Integrating science and literacy, especially during guided reading, can save you time as a teacher. It can also be a great way to engage students and help them make connections between different subjects. By combining the two subjects in the classroom, teachers can create engaging and meaningful lessons that help students build a deeper understanding of reading and science.
As a teacher, I struggled to find time to teach science as much as I would have liked. I always seemed behind in my lesson plans and found myself trying to catch up. Integrating subjects was the key to my problem!
Before integrating science into anything, you’ll need a great resource with various science-related texts. Don’t limit yourself to informational texts. Fiction texts can be science related too. If you do have a subscription for your classroom, like “Time for Kids” or “National Geographic for Kids”, these can be great resources for texts.
If you are looking for a ready-to-go resource that already integrates science AND reading for you, check out my latest resource, Reading Through Science™.
Here are three easy ways to integrate science into your literacy block.
Integrate Science through Interesting Texts:
One way to integrate science into reading lessons is by using texts incorporating scientific concepts. This approach can be particularly effective as the stories often provide a great opportunity to discuss important concepts in an engaging way. For example, a teacher might use a story about a butterfly’s life cycle to introduce the concept of metamorphosis. This can be a great way to approach a complex scientific concept in an easily understandable way.
One other benefit to using texts that integrate science is you can simultaneously teach reading comprehension skills and strategies. For example, it’s natural to teach about text features or sequencing when reading a nonfiction text about electricity.
Here’s another great post if you need more tips for increasing reading comprehension skills with your students.
Integrate with Science Experiments:
During literacy centers, I often had my students conduct science experiments based on the topic we were reading. The experiments provide students with the opportunity to not only gain a better understanding of the science topic but it also allows students to practice reading and following instructions (sequencing).
One great example of this is a teacher might have students read a story about the water cycle and then complete a lab activity that demonstrates the different stages of the cycle. This activity can be a great way to bring the scientific concept to life and help students make meaningful connections between the reading and the activity.
Integrate Science through Writing:
When teaching students writing, I love integrating science into the lesson. This can be done by having students research a scientific topic and write a report about it. This encourages critical thinking and the use of research skills.
Be sure to think outside the box! These topics can also be used for creative writing. For example, you could ask students to write a story about a character who encounters a scientific phenomenon such as an extreme type of weather.
Integrating science into literacy can be a great way to engage students and help them make meaningful connections between the subjects. By combining literature, and hands-on activities, and writing, teachers can create engaging and meaningful lessons that help students build a deeper understanding of literacy and science.
If you are looking for more ways to teach reading skills, check these fiction and nonfiction reading response activities.