It's time for your unit on plants. Excited or dreading it?
As I sat down to begin the writing of this post, my initial thought was to lead with, "I just love teaching plants!" And then it occurred to me that I begin almost all of my blog posts on biology topics in the same way. But the truth is.... I am excited to begin teaching almost any topic in biology. I love them all! I am sure that I have a least favorite unit to teach, but I would have to give that some thought to determine which unit it is. That is probably a topic for another blog post.....
So back to plants. Having taught school for over 30 years, I have taught thousands of students and have interacted with many, many teachers during this time. What I know is this: Students don't like studying about plants (too boring!) and teachers don't like teaching about plants (students don't like it!) As a result, I have noticed that many middle and high school life science and biology teachers will either:
- Leave plants out of the curriculum entirely, or ...
- Skip through it too quickly, leaving out the depth that this unit deserves.
I find plants fascinating. And because I do, I look for ways to make it interesting for my students. Not the topic of this blog post, but have you ever tried the C-Fern labs from Carolina Biological? My students literally shout with excitement when they see (using a microscope) the sperm cells swimming to the egg and the frantic mob of sperm that ensues around the egg.
Students love lab work and it definitely helps makes the class more interesting and exciting, but we all know that the "down and dirty" classroom days are needed to teach the information to our students. I developed this set of 34 warm up / bell ringer / interactive notebook pages to use with my students while teaching about plant evolution and classification. I am really excited about this set, and I feel that it is one of the best sets that I have written.
- If you complete these pages with your students, I guarantee that your students will come away with a solid foundation and knowledge base about the evolution and classification of plants.
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- These pages are NO PREP for the teacher!! I have done all of the prep work for you. You can spend more time concentrating on your teaching.
- Don't use these pages the same way everyday. Use some as warm ups, and others as homework assignments. Some will make great quizzes. I like to add a page or two of these as a lab station while carrying out our plant experiments. While lecturing, I will break up the lecture time by having my students complete one of the pages for review and reinforcement.
What topics are covered? These 34 warm up pages cover the topics commonly found in an introductory unit on plants. Highlights include: Characteristics of plants, the plant life cycle, alternation of generations, the evolution of plants, the transition of plants to land, classification of plants, nonvascular and vascular plants, the bryophytes, the liverwort life cycle, the moss life cycle, the fern life cycle, the seed plants, gymnosperms and angiosperms.
What topics are not covered? Plant structure and function, plant responses, and plant reproduction will be covered in future warm up sets. Stay tuned!
Thanks for stopping by, and have fun teaching!