Wednesday, February 8, 2012

The Water Cycle

That is one catchy title up there, if I do say so meself!

This week I introduced the Water Cycle and reinforced some of those tricky-for-language-learners terms (con-den-sa-tion; e-vap-or-a-tion - eek) and we did a super kinesthetic activity to reach the expectations: we made water cycle bracelets! I got this idea a long time ago from someone else, but do you think I could remember from whom? Of course not - so I googled it {Fact: "googled" is considered a transitive verb, is an entry in the OED (since 2006, actually!) and was first used by Larry Page himself. To further its merit, it was deemed the "most useful word" in 2002. Thanks, wikipedia! But I digress...}. As it turns out, this a fairly common activity! Ha - and I thought I was being interesting and thinking outside the box. Not to worry, I still think it's a great idea.

I separated yellow, green, white, and blue beads for each student in my class. I only separated one of each colour to ensure sanity maintenance during the lesson - any more and I'm sure I would have had my hands full with kids not following in sequence/stringing to slowly/stringing too quickly/eerrrgg. {I should note that ideally, there would be a clear bead in there to more closely represent the evaporation stage, but my big bin of IKEA beads just didn't have any so - ah, well.}

Yellow represents the sun, which heats up the water on the earth {green - or ideally dark blue, but again, ah, well}, which then evaporates {this would be the clear bead...} and travels up to clouds {white} where the vapour cools and condenses, causing precipitation {light blue}. And, as you know, we start the cycle over again... My students ate it right up! Today during parent-student-teacher conferences I got a few knowing chuckles from parents for still having mine strapped to my wrist. Great success!

I highly recommend using this lesson as a memorable and hands-on activity. Here is the worksheet I made for students to complete.

The cute little border is from Mel at From the Pond.

Happy blogging, all!


  1. Love this one Amanda :)

    So for the worksheets that you make up, let's say for science. Do you have duotangs that you would put them all in ? Also, would you then collect them and then give them a mark out of 4 then on their overal comprehension for your own books ? Thanks for the ideas !! Miss ya

  2. Ps I love MEL's blogs too ! So do you just download her worksheets for free then ? Did you have to make a password and username ?

  3. I just download her free clip art because she is fantastic and offers a lot! I don't have a username...?
    I glue all worksheets into their notebooks. It's time-consuming, but since I had so many pages coming in to me in the first few months without names, I figured it was easier than dealing with that frustration. Plus, fairly often the maids do my student's homework so when I hold up the no-names in front of the class, they literally have no idea if it is their work or not.
    I tally their Math and Language homework each month, but not Science. Parents don't care as much about other subjects here. For comprehension, specifically for this, I made an oral assessment that I'll do individually in the next lesson. We will start with a mini-review and then the class will work on labeling a water cycle diagram and completing a word search. Easy peasy!