Balance Inquiry


GWL 2nd Grade Balance Inquiry at Tappan Beach  

Second graders explored the essential question, "Is balance essential in all aspects of life?"  They made predictions and then participated in stations set-up at Tappan Beach.  
This interdisciplinary opportunity involved students exploring balance through Art Sculpture Creation, Yoga, and Music. Art Sculpture Creation with Ms. Moran enabled students to utilize natural resources (wood or stone blocks) and analyze a sculpture looking for evidence of symmetrical and asymmetrical designs. They then constructed their own sculptures making decisions as artists. In Yoga led by Mr. Carpenter, GWL students focused on tranquility, mind body soul balance and peacefulness in nature. They practiced different popular yoga poses on individual mats. In Music composition run by Mrs. Burmeister, students explored nature sounds including wind, birds, insects, and storms. Each group created a "soundscape" composition, using a variety of pitched and non-pitches percussion instruments and experimented with various dynamics, tempos, and timbre to find the balance for their instrumental ensembles. Lastly, a beach clean-up with Mrs. Marcantonio enabled the second graders to explore the shoreline ecosystem and the impact of cultural, or man-made items on biotic factors.  
As students concluded their work on balance, the same initial question was posed.  Students' thinking changed or deepened because of their experiences on the beach. A special “thank you” to the second-grade teachers and Collaboration Team who helped make this interdisciplinary experience possible.  

Students will understand….

Essential Overarching Question:

EQ1-Is balance essential?  (Kids are thinking in all aspects- Scientifically we will focus on- abiotic, biotic, and cultural.... What happens as cultural aspects of ecosystems increase?) 

EQ2-How do parts of a system work interdependently and dependently?   Provide examples to support your thinking.  (Question will be posed before the unit, during, and after.)

EQ3-How do questions about our world guide our inquiry and help us learn more?

Topical Essential Questions:

TEQ1-How do interdependent and dependent relationships impact an ecosystem?

TEQ2-How do individuals and communities impact the diversity, interdependence, and balance of ecosystems?
Article written with assistance from GWL Enrichment Teacher, Audra Marcantonio                                                                      Photos by Shelly Newman