Lesson Plan Template: General Lesson Plan
Learning Objectives: What should students know and be able to do as a result of this lesson?
- Distinguish between the stratosphere and the troposphere in relation to ozone formation in the atmosphere.
- Discuss both the positive and negative impact of ozone on life on Earth.
- Identify human impact on ozone and the ozone layer.
- Cite specific and relevant text evidence to support analysis of the text.
- Use vocabulary strategies to define academic and domain-specific words in the text.
- Construct a written response that clearly establishes the main point(s), contains relevant textual evidence to support the main point, utilizes transitions to maintain flow, effectively uses domain-specific vocabulary, and provides an appropriate conclusion.
Prior Knowledge: What prior knowledge should students have for this lesson?
In regards to science:
- Knowledge of the layers of the atmosphere and the importance of each
- Knowledge of the function of the ozone layer and the reactions that are involved in its formation
- The relationship between ozone and the ozone layer and the biosphere
- A general knowledge of the causes of air pollution
- Basic knowledge of science vocabulary such as atom, UV-radiation, ozone, chemicals
In regards to literacy skills:
- Students should have prior experience utilizing various vocabulary strategies to determine the meaning of unknown words in a text. For this lesson, prior experience in using context clues to determine the meaning of words in a text would be beneficial, as well as use of dictionary skills.
- Students should be aware of text features that can help them locate and learn information when reading a text. The text features in Allen's "Chemistry in the Sunlight" article include: title, graphs, charts, a map, photographs, and captions.
- Students should be able to respond to a writing prompt in a clear, organized manner that includes relevant and specific textual evidence.
Guiding Questions: What are the guiding questions for this lesson?
While students are reading and answering questions about the article, please use the questions below to help guide students' thinking:
1. How does the presence of ozone found in the troposphere affect us compared to the ozone found in the stratosphere?
The troposphere is considered to be the lower atmosphere and it is the portion of the atmosphere where we live and breathe. The ozone found in this layer is considered to be a pollutant and is toxic to living organisms. The stratosphere is considered to be the upper atmosphere and it includes the ozone layer which absorbs and protects us from deadly ultraviolet radiation.
2. What key function does the ozone layer provide that benefits life on Earth?
Ozone in the stratosphere is necessary because it protects life from harmful ultraviolet radiation from the sun. Living organisms, from plants to humans, would be affected because of the damage the UV rays would cause.
3.What are some human causes of the increased level of ozone in the troposphere?
The troposphere contains the air we breathe but unfortunately, as the human population is increasing, so is the consumption of fossil fuels. The increased use of fossil fuels has caused an increase in the production of by-products that can lead to an increase in ozone formation. The increased amount of nitrogen oxides in the atmosphere also leads to an increase in the levels of ozone.
Misconceptions: Students often think that fossil fuel consumption is the only process that increases gases into the atmosphere. They overlook things such as biomass burning which is intentional burning of vegetation to make room for new crops. There are natural processes that also emit VOC's into the atmosphere.
Teaching Phase: How will the teacher present the concept or skill to students?
1. Begin the lesson by posing a general question to the class: "What are the various layers of the atmosphere?"
Some students may be aware of the names of the various layers of the atmosphere. This would be a good place to build that background knowledge. There are five layers to the Earth's atmosphere:
- The troposphere is the first layer above the surface and contains half of the Earth's atmosphere. Weather occurs in this layer.
- Many jet aircraft fly in the stratosphere because it is very stable. Also, the ozone layer absorbs harmful rays from the Sun.
- Meteors or rock fragments burn up in the mesosphere.
- The thermosphere is a layer with auroras. It is also where the space shuttle orbits.
- The atmosphere merges into space in the extremely thin exosphere. This is the upper limit of our atmosphere.
The teacher may decide to just put an emphasis on the troposphere and the stratosphere.
2. The teacher can then ask, "What is ozone?"
Students most likely are familiar with the ozone layer so answers will probably reference the hole in the ozone, why ozone is important, etc. If they have had chemistry, they are probably aware of the molecular formula and have a general idea of it's formation.
