- List four objects that fly
- Write using invented spelling
- Follow directions
- Describe the role of wind and air in flight
- Brown paper bags (for kites)
- Paint, paint brushes, paper plates, cups of water
- Paper towels for clean up
- Paper for the students to make a "Flight Book"
- Copies of the Observation Sheet printable
- Up, Up and Away!: The Science of Flight by Barbara Taylor
- Ben Franklin and His First Kite by Stephen Krensky
- Cut bottoms out of paper bags
- Prepare paint plates and clean-up materials
- Cut streamer strips
- Make booklets for the students to draw pictures of things that can fly with space to write below the picture. I like to provide about four spaces for pictures per student "Flight Book"
- Make one copy of the Observation Sheet printable per student
- Make a kite as a model
Step 1: Begin by reflecting on the observations from lesson one. You might even want to reference the chart that the class made together. Wind can cause a ball to roll, a book to open, water to move, etc. Use this as a bridge to discuss that wind also makes things fly!
Step 2: Show the students Up, Up and Away!: The Science of Flight by Barbara Taylor. Focus on showing the students the variety of things that fly rather than ‘reading' the book word for word. Begin a list on chart paper of things that fly. Use the pattern "A __________ can fly." Explain to the students that they will be making their own books of flight and they will need the words ‘can' and ‘fly'. Add those words to the word wall.
Step 3: Send the students to their tables to write in their "Flight Books" three things that fly. Encourage them to use the pattern "A ________ can fly." You can definitely adjust this to meet the needs of your students. Some might need to write more by explaining how the object flies. Others might just need to write one word of the thing that flies.
Step 4: As the students are writing, try to find students that thought of something new that flies that is not on the list already. When the students clean up and go back to the rug, highlight the new ideas and add them to the class list.
Step 1: Begin by going through the list of things that can fly that you started the previous day. Then show the students the book Ben Franklin and His First Kite by Stephen Krensky. While reading this, focus on how kites fly rather than the history of Ben Franklin. The purpose of this lesson is learning about the relationship of air and wind to flight.
Step 2: Show the students the pre-made kite. Explain that they will be painting something that can fly on each side of their kite.
Step 3: Send the students to their seats to paint the bottomless brown paper bags, which will be turned into kites.
Some tips to avoid mess and confusion:
- Provide smocks for the students (an old button-down shirt with the collar cut off and the sleeves cut short works great).
- Have them stand behind their chairs rather than sit down.
- Give each student their own paintbrush.
- Two or three kids share two paper plates of paint, a cup of water, and a sponge. (You may have kids that need their own small paint palettes because they do not have the motor control to keep the paints from mixing too much.)
- Before sending them to the tables I model at the rug exactly how they will use the paints. (Their brush will go from paint to paper to water to sponge to paint. I will also model skipping some steps: "So I get some red paint and then I want some yellow, so I will put my brush...." [moving toward the yellow paint] The kids usually play along by saying "No!! Wash it off first!")
- When it is time to send them to the tables (which are ready with paint, water, and sponges), I send them a few at a time to their chair (each chair has a smock on it, and a paper and paintbrush in front of it) and the rest of us watch "amazed" as they get on their smock and stand behind their chair. Once everyone is ready, we begin.
At this point, there were so many directions given, I remind them that we are painting things that fly.
Step 4: While they are painting I walk around and see who is able to follow directions (there were a lot of them!). If there is someone who is not following directions because of behavior, I do not hesitate to set them aside so they can "watch" the other kids paint. This way they might know how to do it. If they are struggling because they did not understand, or are having a hard time remembering the directions, I remind them of things, or buddy them up with someone to help.
- I have a drying rack in the room that the students put their paintings on.
- They put their smocks in bins I have out to receive them.
- I give specific directions to various students to help in the clean-up. Sometimes it helps to be as specific as possible (Kevin, can you push in ten chairs? Soriah, can you get eight paintbrushes?)
Before teaching this lesson, punch a hole at the bottom of the kites and tie a piece of yarn through the hole.
Step 1:Today the students will finish their kites and fly them. Go over what makes kites fly, learned from the book read the day before.
Step 2: Have the students go to the tables to attach streamers to their kites with a little glue.
Step 3: Take the students outside to fly their kites! As they are flying them, emphasize the air and wind that is holding their kite up in the air.
Step 1: Discuss yesterday's kite flying fun. Ask the students about their observations.
Step 2: Send the students to the tables to complete their Observation Sheet printable. On this sheet they are recording what they observed from the previous day. Look for writing about wind and air to assess their understanding of flight.
Step 3: Once at the rug again, share the work of students who understood basic principles of flight.
Supporting All Learners
In any writing assignment, you will need to challenge some while making writing accessible to others. I make different sheets for different sets of students. The students who are able to write more use paper with more lines and less drawing space, while the students who are not able to write receive a paper with more room for drawing and less lines. Sometimes I ask the students to choose the paper that is "just right" for them.
The class could also make paper airplanes and compare how they fly in contrast to the kites.
Students could make another kind of kite at home and compare their two kites. They might time how long each will stay in the air. They could also bring kites in from home and share them with the class.
- The students will write a Flight Book.
- The students will make and fly kites.
- The students will paint in an organized way.
- The students will write about their observations of flight.
- Were my students following directions? Do I need to be clearer about how I give directions?
- What went well?
- What would I do differently next time?
- Are my students able to follow directions?
- Are my students able to list things that fly?
- Are my students able to explain the role of wind and air in flight?
- Are my students able to use the word wall?