The Dancing Scientist

Lisa R. Mattocks

Lesson Goals

The learners will understand that
* ecosystems are affected by forces and changes, both
natural changes ( earthquakes, flooding, volcanoes, hurricanes, wildfires) and
man-made (pollution and arson)
* living things (biotic factors) depend on nonliving things (abiotic factors)for shelter, safety, and protection
* locomotor and non-locomotor movement.

Expressing through movement natural disruptions and human disruptions of the ecosystem


iPads, photographs or pictures of the following: tornado, hurricane, volcano erupting, a wildfire, and pollution along with the aftermath of the natural and man-made disruption, open space for movement, props such as scarves, and student written assessment for reflection.


Future plans are to present this section through a Google Slide presentation 1. What are natural disruptions of the ecosystem? What are man-made disruptions of the ecosystem? Show pictures of the following: a tornado, a hurricane, a volcano, a wildfire, and the landforms following the devastations or the disruptions.
Essential Questions: How do living things (biotic factors) depend on non-living things (abiotic factors) for shelter, safety, and protection? In what ways can natural disasters disrupt a stable ecosystem? In what ways can human activity create an unbalanced ecosystem? In what ways do humans positively and negatively affect an ecosystem?
2. Warm-up: Exploration of locomotor and non-locomotor movements on the dance space. Reflect the imagery of the pictures in the Google Slides with movement vocabulary and demonstrate through improv movement.
Essential Questions: What kinds of movements are demonstrated during locomotor movements? What kinds of movements are demonstrated during non-locomotor movements?
3. Divide into small groups to create choreography based on the natural disturbances or human disturbances using locomotor, non-locomotor movements, and levels.
4. Through the use of technology (iPad) the groups video and view the progress made through the process to accomplish clarity and intent while dancing and monitoring their goals to improve performance quality for an informance.
5. Informance and written assessment with class discussion.

Differentiation Approaches

The students are grouped heterogeneously within the small groups so the different levels work together to accomplish the goal as a group and learning the 21st century skills of cooperation and the Multiple Intelligences.


1. Students will be able to demonstrate their knowledge of natural disruptions and man-made disruptions through movement phrases, and defend their ideas presented. 2. Students’ questions are relevant as a result of the student presentations during the discussion/written assessment. 3. The student knowledge will be documented with the use of the iPads

Follow Up and Extension Ideas

How can the study of these effects help us solve real world pollution problems? Are there trade-offs or solutions that might help restore balance to a disturbed ecosystems, such as conservation efforts and recycling?
5.L.2.2 Classify the organisms within an ecosystem according to the function they serve: producers, consumers, or decomposers (biotic factors)

Additional Details

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