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Katie Holmes    

Learning Center  

EDCI 3481  



I implemented  a  science-­‐learning  center  into  my  second  grade  classroom.  

The focus  of  the  center  was  plants  and  seeds.  This  subject  coincided  with  the  science   lessons  being  taught  in  the  classroom.  I  thought  it  was  important  for  the  center  to  be   relevant  to  the  material  they  were  studying,  so  the  knowledge  and  information   gained  in  the  center  would  be  meaningful  and  useful.  The  learning  center  included   scopes  on  a  rope,  which  was  relevant  because  the  students  attended  a  workshop  on   how  to  use  scopes  on  a  rope  a  few  days  before  the  center  was  implemented.  The   information  and  technology  used  in  the  center  was  useful  and  relevant  to  their   current  lessons.      

I offered  many  activities  in  the  center,  all  of  which  could  be  done  with  a  

partner. I  provided  a  book  of  “I  can  activities”  that  informed  the  students  of  all  the   activities  available  in  the  center.  The  students  could  use  the  computers  to  view   select  websites  explaining,  seed  dispersal,  the  parts  of  a  plant  and  how  a  plant   grows.  I  pulled  all  the  websites  up  before  opening  the  center  to  ensure  the  students   were  using  their  time  on  the  computers  effectively.    I  provided  a  book  on  seeds  and   plants  as  a  resource  to  review  the  parts  of  a  seed,  parts  of  a  plant  and  the  life  cycle  of   a  plant.  I  created  matching  boards  for  the  parts  of  a  plant  and  the  life  cycle  of  a  plant.   Each  board  had  a  set  of  cards  that  velcroed  to  the  board  to  identify  the  parts  of  the   plant  or  put  the  stages  of  a  plant’s  life  cycle  in  order  from  beginning  to  end.  The   center  included  various  seeds  and  plants  to  be  viewed  through  the  scope  on  a  rope,  

the plants  were  on  paper  plates  so,  they  could  be  taken  apart  and  the  stems,  roots,   flowers  and  leaves  could  be  viewed.  The  various  seeds  provided  were  of  different,   shapes,  weights  and  textures  so  the  children  could  perform  tests  on  the  seeds  to  see   how  the  seeds  travel,  by  water,  wind  or  hitching  a  ride  on  animals  or  clothing.  To   test  the  seeds  I  put  seed  travel  kits  in  the  center,  which  contain  a  fan,  a  piece  of  felt   and  a  cup  of  water.  I  put  a  silk  plant  in  the  center  to  be  viewed  through  the  scope  on   a  rope  and  compared  the  real  plant  and  silk  plant.  I  also  provided  recording  sheets   for  each  of  the  activities  so  the  children  could  record  what  they  found  while   participating  in  the  activities.  The  plant-­‐learning  center  was  set  up  on  a  table  with  a   television  and  a  scope  on  a  rope.  Computers  are  close  to  the  station  so  the  students   can  access  the  websites  and  videos  easily.    The  area  surrounding  the  center  has   ample  floor  space  so  that  multiple  children  can  occupy  the  area  at  once.      

The activities  were  differentiated  based  on  the  different  types  of  learners  and  

different ability  levels.  There  were  activities  that  included  writing,  reading,   technology,  hands  on  opportunities  and  observation.  These  activities  provided  many   different  ways  to  participate  in  the  center,  based  on  the  different  types  of  learners,   auditory,  visual  and  kinesthetic  learners.  Visual  learners  would  enjoy  the  book  and   websites  provided,  as  well  as  the  pictures  on  the  matching  boards  and  the  various   materials  that  can  be  viewed  on  the  scope.  Auditory  learners  would  benefit  from   listening  to  the  video  or  website,  since  both  had  audio.  Auditory  learners  could   listen  to  another  child  read  the  book  and  benefit  from  listening  to  the  discussion   with  their  partner  in  the  center.  Kinesthetic  learners  will  enjoy  all  activities  in  this   center  because  every  activity  involves  some  aspect  of  hands  on  experience.    

The activities  in  the  center  also  range  from  difficult  to  easy.  The  activities  can  

all be  done  in  pairs,  so  this  will  help  children  work  on  teamwork  and  helping  each   other  understand.  The  matching  boards  are  the  only  activities  in  the  center  that   have  right  and  wrong  answers,  but  resources  are  provided  to  aid  in  finding  the   correct  answer,  such  as  the  websites,  video  and  the  book  all  provide  the  information   needed  to  correctly  answer  the  questions.  The  students  can  also  enlist  the  help  of   their  partner  to  work  on  the  activity.  The  scope  on  a  rope  is  a  difficult  activity,  just   because  it  is  fairly  new  technology  to  work  with,  but  the  students  had  a  workshop  to   familiarize  themselves  with  the  scopes.  The  observation  and  recording  worksheets   are  open  ended,  so  there  is  no  right  or  wrong  answer.  The  children  have  already   performed  the  seed  travel  activity  during  class,  so  they  should  be  familiar  with  it,   however  different  seeds  were  provided  to  make  the  activity  different  and  new.  All   the  activities  deal  with  different  aspects  of  a  plant,  from  the  parts,  life  cycle  and  the   seed  and  the  way  the  seed  travels  to  create  new  plants.  The  activities  are   differentiated  by  difficulty,  but  the  students  are  provided  with  the  resources  and   have  a  partner  to  complete  each  task.      

The students  will  rotate  through  the  center  daily.  The  class  goes  to  centers  

for 30  minutes  a  day  and  the  children  are  rotated  into  different  centers,  by  rotating   their  pictures  on  the  classroom  center  chart.  If  we  had  more  time  in  centers  I  would   set  up  a  timer  to  go  off  after  half  an  hour  and  the  children  would  know  their  two   centers  to  rotate  to  during  that  hour,  by  use  of  the  classroom  center  chart.  The   centers  materials  will  be  easy  to  manage,  I  would  rotate  the  materials  once  all  of  the   children  had  a  chance  to  go  into  the  center.  The  plants  could  be  replaced  with  

different plants  and  seeds  and  different  activities  should  be  made  up  to  keep  the   children  engaged  and  interested  in  the  station.  Another  activity  the  children  could   do  in  the  center  as  a  replacement  would  be  planting  and  observing  their  own  seeds   and  finding  unique  ways  to  document  their  observations.  I  think  the  students  should   learn  to  manage  the  station  and  keep  it  clean  and  in  order.  To  ensure  that  the   students  are  capable  of  doing  this,  the  station  should  be  introduced  to  the  students   and  shown  each  activity  and  material  has  a  place  it  should  be  returned  to  once  they   have  finished  with  the  center.  The  center  is  small  and  can  be  managed  by  the   students,  if  they  are  taught  how  to  do  so.  The  materials  can  be  managed  easily  by   rotating  plants,  seeds  and  activities  weekly  to  keep  the  students  engaged  and   interested  in  the  center,  as  long  as  plants  are  relevant  in  the  classroom.      

Plant Learning Center