Monday, March 31, 2014

Observation #6

Observation #6

El agua de el ecosistema se bajo mas de el nivel donde estaba la ultima vez que hicimos nuestras observaciones. Ay mucha vida en el agua, igual con los camarones se miran mas grandes, ahora el caracol es visible en contraposición de la ultima vez. El agua también se mira mas turbio que la ultima vez y las plantas están creciendo algo extraño en el tallo, y están creciendo a un ritmo lento. La elodia también esta creciendo pero mas recio que las plantas.

In what ways has our dual ecosystem become consistent with what we have learned about constructivist science instruction from out text book?

Our ideas are being developed and constructed through hands on and observations, which has been emphasized greatly in the text book, and from a constructivist teacher's point of view. We are experiencing hands on experiments that is ultimately going to facilitate to our learning. Inquiry can be easily integrated in this project due to the various actions we can take (process skills). This ongoing experiment is an excellent definition of a constructivist model because it allows the students to formulate their own thoughts. They have to figure out why their ecosystem is working or why it't not, why their plants aren't as tall as the others, or even why they animals live or die. It gives the students great freedom because they are able to reflect on it however they want to. They state what they see and try to explain why it's like that.
This was our first time doing an ecosystem, so none of us had any experience with it, but we were able to work it out. It's a great way to get a class to change to a constructivist method because it let's the teacher regulate it less and less as time goes. Setting guidelines in the beginning like most students are used to and as time progresses, begin to take them away until they students are completely in charge of what happens. As a group we can all agree that this is the type of experiment that students like to do because they see what they've created and have the ability to watch it grow. It portrays science in a completely new light that most students don't have the chance to see.

Bottom Ecosystem
(Elodea & Snail)
Bird's Eye-View of Terrestrial Ecosystem and Pepper Plants
3 Pepper Plants and their Heights
Tallest Pepper Plant

Monday, March 24, 2014

Observation #5

Los caracoles parecen estar muerto, sin embargo los camarones siguen activos; Elodea es todavía muy vivo. El agua se ha vuelto más oscuro que la última vez se observó, además, también ha bajado desde la última vez que observamos. Los caracoles están muertos, no se saben la causa.  La planta esta creciendo unas espinitas blancas en el tallo.

With magnifying glass
Daphnia se puede mirar mas claramente, una de la planta que estaba mas chica ahora esta casi igual de  la planta anterior. El agua aparece  ser mas sucio por causa de la daphnia.
No se ve tanta condensación como las observaciones previas. 

Se ve que mas raíces están creciendo en la planta.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Entry #3

From a glance:

·      Growth has finally occurred
·      One strand of string has been submerged
·      Water level has decreased, not much though
·      Condensation is less than last week’s
·      More shrimp life is apparent; baby shrimp
·      Elodea looks the same


We have concluded that allow students to draw something causes them to observe more carefully because they have to be aware of the details so they could create a proper drawing. It is also a good way to replace writing and provides a more enjoyable activity for those students who are artistically inclined, whom seem to be left out in the traditional classroom. Students will also generally connect more with the experiment by having them draw their observations. Drawing allows the student to possibly detect miniature details that a digital picture would lack in. So drawing not only helps develop their artistic skills and observation skills, but also fosters a developing classroom community while the students work together. When you draw something it’s like taking a magnifying glass and scrutinizing the detail, which further advances learning.  

There is life!

 String submersion

 Our Versions of the Dual Ecosystem 

                     Jose Molina

 It is important to note that we all see the ecosystems differently, it is also amazing to see the dual ecosystems through everyone else's eyes, the drawings were interesting, and brought up more group discussions among all of us. 
                                                                        Norma Acosta 

 Mayra Banda  

                                                                                               Alejandro Sifuentes 
We all concluded that the reason why we saw growth in our plants, was because one of the strings submerged into the lower section. We believe that was a determined factor in the reason why we finally saw growth of our plants. It was so surprising to see how all of our pictures are so different. Each and one of the pictures have some common representation, but what differentiate our pictures, was that some of us added more details to some of the pictures.  

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Entry #2

  1. Terrestrial sections shows no seed life
  2. High amount of condensation in terrestrial section

  1. Water level is a little bit below last week’s level
  2. Shrimp and snails are still alive
  3. Water looks a bit murky
  4. Daphnia seems well
  5. Green marker used for week 2 water level
  6. Red marker for week 1 water level
  7. Theories as to why the seed didn’t grow:
    • Not enough water going through the string
    • String is not submerged
    • Soil might not have been moist enough
    • Cap is too close to the water

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Entry #1

1) Materials Needed for your eco system
 The materials required for our eco system were 2.5 Dixie cup of gravel that was added to the bottom bottle, 745 mL of spring water, potting soil, string, a 25 cm elodea plant, 2 snails, 10 daphnia, 5 seeds of pepper, 4 shrimps, and two plastic bottles to create the ecosystem.
2) A detailed description of the procedure for putting together the dual ecosystem
 We first added 2.5 Dixie cups of gravel into the bottom bottle, then we added 745 mL of water, and finally we added 4 shrimp, 2 snails, 10 daphnia, and a 25 cm long elodea plant into the bottom bottle. We put this container aside and started working on the terrestrial section. Before filling up this section with potting soil we first put a string that would go from the terrestrial section into the bottom section through the bottle cap of the terrestrial section. Then we added 5 seeds of pepper and dampened the soil. Finally we sealed up the containers with a good amount of tape.
3) Any initial data you recorded
 All our living material seemed to be doing fine after we sealed it up. We may have added a little bit too much water because the water level is quite close to the bottle cap, but it is not touching it!
4) Personal/group reflection on the scientific PROCESS you learned about
 This activity highlights the importance of the scientific process. There are many times when one can mess up if they are not following the procedure correctly. Also, some observations can be missed if you do not keep them in mind. The adding of the materials must be done carefully and jotted down quickly or else it will be difficult to analyze the results correctly.
5) Personal/group reflection on the scientific CONTENT you learned about
I learned about how Daphnia can serve like a green light for safe water. I thought that was pretty neat and definitely applicable to real life. I also learned about the proper way of planting a seed. I used to always think it was as simple as letting them lay on the soil, but we actually need to put them in deep and dampened the soil.
6) Reflection on the ecosystem in terms of your own teaching (can include issues related to bilingual education).
 I can already see how great this activity can be for elementary students, especially because of the high amount of interaction it requires among peers. It is a great way to not only get children to learn about the scientific process but also give them an opportunity to interact with each other like scientists. In terms of bilingual education, I can see the English language learners teaching the mainstream students words from their own language pertaining to the materials of the ecosystem. English language learners can also learn plenty of scientific vocabulary because they can simply ask their peers what certain words mean without feeling embarrassed about asking the teacher.