3. Next pose the question, "Is ozone a positive or a negative force on the environment?"
Students will probably agree that ozone is a positive force on the environment. You may probe students' knowledge of ozone by asking them why they believe it to be a positive force. Most students will be able to answer that the ozone layer protects us from the Sun's rays by absorbing most of the ultraviolet radiation. There is a good chance that they do not realize ozone is also considered a pollutant in the troposphere.
4. Next, ask students, "Can human activities negatively impact our atmosphere?"
Many students will probably agree that human activities can negatively impact our atmosphere. You may ask students to cite some examples. Some answers may include the burning of fossil fuels, gas car emissions, large amount of waste disposals, and/or industrial fumes.
5. End the discussion by informing students that the "Chemistry in Sunlight" article will be looking at ozone formation based on the location in the atmosphere and how ozone affects living organisms This article will also highlight the impact certain human activities have on our atmosphere.
Guided Practice: What activities or exercises will the students complete with teacher guidance?
1. Provide each student with a copy of the article "Chemistry in the Sunlight." For class discussions that will follow, it might be helpful to have students number each paragraph.
2. Provide each student with a note-taking guide.
3. Before students begin reading, direct them to pay attention to the text features of the article to help them learn and locate information:
- Title: Chemistry in the Sunlight
- Photographs with captions underneath
- Graphs, maps, charts with captions underneath
4. Have students fill out the note-taking guide as they read the text. This can be done individually, in pairs, or in a small group. The teacher should monitor students as they work and provide support and guidance as needed.
- Note: Based on the needs and skills of the students, teachers can decrease the number of academic or domain-specific vocabulary students will define on the note-taking guide.
For academic vocabulary, students will likely be able to use a variety of vocabulary strategies to define the meaning of the words. For domain-specific (in other words, subject-specific) vocabulary, students will typically need to draw on prior knowledge and use a dictionary to define the words.
5. If students struggle with determining the meaning of the selected vocabulary, teachers might use the following tips to help them:
- Wavelength (paragraph 1): shortest distance between equivalent points on a wave. The teacher may remind students that wavelengths will vary based on how close the peaks on the wave are to each other. The closer the peaks are the shorter the distance, therefore shorter wavelengths. Shorter wavelengths mean more harm to us.
- Nanometer (paragraph 1): unit of distance. It is equivalent to 10-9m. The teacher may tell students that these are extremely small distances.
- Molecular (paragraph 1): when two or more atoms are bonded. Encourage students to use context clues. In this case, the author clearly states what molecular oxygen means in parentheses.
- Atomic (paragraph 1): smallest particle of an element. Encourage students to use context clues. In this paragraph, the author puts in parentheses the definition (individual atoms).
- Ozone (paragraph 1): three oxygen atoms are bonded. Encourage students to use context clues. The author states the definition of the term before writing the word.
- Stratosphere (paragraph 2): upper atmosphere. Encourage students to use context clues. The explanation is included in the sentence containing the word.
- Troposphere (paragraph 2): lower atmosphere. Encourage students to use context clues. The explanation is included in the sentence containing the word.
- Oxidation (paragraph 2): donating oxygen atoms. Encourage students to use context clues. The explanation is included in the sentence containing the word.
- Photosynthesis (paragraph 2): the process plants use to change carbon dioxide and water into sugar using sunlight. Encourage students to use a dictionary to determine the meaning of that word.
- Volatile (paragraph 3): evaporating rapidly. Encourage students to use a dictionary. Dictionary.com lists 6 different meanings of this word. Have students "plug" these meanings back into a few places in the text where the word is used in order to determine which meaning is the correct one. Students should select meaning one: Evaporating rapidly.
- Fossil fuel (paragraph 4): any combustible organic material, as oil, coal, or natural gas, derived from the remains of former life. Encourage students to use a dictionary or dictionary.com for a definition.
