1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded education professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

'introduction to topic' four elements - the four elements

Discussion in 'Secondary' started by lemonthelime, Feb 13, 2012.

  1. I have been asked to devise a 100 minute session for approx 70 yr 8 students, to introduce this half term's topic: earth wind fire water.
    It can be any focus, and draw on arts, humanities and technology.
    I am thinking along the lines of natural disasters but am stuggling to think of actual activities for them to do.
    Any suggestions please?
  2. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    What about the other hundred elements?
  3. Please don't teach them that there are four elements please. As a science teacher I have to spend longer unfolding these misconceptions!
  4. And none of those is actually an element. Even as an English teacher I can see the many flaws here.
  5. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    This seems a little babyish for year 8! By year 8 they should have seen a periodic table and know that there are many elements, name about a dozen off the top of their heads with symbols. Segregate them into metals and non-metals.

    What subject are you teaching?
  6. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    Wind and water lend themselves to renewable energy.

    Earth lends itself either to growing plants or digging for minerals.

    Fire could be non-renewable energy sources
  7. Henriettawasp

    Henriettawasp New commenter

    Mollify the scientists among us and don't call them 'elements' . But apart from that - the natural disaster approach looks a good one to take. You will find plenty of resources from geography (ask your colleagues) - both from the human impact and physical geography side. You will be able to download plenty of videos (e.g. BBC learning zone clips) - and of course historical accounts of floods, earthquakes and volcanoes (going back as far as Pliny the younger on Vesuvius). For art you could look at how volcanic ash in the atmosphere inspired certain landscape artists (e.g. Turner).
  8. Your comments are all well and good but please don't shoot me down in flames for asking for help on this.

    Its not my choice of topic, I've just been asked to lead a session on it before they kids then explore it further in individual arts, humanities and technology subjects. i have no choice in the topic, i just need to make the best of it hence asking for help.
  9. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    So who picked the topic and why are you doing such babyish work with secondary kids?
  10. Henriettawasp

    Henriettawasp New commenter

    Sorry. I thought I <u>was</u> being helpful. [​IMG]
  11. You were ...sorry :) and thank you for your help. My comment was aimed at those people that were criticising the topic I have been given rather than offering helpful suggestions.

    I'm not prepared to go into detail about who has set this topic etc as I dont feel it is relevant to my original post, and I really dont want to be getting into a debate about it.

  12. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    This is year 8 (or do you mean 8 year olds)? So if you teach in topics you maust have a plan as to what parts of a 'normal' curriculu this topic will cover. So let's say in geography you want to cover weather or rocks, or volcanoes. In Maths you may wish to cover (wind)speed, volume, in science you may wish to cover growing plants or dissolving or something. You may have a title for a topic but your school (or the person who co-ordinates the topic) should have some idea of the aims and objectives of doing it.
  13. Blazer - yes we do have plans for each subject. Basically for each topic there is an introductory lesson where they do some kind of activity to explore the topic then they spend the next 5 weeks in their specific subjects withsubject specialist teachers exploring the topis e.g in DT they're lokking at using wind as an energy source and making something that is wind powered, geography are exploring hawaii in terms of climate, volcanoes etc, music are exploring music that represents earth wind fire etc and then composing music to accompany a natural disaster documentary. The topic only applies to arts, humanities and techonlogy - core subjects follow a completely different style of curriculum.
    The session I'm doing is just the introductory bit for the whole unit that isnt necessarily specific to any of the subjects. I know what all the other subjects are doing which is why Im trying to avoid theirlearning activities because other wise the kids will end up doing stuff twice.
    In the past for the introductory session we have had guest speakers, or other staff have devised a session with an activitiy relevant to the topic. It just happens that this time round its fallen on me to plan the session.
    At the moment I'm still thinking about doing something based on natural disasters e.g. japanese tsunami, hurricane Katrina and so on. Its the actual activity and the format of it that I'm stuck with. We wont have access to computers, only a whiteboard and projector with speakers.
  14. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

  15. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

  16. If you do a good job on this your students will be better informed than some teachers. Start by clarifying what these elements are all about - NOT modern scientific elements or the periodic table. Start by looking up Wikipedia for CLASSICAL ELEMENTS. These four 'elements' or versions of them have been the basis of philosophies and belief systems world wide.
    At some point your students may want to get involved in art in this connection - looking up 'images' on Google for FOUR ELEMENTS
  17. Incidentally, the Chinese version postulates the existence of five elements See

    One group could study this and investigate (Google) 'feng shui house layout' then do an architectural project on what a feng shui house, school, office or classroom would look like
  18. In some mythologies, dragons are said to represent the four elements of fire earth, air and water. The zoroastrians also had a festival of the elements which is still celebrated in parts of modern Iran and neighbouring countries, which might be interesting.

Share This Page