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Main Curriculum Tie:
Background For Teachers:
In some ways, ants and people are alike. Both ants and people take care of their young, live together, have different jobs, and depend on each other. Ants have all the senses that humans have but use different body parts to achieve the same goals. Ants don't have ears; instead they use their legs and antennae to feel vibrations. They use antennae to hear, smell, and touch things. They talk or communicate by tapping their antennae together. Ants have an exoskeleton (outer covering), but have sensory structures all over their body so they know when something is touching them. Ants don't have a tongue, but they have finger like pulps around their mouths that have the ability to taste.
Unlike humans, ants have two stomachs; the second stomach is filled and used to feed other ants. Ants have two types of eyes; one set has many lenses, while the other set of eyes called “simple eyes”, allows them to judge light levels in the environment. Ants don't chew their food; instead they use their powerful jaws to squeeze the juices out of their prey and also to defend themselves. Each ant colony has their own scent and can recognize an intruder. The soldier ants (larger ants) defend those who try to invade. They also use this scent to track food that their sisters have found.
An ant’s reproduction goes like this: The queen fertilizes the eggs
creating all females. Ants that are fed more in the larva stage are called
soldier ants. Once a year, the queen creates a male by not fertilizing
that egg and fertilizes other eggs to create females, one which will
become a princess. The eggs hatch within eight to 10 weeks. At this
time, the male ant and Princess ant, both having wings, fly away and
mate during flight. (Mating happens around the end of June until early
August and the female can mate with more than one male.) After
mating, the princess ant looses her wings, becoming a queen and
begins her own nest or colony. Male ants are created only as needed
for reproductive purposes and die shortly after mating.
Intended Learning Outcomes:
1. Use science process and thinking skills.
5. Connect mathematical ideas within mathematics, to other disciplines, and to everyday experiences.
Bransford, J.D., Brown, A.L. & Cocking, R.R, (Eds.) (1999). How People Learn; Mind, Experience, and School. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.
The authors explored the methodologies and barriers in motivating young learners to enjoy and participate in classroom science research and learning. They concluded that a standard-based curriculum provides information on what students should learn concluding that teachers make the curriculum accessible to students through their choice of instructional materials, lessons, homework, and types of assessment.
Louckes, S.H., Hewson, P.W., Love, N., & Stiles, K. (Eds.) (1998). Designing Professional Development for Teachers of Science and Mathematics. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.
In this study the authors identified three components of effective professional development that nurture continuous improvement: context, process and content. Professional development requires careful planning with the needs of teachers being an integral part of the process.
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