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Impact II: Projects & Lesson Plans: Let's Get Crabby

Let’s Get Crabby

HOW IT WORKS
The children read the book A House for a Hermit Crab, written and illustrated by Eric Carle. This program is one aspect of a wider unit third-grade students do on invertebrates. Previous lessons are examinations of earthworms and crickets. In this lesson students work with a millipede and a hermit crab to continue the comparisons. The first group of students log on to: galexo.com/crabs and complete their quest sheet. The other students examine a hermit crab and millipede and complete their lab sheet. The instructional purpose of this program is to meet Life Science Concept Standards, namely understanding the characteristics of an organism and its environment. Even though students will only have a hermit crab to study in person, the Internet allows them to learn about a wide variety of crabs. 

THE STUDENTS
Let’s Get Crabby is designed for five third-grade classes of 28 students each. The range is  from above grade level to well below grade level. The students have no extensive technical background and each class meets once a week for 45 minutes. The classes normally meet in their classroom but for this lesson they met in our media center. The program can easily be adapted to other ages and achievement levels by modifying the quest and lab sheets or using only one. I don’t see how this program could be used by more than one class at a time, especially  since live animals are being used. This program meets the needs of all learners in the classroom because it is multi-sensory and the tasks can be modified to be challenging to those that need the challenge and doable by those whose skills are below grade level. 

THE STAFF
Teresa Caliari Olya has been teaching since 1978, and has taught grades K—8. This is her first year as a science cluster teacher. She has received five UFT mini-grants, a Staten Island Reading Association mini-grant and a SCAF grant from Common Cents’ Penny Harvest. This program can be done without assistance. 

WHAT YOU NEED
This program requires enough computers for half of the class to work comfortably. If you don’t have enough, the students can work in pairs. The other students work at a table with the hermit crabs and millipede. The computers must have Internet access and students need their lab sheets and pencils. You will need to purchase a couple of hermit crabs and set up a home for them. You can use a millipede but this unit could stand alone without it. You will also need to make copies of the quest and lab sheets as well as obtain a copy of A House for a Hermit Crab.

OVERALL VALUE
The children enjoy working on this program so much, they retain much more information than if someone stands in front of a classroom and lectures to them. Their enthusiasm is such that they cannot wait to do another ‘lab’ online. Having  one web site eliminates the search process and makes the collection of data a great deal easier. Teachers will want to adapt this for the classroom because by focusing on finding main ideas, it teaches the students how to teach themselves.  This program also meets several of the New York City Performance Standards in Science by developing the students comprehension and technology skills, as well as having them work separately and in teams to gather knowledge from multiple sources.

 

View the Curriculum Unit/Dissemination Packet

CURRICULUM AREAS
Science
Technology

GRADES
Grade 2-4

MORE INFORMATION  

Teresa Caliari Olya
Grantville School
P.S. 22
1860 Forest Avenue
Staten Island, NY 10303
teri@galexo.com
Principal: 
Karina Costantino

 

IMPACT II Catalog 2001-2002

 

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