The kids had a wonderful time studying Latin America. I believe is truly a geographical wonderment stretching from the equator to the southern pole. This large geographical area provides one of the most diverse landscapes and unique locations in the world.
OK began by investigating the phenomenon of El Nino and La Nina, which is tied to much of the unique weather patterns and climate of Latin America. Learning that one wind, water, weather system can affect half of the globe was beyond awe and scope of understanding…..well, a phenomenon! OK also learned a lot from a Rain forest debate. They were given characters and arguments for or against preserving, using it as an income resource through tourism or logging and mining with little thought for the habitat. They did great asking meaningful questions and posing persuasive counter arguments.
MK used their knowledge to break the continent apart into specific areas of vegetation and habitat. They then mapped and studied the variety of creatures that reside in each habitat. From Savannah, Rain forest, Desert and Tundra to a huge ocean and river systems, Latin America has it all. They chose one creature from the Rain forest to study and made a guide book for our library. Our grand finale is a labeled, collaborative 3D Rain forest.
YK used the wide array of animals to dive further into classification and descriptive characteristics. They made maps, scientific drawings and a 2D layered rain forest complete with clues describing the micro-climates contained within. They ended with a celebratory Rain forest classification BINGO game!
PK also worked on descriptive language and general classification. Many are able to list enough characteristics to differentiate between and sloth or chinchilla- both of whom are cute, furry and four legged. So they had to move into more detail such as short legs, long ears or movement type. They placed animals into their correct habitats and even created a 4 layered rain forest! As usual, we ended our unit with a FREE PLAY SCIENCE DAY> they always love this time and are FULLY engaged and curious.