Science units are wonderful for teaching science concepts in a special education classroom… especially those with multiple grades. The science units help me differentiate and teach and reteach the science concepts year after year.
Focus On Vocabulary
Many students struggle with all of the vocabulary and language that come with science concepts. From scientific tools to words associated with weather, the solar system, five senses, etc. There are lots and lots of new words to focus on. Each science unit that we use have word wall cards and vocabulary tasks included.
Students also have different activities to practice the language and vocabulary in different ways. For example, there are 3 different levels of vocabulary grids included in each science unit. Here is an example from the scientific tools unit:
One of my favorite things about using science units are they already have the language woven throughout the unit. Students will hear and practice the vocabulary over and over which will lead to better understanding and usage.
Science time is a great place to integrate reading skills. Each science unit includes at least two books. Students can practice reading for information, interacting and attending to literacy and reading with fluency even in science!
Example of the books in the science units:
As I mentioned before, we need to immerse students in these concepts and vocabulary to help them learn the science information. One of the ways I immerse students in the science unit is to incorporate the unit materials across our day. I add the unit materials to our centers, task boxes, word wall, reading centers, etc.
Here are some of the hands on tasks we do in our science units:
Immersing students in the unit (while still meeting other academic and speech goals) will positively reflect in the assessments… which are included in every unit! ?