Day 19 – Culminating Activity

Painted lady butterfly egg © Harald Süpfle. CC-BY-SA 3.0.

  • Standards Overview

    Reading Strategy:
    Culminating Activity
    Science Concept:
    Reviewing Recorded Data in Science Notebooks
    Reading TEKS:
    2.13 E & G
    Science TEKS:
    2.2(A, D, E, F); 2.10(C)
    Figure 19:
    Reading/ Comprehension Skills F
    Speaking K-12, 19 TAC 74.4(c)(4)D
    Materials for Reading Mini Lesson:
    See “Inquiry Circle Group.”
    Materials for Inquiry Circle Groups:

    Inquiry Circle Group Menu of Choices page; materials to support group projects will vary based on choice.

    Materials for Science Whole Group Lesson:

    Science notebooks, pencils.

    Content Vocabulary:

    Butterfly — Group of insects that have four broad wings, narrow body and fly mainly in the daytime.

    Caterpillar — Larva of a butterfly.

    Cycle — A series of events regularly repeated in the same order.

    Life Cycle — Series of change undergone by an organism over its lifespan.

    Larva/larvae — Wingless, often worm-like form of a newly hatched insect (larva is singular, larvae is plural).

    Pupa — An insect in the stage of development between a larva and a fully grown adult.

    Science and Literacy Connection:
    We finish our projects by creating a product to share what we’ve learned and apply it to something new.
  • Reading Mini-Lesson


    See “Inquiry Circle” section.


  • Inquiry Circle


    Students have worked in inquiry circle groups to research various organisms. During this time, students have practiced becoming a scientist by speaking, reading, and writing like one. Inquiry circle groups will work together to create a product to share at the scientific symposium.

    TIME: 30–45 minutes


    1. Say something like, “Now that everyone has written a synthesis statement about their organism, we will create a product to share what we know in a scientific symposium.”
    2. Say something like, “Groups will work together to pick one product to create. Remember, your product must show what you know about your organism’s physical traits as adults and offspring.”
    3. Pass out the choice sheet and review the options (see PDF). For technology-based products, be sure the app is available in your school district and that you are familiar with it.
    4. Facilitate groups (if needed) to come to a consensus about which product to create.
    5. Including today, there are three days scheduled to work on the culminating product.
    6. Groups will present their products on the last day of the unit.
  • Science Lesson


    Student teams review Science Notebooks to discuss the daily observations and recorded data they have recorded on their developing organisms.

    TIME: 30 minutes


    What changes have we seen and recorded over the last few weeks in our butterfly habitats?


    All organisms have a life cycle. Life cycles begin with reproduction in which new individual organisms are produced by their “parents.” The offspring grow to resemble their parents in structure and in behavior that is adapted for survival in their particular environments. The features of any given organism usually are uniquely suited (or adapted) to the environment in which it lives. As new adults, the offspring reproduce the next generation to follow them and then die.

    Life cycles last just a few days or weeks for some organisms, while others can last for many decades or hundreds of years. The important thing about life cycles is that the instructions for successful organisms and the long-term survival of organisms are passed on from generation to generation through genes.


    • Science Notebooks
    • Pencils



    Give students time to observe their organisms (whether they are in the larva, pupa, or adult stage), take measurements of the larvae (if applicable), and record their observations in their science notebooks. Facilitate group discussions by asking questions like, “What did you notice?” “What has changed since the last time you observed your organisms?”


    1. Write the words “Life Cycle” on the board. Ask students for their ideas about what a life cycle is. Accept all responses and record them on the board for discussion later. Ask how “life cycle” may relate to the observations they have been making on the developing butterflies.
    2. Next, gather the class around the growth habitats. By now the butterflies should have emerged.
    3. Ask the students to go to the beginnings of their Science notebooks and share their first observations of the organisms (pupa) when they arrived. What did they look like then? What do they look like now?
    4. Tell the class that today they will have 10 minutes to review all the changes they have seen and recorded in their notebooks beginning from the first day. They may add any new information from observations and should pay close attention to how many changes they have observed.
    1. Circulate among the teams as they discuss their notebooks. Ask them what they notice about their observations over the past weeks (physical changes, movement, etc.) 
    1. After 10 minutes, ask for volunteers to summarize what their team discussed/observed. Write key words/phrases on the board as they report. (Listen for the use of new vocabulary and measurements made.)
    2. After all teams have shared, direct their attention to the board. Read the words/phrases that came from their reporting.
    3. Look for and point out any correlations between what they recorded and what their ideas were about a “life cycle.” Then, write the definition of “Life cycle” as stated in vocabulary list and ask if their ideas were close.
    1. Tell the class that tomorrow they will use what they have learned about life cycles to develop their own diagram of the life cycle of the painted lady butterfly.
    1. Listening to discussions and reports, were students accurately communicating new knowledge about the stages in the life of a butterfly? Were they using evidence to support their statements?
  • Expanded Standards

    Reading TEKS:
    2.13 E &G. Inquiry and research: listening, speaking, reading, writing, and thinking using multiple texts. The student engages in both short-term and sustained recursive inquiry processes for a variety of purposes. The student is expected to: (E) demonstrate understanding of information gathered; and (G) use an appropriate mode of delivery, whether written, oral, or multimodal, to present results.
    Figure 19:
    Reading/Comprehension Skills. Students use a flexible range of metacognitive reading skills in both assigned and independent reading to understand an author’s message. Students will continue to apply earlier standards with greater depth in increasingly more complex texts as they become self-directed, critical readers. The student is expected to (F) make connections to own experiences, to ideas in other texts, and to the larger community and discuss textual evidence.
    Student Expectations for Speaking K-12, 19 TAC 74.4(c)(4). The student is expected to: (D) speak using grade-level content area vocabulary in context to internalize new English words and build academic language proficiency; (E) share information in cooperative learning interactions.
    Science TEKS:

    2.2(A, D, E, F). Scientific investigation and reasoning. The student develops abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry in classroom and outdoor investigations. The student is expected to: (A) ask questions about organisms, objects, and events during observations and investigations; (D) record and organize data using pictures, numbers, and words; (E) communicate observations and justify explanations using student-generated data from simple descriptive investigations; and (F) compare results of investigations with what students and scientists know about the world.

    2.10(C). Organisms and environments. The student knows that organisms resemble their parents and have structures and processes that help them survive within their environments. The student is expected to: (C) investigate and record some of the unique stages that insects such as grasshoppers and butterflies undergo during their life cycle.