Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Introduction to Classification

Jacqueline Roberts
Bay District Schools

Description

Classification is a systematic method used to diversify, categorize and organize animate and inanimate objects. Students explore these relationships by designing a classification system.

Standards

Florida Sunshine State Standards
LA.C.1.4.3
The student uses effective strategies for informal and formal discussions, including listening actively and reflectively, connecting to and building on the ideas of a previous speaker, and respecting the viewpoints of others.

SC.G.1.4.1
The student knows of the great diversity and interdependence of living things.

Florida Process Standards
Effective Communicators
02 Florida students communicate in English and other languages using information, concepts, prose, symbols, reports, audio and video recordings, speeches, graphic displays, and computer-based programs.

Critical and Creative Thinkers
04 Florida students use creative thinking skills to generate new ideas, make the best decision, recognize and solve problems through reasoning, interpret symbolic data, and develop efficient techniques for lifelong learning.

Cooperative Workers
08 Florida students work cooperatively to successfully complete a project or activity.

Materials

WHOLE GROUP ACTIVITY 1 - Buttons or other similar objects (beans, shells, paper shapes-square, rectangle, triangle and/or circle, athletic equipment, shoes, nails, screws, corks, leaves etc.) 6 - 15 PER GROUP.
STUDENT ACTIVITY 1 - Leaves or photocopies of leaves, (general assortment, suggest inclusion of evergreen and broadleaf specimens) 6-15 PER GROUP
STUDENT ACTIVITY 2 - pictures or a list of animals, (general assortment, suggest inclusion of terrestrial and non-terrestrial specimens) 6-15 PER GROUP
Chart paper/posted paper
Overhead projector
Marker

RESOURCES:
Johnson, George B., Biology: Visualizing Life. Holt, Rhinehart and Winston, Inc., Orlando, Florida, 1994 and 1998.

Kaskel, Albert., Hummer, Paul J. and Daniel, Lucille. Biology: An Everyday Experience. Charles E. Merrill Publishing Co., Columbus, Ohio 1988.

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES: (optional but helpful)
-Anderson, Robert., Guide to Florida Trees, Winner Enterprises, January 1988.

-Forest Trees of Florida, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer
Service., 1999 ed.

WEB LINKS:

CLASSIFICATION OF LIVING THINGS
http://www.daphne.palomar.edu/animal/ CLASSIFYING OF PLANTS AND ANIMALS
http://sln2.fi.edu/tfi/units/life/classify/
TAXONOMY
http://encarta.msn.com/find/Concise.asp?ti=04574000
ANIMAL DIVERSITY
http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/

Preparations

1. Review definitions of property.
2. Review definition of attribute.
3. Review definition of classification.
4. Review definition of diversity.
5. Understand the following leaf terminology: simple leaf, compound leaf; leaf shape (lance, oval, heart, circular, triangle and elliptical); leaf arrangement (alternate,
opposite); leaf margins (smooth, wavy, toothed, lobed).
6. Understand the terms terrestrial and non-terrestrial and their implications
7. Keeping in mind the number of students participating in this activity, teacher should provide identical sets of 6-15 buttons for each lab station or group of 2-3 students. The teacher is not limited to suggested items but students groups should have identical sets.
8. Take inventory of supplies and materials necessary to complete lesson and secures these items.
9. Organizes lab groups.
10. Set up PRACTICE 1: CLASSIFICATION - SUPERMARKET
11. Set up STUDENT ACTIVITY 1:CLASSIFICATION: BUTTONS (student lab)
12. Set up STUDENT ACTIVITY 2: CLASSIFICATION OF LEAVES (student lab)
13. Set up STUDENT ACTIVITY 3: CLASSIFICATION OF ANIMALS (student lab)

Procedures

PRIOR KNOWLEDGE AND/ OR CLASS DISCUSSION NECESSARY BEFORE BEGINNING THIS ACTIVITY.

PRIOR KNOWLEDGE
1. Understands definition of classification.
2. Understands definition of property.
3. Understand the definition of attributes.
4. Understands definition of diversity.
5. Understands how diversity is used to classify.
6. Understands that a classification system is flexible and is subject to change as new discoveries are made.
7. Understands that there is no correct or incorrect system of classification.
8. Understands the following terminology: evergreen; broad leaf; simple leaf; compound leaf; leaf shapes (lance, oval, heart, circular, triangle, and elliptical); leaf arrangement (alternate, opposite); leaf margins (smooth, wavy, toothed, lobed).
9. Understands the terms terrestrial and non-terrestrial and their implications.
10.Understands that assessment is based on student oral presentation of classification chart and laboratory work.

WHOLE GROUP PREPARATION: CLASSIFICATION

1. WHOLE CLASS DISCUSSION: BRAINSTORM.
a. Explain why we give names to things.
b. Why do we group and classifying things?
c. Explain the advantages of grouping and classifying things?
d. Explain diversity.
e. Explain how diversity can help classify things.
f. How are things grouped and classified in the science lab?
g. Do you group and classify things in your home? Explain.

