In this eight-week module, students explore animal defense mechanisms. They build proficiency in writing an informative piece, examining the defense mechanisms of one specific animal about which they build expertise. Students also build proficiency in writing a narrative piece about this animal. In Unit 1, they build background knowledge on general animal defenses through close readings of several informational texts. Students read closely to practice drawing inferences as they begin their research and use a research notebook to make observations and synthesize information. Students will continue to use the research notebook, using the millipede as a whole class model. They begin to research an expert group animal in preparation to write about this animal in Units 2 and 3, again using the research notebook. In Unit 2, students continue to build expertise about their animal and its defense mechanisms, writing the first part of the final performance task—an informative piece describing their animal͛s physical characteristics, habitat, predators, and defense mechanisms. With their new knowledge about animal defenses from Unit 1, students read informational texts closely, using the same research notebook to synthesize information about their animal. In Unit 3, students apply their research from Units 1 and 2 to write a narrative piece about their animal that incorporates their research. This narrative takes the format of a choose-your-own-adventure. For their performance task, students plan, draft, and revise the introduction and one choice ending of the narrative with the support of both peer and teacher feedback. The second choice ending is planned, written, and revised on demand for the end of unit assessment. This performance task centers on CCSS ELA RI.4.9, W.4.2, W.4.3, W.4.4, W.4.6, W.4.7, W.4.8, and W.4.9b.
As of February 15, 2019, the website www.arkive.org is no longer available. This website is used as a resource in Grade 4, Module 2 of the Module Lessons and ALL Block. You can still access content, texts, and images, using the links below. These links are archived versions of the original content, text, and images that were found on www.arkive.org.
Please note that some of these links contain just single images of each animal; video and slideshows could not be captured in the archiving process.
We will post any new updates here.