Karen Festa- Special Education Teacher
Lesson: Temperature (two days)
Grade level: Kindergarten

What is the Temperature Outside?
Introduction:
Read Caps, Hats, Socks, and Mittens by Louis Borden. Discuss how we have been talking a lot about summer and how warm it is getting. Show students the outdoor thermometer and tell them that we will be keeping track of how warm it is with this thermometer. Describe how the thermometer tells us the temperature, whether it is hot or cold. Hang the thermometer outside and tell them that we will check it later to see the temperature.
Goals:
The science unit at the kindergarten level is an introduction to weather. The emphasis in kindergarten will be on observation and description of daily weather changes and patterns. How people are affected by the weather and the identification types of weather and the local weather patterns will be the main focus. The goal of this lesson is an introduction to what a thermometer is and what it does. We will also incorporate seasons, and graphing. More specifically, the students will be allowed to see how a range of temperatures fit into each of the seasons.
Pre-Activities:
Talk about what type of clothing you wear when it is hot and when it is cold. What does the weather look and feel like when it is hot or cold? What is a thermometer? Have you ever seen one? What does it measure?
Lesson:
Show them the teaching thermometer and talk about what the thermometer looks like when it is warm and when it is cold. Explain that they are going to make their own thermometer to practice reading a thermometer. Model the process for the class using the Scholastic thermometer template http://teacher.scholastic.com/LessonPlans/thermometer.pdf
Send the students to the tables to start working on their own thermometers. When the students are finished, collect the thermometers and bring them back to the rug. Show them the thermometer that you hung outside and ask them what "color" it is today (what sticker does the red line touch?). Then record the temperature by putting that color sticker on the monthly “temperature graph” posted in the classroom.
Red= 100-80 F Green= 59-50 F
Orange= 79-70 F Purple= 49-40 F
Yellow=69-60 F Blue= 39-0 F
Add "Temperature Person" to your daily jobs and have a student check the temperature and put the colored sticker on the temperature graph. I would change the graph with each new month and hang the graphs around the room to show how to temperature has changed during the year. Hang the name of the month above each strip (January is mostly blue and green! But look at June! Now we are all orange and red!).
Interactive Science Activity (Day 2):
Sit the students at the rug and pass out their thermometers. Have them practice using them by asking them to show you what hot and cold look like. Then have them turn to a partner and practice with each other. Read Caps, Hats, Socks and Mittens by Louis Borden. As you read have the students show on their thermometers what kind of temperature you are describing.
Extension:
Encourage your students to look at the weather websites at home and watch the weather on the news. Ask them to color in a map of the world with the different temperatures to show their online research. Encourage them to visit the website www.weather.com or create a Google news alert for the temperature each day in a family member’s region.
Modifications:
For students who have difficulty reading the thermometer, use the same colored sticker code we are using for the classroom temperature graph and have the students put the sticker on their individual thermometer next to the numbers that pertain to the specific color. Place a “sunny” clip art picture where the thermometer is warm and a “snowy” clip art picture where the thermometer reads cold.
Assessments:
As your students are responding to the book with their thermometers, observe to see who is confident with the idea and who is not. If you do not think that you are getting a good idea from observation alone, you could have them do a simple project of illustrating a paper folded in half with a warm thermometer on one side and a cold thermometer on the other side.
· Can the student identify the accurate temperature using their thermometer?
· Is the student able to identify characteristics of a thermometer (red line, numbers and how they depict hot/cold)
· Are the students able to accurately identify the appropriate temperature to represent “hot” and “cold”
· Can the students tell which “color” to graph using a thermometer?