Year 3 Science Guided Journey

Description of Guided Journey

This year of science continues to build on previously learned topics, covering specific types of animals, habitats, energy, plants and machines in depth. Children explore various animals of the desert and sea, noting the high level of diversity that exists in the plant and animal kingdoms. Children develop knowledge of the ways an animal's characteristics help it survive in its environment. This year also provides opportunity to discover more ways in which animals can help people, as children get an eye-opening look at animal helpers.

Children continue to explore animal life cycles this year, venturing into the life of a star as well. In this year of science, children also learn that Earth's surface is not a constant. They will see how weather and erosion change Earth's surface little by little. Energy and technology are covered this year in a manner that allows children to relate topics to everyday life. Children continue to learn about important people in science and explore science careers this year. Hands-on projects, activities, and experiments are used throughout the year, helping to reinforce the knowledge children gain from written materials. There is also ample opportunity for children to observe science in the world around them.

Key Concepts to Keep in Mind

This guided journey emphasizes several key themes. To help you understand the purpose and important points of teaching each one, they are described here:

  • Animals: An animal's appearance, physical makeup, sleep patterns, and food/hunting choices are typically suited to its environment. Even within a specific category or type of environment, different animals have widely varied characteristics and behaviors. Some animals are helpful to people in ways that go beyond transportation, food, and clothing. Animal helpers are carefully trained to help human beings struggling with certain conditions, and some are even trained to rescue people from life-threatening situations.
  • The Ever-Changing Earth: Earth's surface is constantly changing. Earthquakes, volcanoes, and glaciers all work to change the surface of our planet. Erosion is at work on a continuous basis, altering it even more.
  • Energy and Machines: Motion is a type of energy. Pushing, pulling, walking, and running are examples of motion. We apply the energy of motion in everyday life to make things happen and create change. Many of the things we use on a daily basis provide examples of motion at work. We employ a wide variety of machines and technological advances to harness the energy of motion and other types of energy, using them to accomplish various tasks.
  • Technology: Various types of instruments are used to collect and analyze scientific data. Satellites are used not only for monitoring space, but also for allowing us to do and understand some of the things we take for granted. Technological advances allow us to overcome gravity and make airplanes fly.
  • Cycles in nature: Life cycles maintain a predictable pattern: birth, growth, reproduction, and death.
  • Plants: There are many unique types of plants that grow in the most surprising places. For example, some plants grow in the desert or in the ocean. Plants provide food and shelter for animals and humans. In fact, some flowers are more than merely pretty; they're actually edible.
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