Saturday, April 20, 2013

Student Inquiry of the Week

I love when my students ask questions!  I can not always figure out the train of thought and I do not always have the answer, but it sure is fun to explore the topics my students are interested in.  This week I had a little girl ask me about the reason behind the shape of snakes' tongues. (Totally random!)  I do not like snakes and do not know much about them other than that they shed their skin and some are venomous.  (The hardest part is admitting I do not know!)  This little girl of course asked the question at a busy transition time, so I directed her to search the kid's encyclopedia computer program during afternoon computer time.  She was not able to find the answer there (though she learned a lot of other interesting snake facts!).  I googled the question and found some interesting webpages for us to explore.  The kids favorite was a youtube video of different types of snakes sticking out their tongue.  The joy of teaching in a mixed age classroom is that the older students were teaching the younger ones the names of the different varieties of snakes.  I learned a lot too! 

So, why do snakes have a split tongue? 
          Snakes use their tongue as their main sense to learn about their environment!
          (I debated putting a photo of a snake here, but I just can not bring myself to do that!)

While I was not wild about spending the afternoon looking at photos and videos of snakes, it sure was fun to see the children light up with excitement and learn so many new facts.  We built our vocabulary and communication skills as we described how a snake's tongue is shaped.  I, of course, tied this in to our study of shapes!  A snakes tongue is a rectangle with two triangles on the end.  We also worked on spelling the word snake.  It went perfectly with our study of the letter s!  Don't you love when it all comes together!  I am so proud of my inquisitive little English learners!

Check out their cute shape people!  (You can see the difference in their developmental levels.)

"Shapes come in all sizes" -A. (5)

"Don't forget the shorts!" -A. (7)

"Round head, long legs" -S. (5)

"Folded arms" -D. (5)

No comments:

Post a Comment