2. TEACHER/ STUDENT PRACTICE: BRAINSTORM (The Grocery Store)
a. Students identify 10-15 items (more if you wish) found in a grocery store.
b. Teacher records student list on blackboard or overhead projector.
c. Students discuss criteria for organizing items.
d. Teacher records criteria for organizing items.
e. Students come to a consensus for criteria used to organize items. (Teacher reminds students that there is no correct or incorrect way to organize items.
Students, however, must explain their rationale for placement of item into a specific classification.
f. Teacher and students use agreed upon criteria to develop a classification chart.
(SEE ATTACHMENT 1 in attached file)

WHOLE GROUP ACTIVITY : CLASSIFYING BUTTONS (Cooperative Learning Model - can be done with teacher assistance if students have difficulty with concept.)
1. Students work in small groups, 2 to 3 students per group.

2. Students list 3-4 observable characteristics for each button. (SEE ATTACHMENT 2 in attached file)

3. Students record information on data sheet.

4. Students compare observations to determine commonly shared properties.

5. Students choose one characteristic and separate their buttons into two groups
(Group A has the chosen characteristic; Group B has an alternative characteristic).

6. Students make certain that as they separate the buttons into Group A and Group B each button reflects the characteristic of the group it is placed in.

7. GROUP A ONLY: Students chose a second characteristic for Group A and separate buttons again.

8. Students continue to separate Group A until the Group A can no longer be separated.

9. Student records results on data sheet.

10. Students repeat the same process for Group B.

11. Student records result for Group B on data sheet.

12. Students demonstrate their knowledge of classification by paring and sharing with another group. Each group, using the classification system developed by another group, sorts buttons that have been completely disorganized.

13. Students explain their classification system, its development, and rationale to the teacher.


STUDENT ACTIVITY 1: CLASSIFYING LEAVES (Cooperative Learning Model - can be done with teacher assistance if students have difficulty with concept.)
1. Students work in small groups, 2 to 3 students per group.

2. Students prepare data sheet with a practice classification model. (SEE ATTACHMENT 2 in attached file)

3. Students prepare chart paper for final classification model. (Model to be hung on the classroom wall or blackboard. This should not be completed until practice model is finalized.)

4. Students use their own creativity to develop criteria for classification model OR students use the following terminology to identify observable characteristics: evergreen; broad leaf; simple leaf; compound leaf; leaf shapes (lance, oval, heart, circular, triangle, and elliptical); leaf arrangement (alternate, opposite); leaf margins (smooth, wavy, toothed, lobed).

5. Students list 3-4 observable characteristics for each leaf.

6. Students record this information on data sheet.

7. Students compare observations to determine commonly shared properties.

8. Students choose one characteristic and separate their leaves into two groups (Group A has the chosen characteristic; Group B has an alternative characteristic).

9. Students make certain that as they separate the leaves into Group A and Group B each leaf reflects the characteristic of the group it is placed in.

10. GROUP A ONLY: Students chose a second characteristic for Group A and separate leaves again.

11. Students continue to separate Group A until the Group A can no longer separate.

12. Student records results on data sheet.

13. Students repeat the same process for Group B.

14. Student records result for Group B on data sheet.

15. Students transfer model to chart paper or poster board.

16. Students demonstrate their knowledge of classification by paring and sharing with another group. Each group, using the classification system developed by another group, sorts leaves that have been completely disorganized.

17. Students explain their classification system, its development, and rationale to the teacher.

STUDENT ACTIVITY 2: CLASSIFYING ANIMALS (Cooperative Learning Model - can be done with teacher assistance if students have difficulty with concept.)
1. Students work in small groups, 2 to 3 students per group.

2. Students prepare data sheet similar to data sheet for activity 1. (SEE ATTACHMENT 2 in attached file)

3. Students prepare chart paper for final classification model. (Model to be hung on the classroom wall or blackboard. This should not be completed until practice model is finalized.)

4. Students list 3-4 observable characteristics for each animal.

5. Students record this information on data sheet.

6. Students compare observations to determine commonly shared properties.

7. Students choose one characteristic and separate their animals into two groups(Group A has the chosen characteristic; Group B has an alternative characteristic).

8. Students make certain that as they separate the animals into Group A and Group B each animal reflects the characteristic of the group it is placed in.

9. GROUP A ONLY: Students chose a second characteristic for Group A and separate animals again.

10. Students continue to separate Group A until the Group A can no longer be separated.

11. Student records results on data sheet.

12. Students repeat the same process for Group B.

13. Student records result for Group B on data sheet.

14. Students demonstrate their knowledge of classification by paring and sharing with another group. Each group, using the classification system developed by the other group, sorts animals that have been completely disorganized.

15. Students transfer model to chart paper or poster board.

16. Students explain their classification system, its development, and rationale to the teacher.

Assessments

1. Student assessment - small group oral presentation. In a small group setting students explain how they developed their classification model(s).
(OR) Students write an essay describing their classification models. The essay should encompass the following:
a. What rationale did you use for each category?
b. What criteria did you use to differentiate among the categories?
c. Explain some of the difficulties and differences between classifying inanimate objects and living organisms.
d. Is it easier or more difficult to classify inanimate objects or living organisms? Explain why?
2. Laboratory assessment - rubric

Extensions

This activity is an introduction to: Building a Dichotomous Key (see Weblinks.)

Web Links

Web supplement for Introduction to Classification
Classifying of Plants and Animals

This is the continuation of the lesson you are currently looking at.
Building a Dichotomous Key

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