Teachers Network
Translate Translate English to Chinese Translate English to French
  Translate English to German Translate English to Italian Translate English to Japan
  Translate English to Korean Russian Translate English to Spanish
Lesson Plan Search
Our Lesson Plans
TeachNet Curriculum Units
Classroom Specials
Popular Teacher Designed Activities
TeachNet NYC Dirctory of Lesson Plans

VIDEOS FOR TEACHERS
RESOURCES
Teachers Network Leadership Institute
How-To Articles
Videos About Teaching
Effective Teachers Website
Lesson Plans
TeachNet Curriculum Units
Classroom Specials
Teacher Research
For NYC Teachers
For New Teachers
HOW-TO ARTICLES
TEACHER RESEARCH
LINKS

GRANT WINNERS
TeachNet Grant:
Lesson Plans
2010
TeachNet Grant Winners
2009
TeachNet Grant Winners
Adaptor Grant Winners
2008
TeachNet Grant Winners
Adaptor Grant Winners
2007
TeachNet Grant Winners
Adaptor Grant Winners
Other Grant Winners
Power-to-Learn
Math and Science Learning
Ready-Set-Tech
Impact II
Grant Resources
Grant How-To's
Free Resources for Teachers
ABOUT
Our Mission
Funders
   Pacesetters
   Benefactors
   Donors
   Sponsors
   Contributors
   Friends
Press
   Articles
   Press Releases
Awards
   Cine
   Silver Reel
   2002 Educational Publishers Award

Sitemap

 

Impact II: Projects & Lesson Plans: Schoolyard Trees and Me!
Schoolyard Trees and Me!

HOW IT WORKS
Early in September, students introduce themselves and explore who they are as individuals and as members of a classroom community. They use graphic organizers to compare and contrast themselves to classmates and teachers. This frames the first theme of the social studies curriculum (“Myself and Others”) and provides a springboard into science. As they discuss similarities, students find that they are all living! This view then broadens to plants and animals. In journals, they observe and describe the changes occurring in plants and animals right in the schoolyard. They collect and examine seeds, leaves, and bark from trees. They design a bulletin board depicting each student as a seed, and make predictions (in booklets, drawings, and writings) about how planted seeds will grow and change during the year and beyond. Digital portraits are taken and incorporated onto the board. Seed-germination activities give hands-on experience.

Next, Lois Ehlert’s Red Leaf, Yellow Leaf illustrates the life cycle of a plant via literature. The leaf collection is used to research the names of local trees using guides in the science center. Children also gather around the computer in small groups to use the Internet for information about trees. This transitions into a math lesson focusing on shapes to sort and identify leaves. Students learn the common names of at least three local trees and teach them to family members. Autumn leaf collecting is used to create leaf-print shirts with red, orange, and brown acrylic paint. Children print the word “fall” or “autumn” on their shirts using alphabet letter sponges and wear them on a trip to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. They learn the Raffi song “Roots and Shoots Everywhere,” which says that children are the “roots and shoots” of our world, and dance to it after making costumes using leaf-printing techniques and oversized t-shirts. A springtime trip to Central Park illustrates the relationships between living and non-living things in the environment (Urban Park Ranger Ecology Program). Throughout the year, activities are documented and become a Microsoft Power-Point presentation titled Schoolyard Trees and Me! 

THE STUDENTS
The participants were twenty-five enthusiastic bilingual multicultural kindergarten students at P.S. 20 in the Lower East Side of Manhattan. This program can easily adapt to all grade levels. Younger children will require more guidance and assistance with tools and supplies.

THE STAFF
Aurora Olivieri is in her sixth year of teaching elementary school. She has a Master’s Degree in Education and a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology. She was recently awarded a Local Learning Fellowship from City Lore. Elizabeth Dickerson, a paraprofessional who works with her, has fifteen years of experience and has taught dance and cheerleading in after-school programs for the past seven years. She also tutors students using a variety of computer programs designed to advance reading ability.

WHAT YOU NEED
To complete this program you need a computer, a digital camera to document the children’s activities, tree identification books, T-shirts, acrylic non-toxic fabric paint, sponge alphabet letters, the “Let’s Play” CD by Raffi, a CD and cassette player with headphones, and classroom literature about seeds, trees, and the ecology.

OVERALL VALUE
Schoolyard Trees and Me! enables children to attain valuable concepts that embrace many curricular areas. Students see themselves as part of the scheme of the living world and gain pride by teaching others. Throughout the year, learning is a community activity, so the children grew socially and intellectually.  

 

View the Curriculum Unit/Dissemination Packet

CURRICULUM AREAS
Science
Social Studies
Art
Math
Language Arts
Music
Physical Education
Technology

GRADES
K-6

MORE INFORMATION

Aurora Olivieri
P.S. 20
166 Essex Street
New York, NY 10002
Nyc_aurora@yahoo.com

Principal
Leonard Golubchick

IMPACT II 
Catalog 2003-2004

 

Come across an outdated link?
Please visit The Wayback Machine to find what you are looking for.

 

Journey Back to the Great Before