Overall, I had a lot of fun creating my “Kinderlearning” Micro-Unit plan and I learned a lot about interdisciplinary Environmental Education. Our entire unit aimed to examine the observable characteristics of all living things and to engage our students with nature, explore the characteristics of trees, plants and other life forms, elaborate on previous knowledge of nature and the environment, and evaluate all new learning made by the students. I created an inquiry math lesson within the greater Science/Environmental Education unit that focused on exploring and examining characteristics of trees by talking about the importance of leaves on trees, comparing shapes, sizes, and heights of trees or leaves, and creating patterns with the leaves. I found that my lesson was connected with the first lesson (English) because the students would embark on a nature walk to collect leaves and then create a craft with the leaves by numbering them and ordering them by their size. Since the nature walk is referenced in every other lesson after my math lesson, I was able to learn that it is possible to make a unit plan with lessons that are all linked and interdisciplinary. I learned that even for a Kindergarten class you can create an interdisciplinary unit plan.
By creating my math lesson with connections to Science, I also realized that it is possible to connect subjects of learning together so that students do not get board of learning solely one subject at a time. I find it to be more exciting to learn and even teach lessons that are connected to other subjects, like Math, Science, Social Studies, Arts Educations and English. This reminds me of David Orr’s quote: “All education is environmental education”. This quote makes me think that anything can be Environmental Education if you are willing to make it that way. Teachers need to be aware that anything can be Environmental Education if you plan for it. We as teachers can connect all of our lessons and make them interdisciplinary, just like we did for our Micro-Unit assignment if we so choose. As a future educator, I plan to make a conscious effort to make interdisciplinary environmental lessons and making sure my students engage, explore, explain, and elaborate in the lessons being taught before they are evaluated.
Here is my visual for this week’s Blog. It’s a visual of my “Kinderlearning” Unit Plan and it shows how the lessons are all connected.