The Atmosphere: It's a Gas! (AIG IRP)

Stage 3: Evaluate

Students will individually write a fictionalized point of view account of a particular gas molecule/compound’s journey through its respective atmospheric cycle. Teachers may want to randomly assign the molecule/compound through the student selection of a card or specifically assign the molecule/compound by student seating to ensure that all molecules/compounds are discussed and/or students in proximity to each other do not have the same molecule/compound to ensure that work remains individually completed.
Students should be assessed according to a rubric with similar elements as those shown below:

  1. Personifies the gas in an appropriate manner to add interest
  2. Maintains the gas’s consistent point of view
  3. Includes at least four significant “events” from the cycle
  4. Accurately follows the chronology of the cycle for the chosen “events”
  5. Uses scientific terminology correctly*  
  6. Defines/describes scientific terminology in “friendly” language to add meaning and detail
  7. Spelling and grammar are appropriate for this grade level

*Some teachers choose to ban terminology use for two reasons: to force students to use more description and to use the essays later as review tools.

Teacher Notes: Consider coordinating with the ELA teacher(s) prior to the assignment for help in preparing students for the point of view/personification essay.  Also, be aware that student science essays (fiction and non-fiction) may be used as evidence in students’ writing portfolios that should be following them throughout their school years.