Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Living Things

The kids are learning about living and nonliving things. It's a pretty simple concept in general... by first grade definition a living thing needs food, water, and shelter to survive; they're also able to change/grow and reproduce (if you ever want an interesting challenge, try to introduce the concept of reproducing to a group of first graders and see what colorful conversations can come about... at one point I actually had to cut off a child and redirect back to a less detailed explanation).

During our wrap-up for the day, one child raised their hand and asked, "Is the Earth a living thing?" What a great question!! The kids were pretty divided as to their beliefs so we spent some time discussing it. Some kids insisted that the energy from sunlight qualified as food (although not entirely accurate, I thought it was a great addition to the conversation); many thought that rain proved that it needed water; most agreed that the Earth needs space/shelter (i.e the solar system) and also that the earth constantly changes. Ultimately we decided that the Earth is not actually living. The main catalysis in their decision was that the earth doesn't make baby-Earths. Instead of being a living thing, we decided that the Earth supports living things by giving them what they need to survive. I was super excited at how in-depth this conversation was - it was awesome to listen to them work it out!

No comments:

Related Posts with Thumbnails