- By-product (paragraph 4): a secondary or incidental product, as in a process of manufacture. Encourage students to use a dictionary. Dictionary.com lists 6 different meanings of this word. Have students "plug" these meanings back into a few places in the text where the word is used in order to determine which meaning is the correct one. Students should select meaning one.
- Catalyze (paragraph 5): refer to the noun—catalysis. Encourage students to use a dictionary and to look at the work catalysis. Dictionary.com lists 6 different meanings of this word. Have students "plug" these meanings back into a few places in the text where the word is used in order to determine which meaning is the correct one. Students should select meaning one: the causing or accelerating of a chemical change by the addition of a catalyst.
- Elusive (paragraph 6): failing to allow for. Encourage students to use a dictionary or dictionary.com for a definition.
- Hydrocarbons (paragraph 6): any of a class of compounds containing only hydrogen and carbon. Encourage students to use context clues and also the prefix "hydro," which in this case, it means "hydrogen." Have students think about the meaning of the carbon, which is an element in the periodic table. Putting these together, students might determine the word means composed of hydrogen and carbon atoms.
- Biomass (paragraph 9): organic matter, especially plant matter which can be converted to fuel and is therefore regarded as a potential energy source. Encourage students to use a dictionary. Dictionary.com lists 2 different meanings of this word. Have students "plug" these meanings back into a few places in the text where the word is used in order to determine which meaning is the correct one. Students should select meaning two.
How will you check for student understanding? (Formative Assessment):
1. Teachers can check students' understanding by collecting students' completed note-taking guide, checking their work, providing written feedback, and possibly a grade. Or, teachers can have students share out their responses and the teacher can provide verbal corrective feedback, allowing students to make corrections to their work during the discussion.
2. Teachers can use this sample answer key to help them assess students' answers.
Independent Practice: What activities or exercises will students complete to reinforce the concepts and skills developed in the lesson?
Provide each student with a copy of the text-dependent questions to complete. Students should be reminded to continually refer back to the text and to use relevant and specific evidence from the text to support their answers.
Formative Assessment (How will teachers check for understanding?):
1. Teachers can check students' understanding by collecting students' answers to the text-dependent questions, checking their work, providing written feedback, and maybe grading the assignment. Or, teachers can have students share out their responses and the teacher can provide verbal corrective feedback, allowing students to make corrections to their work during the discussion.
2. Teachers can use this sample answer key to help them assess students' answers.
Common errors/misconceptions to anticipate and how to respond: Please see the text-dependent questions sample answer key.
Closure: How will the teacher assist students in organizing the knowledge gained in the lesson?
1. Before students complete the writing prompt, be sure to review responses to the text-dependent questions as a class, including covering the misconceptions and key points described in the sample answer key.
2. After students' written responses have been graded and returned with feedback, teachers might wish to use the provided sample response with the class. Students who are struggling writers can benefit greatly from seeing a well-organized, detailed written response. The teacher could show the sample to students and have them identify where specific textual evidence was used effectively in the response.
- Teachers might want students to use the rubric to provide a score for the sample written response and have them justify the score they gave, possibly providing revision suggestions for any categories they scored lower than a 3 or 4.
1. Students will individually respond to the writing prompt. They should be directed to respond with a well-organized, multi-paragraph response. They can refer back to the text as they construct their response.
2. Provide students with a copy of the rubric (or teachers can create their own rubric) and go over the rubric with them so they will know how their written response will be assessed.
3. Go over the writing prompt with students and make sure students understand what the prompt is asking them to address.
The prompt: Use text evidence to support the following statement: Ozone is an essential tool to the survival of all living organisms, yet it can also be a destructive force for the same organisms.
4. Teachers will use the rubric (or one they have created) to assess students' written responses.
Specific suggestions for conducting the Formative Assessment can be found in the Guided Practice and Independent Practice phases of the lesson.
Feedback to Students
Specific suggestions for providing Feedback to Students can be found in the Independent Practice phase of the lesson where it says, "Common errors/misconceptions to anticipate and how to respond."