Language Arts Reading as a Springboard to Science Education
Language Arts Reading as a Springboard to Science Education Christopher Tozier & Reed Bowman
Christopher Tozier2011 Florida Individual Artist FellowshipPublished in The Florida Entomologistand over forty poetry journalsOlivia Brophie and the Pearl of Tageluspublished in March 2012, winner ofthe 2012 Florida Publishers Assoc Silver Medal
Olivia Brophie and the Pearl of TagelusOlivia is a 10 year old girl from Wisconsinwho moves to the Florida scrub.Joined by her little brother Gnatand eco-nerdy friend DougShe discovers an ancient city in theFloridan Aquifer and the Pearl, a devicethat controls the laws of the universe
Reed Bowman, Ph.DResearch Program DirectorAvian EcologyArchbold Biological Station
Literature should excite and engage: books are writtento tell a story, not to teach a lesson • Children are automatically interested in this approach. • This is not ‚settling‛ for a fun book because students may not want to read textbooks. • Lessons are extracted from the story by analysis and teaching. • Story provides context for the science lessons; plot and characters enter the science classroom. • Science lessons illuminate our understanding of the story. • Use that excitement and engagement to create depth in another classroom. However…this approach requires the right book
So, what is the right book? • Books written for the mass market, not for the classroom. • Entertainment is the primary goal. • Age appropriate for the grade. ATOS book level. • Literary aspects strong enough for LA curriculum. • Science is featured prominently in the plot. • Dark Life by Kat Falls could be used to teach Oceanography.
The Archbold / Olivia Brophie Curriculum: • Includes both Science and Language Arts Common Core and Sunshine State Standards. • Includes field study. • Biology, geology, botany, and general science concepts. • Vocabulary, character development, literary devices, quizzes and writing assignments.
Chapter 17 Remembering Junonia Olivia’s nemesis, Miss Rinkle who has been masquerading as the summer school teacher, confronts her in an attempt to acquire the Pearl. Miss Rinkle describes ancient Florida and how the city of Junonia came to be.
‚Long ago, Olivia, Florida was not the place thatyou see today. The oceans were much higher and Floridaitself was nothing much beyond a long beach of sandydunes extending south from Georgia. The land you arestanding on right now, the scrub, Lyonia itself, was one ofthose dunes. Oh, the air was so clear and clean back then!The oceans were filled with the most amazing jellyfish thesize of cars. At night, they would glow out there in the sealike enormous pulsing moons,‛ Miss Rinkle said, staringoff into the distance. ‚There were horrible monsters outthere too. Sharks the size of houses. Crocodiles biggerthan your school bus. Giant, bloodthirsty dire wolvesravaged the dunes hunting for anything they could catch.So the Junonians built their city deep underneath thedunes where they would be safe.
Literary Analysis (LA.7.2.1)LA.220.127.116.11 Rising Conflict: Olivia’s character finally accepts her responsibilitywhen faced with escalating conflict.LA.18.104.22.168 How does Miss Rinkle try to gain Olivia’s empathy? How does she usepersuasion? What does she really want?LA.22.214.171.124 Development of Theme: How are discovery and ‚new sight‛expanded? Miss Rinkle’s eyes change color. New perspective.LA.126.96.36.199 Use of Allusions: Edison and TeslaLA.188.8.131.52 Themes reflecting values in a Historical Context: Environmentalism,pollution of sinkholes
Persuasive Writing Applications (LA.7.6.3) Pretend you are Miss Rinkle and you want to convince Olivia to give you the Pearl. Write a persuasive argument using at least three of the following persuasive techniques: detailed evidence, hyperbole, emotional appeal, word choice, repetition, appeal to authority, or celebrity endorsement.
Extending the literary to the scientificJunonians moved underground to escape ‚horriblemonsters‛ SC.4.N.2.1: science focuses on the natural world: Thus what could be‚natural‛ equivalent be of the Junonians? Why do Gopher Tortoises (Gopherus polyphemus) build and live in burrows? • To escape predators • To control temperature But could other organisms get these benefits by using gopher tortoise burrows? BIG IDEA #17: THE INTERDEPENDENCE OF ORGANISMS
Extending the literary to the scientificSC.7.L.17.2Compare and contrast the relationships among organisms such asmutualism, predation, parasitism, competition, and commensalism Gopher Frogs use the burrows of tortoises and also gain protection from predators and heat • Do tortoises gain anything? What type of relationship is this? Many dozens of species share gopher tortoise burrows and illustrate all of the ecological relationships among interacting species
Extending the literary to the scientificSC.7.L.17.2Compare and contrast the relationships among organisms such asmutualism, predation, parasitism, competition, and commensalismLike the Crogan Horses that lived in Junonia and the fungi and mossesfarmed by the Junonians, the organisms that share gopher tortoise burrowshave unique relationships to their benefactors and among themselves Dung beetles may eat or bury gopher tortoises scat around the burrow and this, in turn, may reduce the load of intestinal parasites carried by the tortoise MUTUALISM
Extending the literary to the scientificSC.7.L.17.2Compare and contrast the relationships among organisms such asmutualism, predation, parasitism, competition, and commensalismLike the Crogan Horses that lived in Junonia and the fungi and mossesfarmed by the Junonians, the organisms that share gopher tortoise burrowshave unique relationships to their benefactors and among themselves Rattlesnakes may use burrows to escape heat but may occasionally prey on other burrow occupants PREDATION
Discovering Florida Scrub CurriculumUsing the scrub to address concept in biology • Developed at Archbold Biological Station for grades 3-5 • Written by staff educators with help from staff scientists • Adaptations of the plants and animals to life in the sand • Nancy Deyrup and Charlotte Wilson
Discovering Florida Scrub CurriculumUsing Olivia Brophie and scrub to addressconcepts in biologyLife in the sand • Olivia observes perfect holes in the sand, but doesn’t know what they are Wolf Spider
Discovering Florida Scrub CurriculumUsing Olivia Brophie and scrub to addressconcepts in biologyLife in the sand • Olivia observes perfect holes in the sand, but doesn’t know what they are • What are they? How can we find out? SCIENTIFIC INQUIRY • Why would animals live under the sand? • Adaptations for living in the sand. • Why did the Junonians build their city underground? • How do predators impact the behaviors of prey?
Additional Opportunities in Olivia BrophieOlivia follows a bear and learns about their secret highways • Allow them to move long distances in fragmented habitats • Connects them to patches with resources • Critical to their persistence Providing habitat corridors in our increasingly fragmented Florida landscape is a key concept in conservation and ecology
The Floridan Aquifer • Springs • Limestone / Caves • Fossils • Scrubs as recharge lands • Rising and sinking sea levels
Remember…the science enters into the literary curriculum too • Learning about gopher tortoises helps explain character motivations. • By developing the Language Arts plan in parallel with the Science plan, levels of understanding can be ‘timed.’ • Students get excited about the fun story. • Students learn a lesson in science class. • The science lesson is then applied to the next chapter. Language Arts Science
The Archbold / Olivia Brophie Curriculum: Next Steps • Currently in development with teachers from around the state. • Still looking for teachers / partners to participate. • Need expertise in CCS, Science, and Language Arts curriculum. firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com