across the curriculum. Teachers will find the unit integration in the content areas of reading, science and math. Also, it includes teaching the four areas of listening, speaking, reading and writing for second language learners. The focus of the curriculum unit is water. The goal of this unit is to make second language learners understand the importance of water in science and apply their reading skills to read in the science content. There are three main ideas in this curriculum unit: the history of water; how water is purified in simple ways; and how do we conserve our water. The first principle of Green Chemistry, that it is better to prevent waste than to treat or clean up waste after it is formed, will be integrated in the unit's topics. Using children's literature science is one way of getting the students engaged in learning. These fascinating and colorful illustrated books for children are namely: "The Lorax" written by Dr. Seuss; "S is for Save the Planet" written by Bradherzog; and "The Drop in My Drink" by Hooper. Using literature to teach science will make learning meaningful for the students in the science content area. At the end of the curriculum unit is celebrating water with different activities assigned to each group of students in class. Find out more when you use this unit with your fourth and fifth grade students.

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