Sunday, October 16, 2011

Fifth Grade: We finished our first Botany block

We have officially finished our first block of 5th grade, Botany. It took longer than I expected; I allotted 4 weeks and it took 6 but, I think we covered a lot of ground. We spent more time out of the house than I had planned, with field trips and meet ups, but those things are just as important as our bookwork.

Pages from nature journal

Here's what we accomplished:
  • Introduction to Botany — defining botany, it's importance, how it relates to man
  • Classification systems: taxonomy, seed leaves, life cycle (perennial, biennial, annual)
  • Daily nature walks to find specimens for each plant type. When we learned about fungus, we walked the neighborhood looking at various fungi. (This was our favorite botanical subject...we are still oohing and aahhing over the various fungi we find.)
  • Weekly walks to Apollo park to look at specimens and draw in our nature journals
  • Class with an herbalist, to identify various herbs and their uses
  • Spore prints
  • Leaf chromatography experiment
  • Identifying plants by leaf shape, venation, arrangement
  • Characteristics of lower plants and higher plants
  • Descriptions and identifying: fungus, algae, lichen, moss, ferns, conifers, flowering plants
  • Vascular system demonstration (celery and food coloring)
  • Paper Clay leaf imprints
Plant identification by leaves
Paper clay leaf imprints
In addition, we
  • Reviewed math concentrating on fractions
  • Reviewed the parts of speech
  • Learned about pronouns, common nouns, and proper nouns, as well as identifying the subject of a sentence
  • Read biographies of John Muir, Anna Comstock, Maria Sybillis Merian, and Jane Goodall
  • Started knitting socks
  • In the process of making wooden animals in woodwork
  • Piano lessons increased to 1 hour/week with the introduction of a monthly composer and instrument study
  • Made a weather tree and continue to chart daily weather patterns

Field trips included an historic mill, American Visionary Arts Museum, a nature scavenger hunt, several park explorations, Flinchbaugh's orchard, a weekend trip to North Carolina, the herb walk (mentioned above) and a weekend camping trip.
Sketching on our herb walk

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for the comments!