Teacher Page









Student Page


Teacher Process

This lesson's technology application skills are taught in a computer lab setting following the completion of the second grade science kit covering the Organisms unit.

Terrarium (or Aquarium) Diagram:

  1. Students open a drawing program.
  2. Increase or decrease the white drawing area to fill the general program screen area, approximately 8 inches by 6 inches. Make sure the drawing area does not go beyond the program frame thus eliminating scroll bars on the right side and bottom.
  3. Students draw the terrarium diagram in the white drawing area. Include all of the materials used in class to construct the terrarium, i.e. gravel, black soil, moss, plant seedlings, pill bugs, millipedes, etc. in the diagram.
  4. When the diagram is complete, save the file in the student's assigned home directory folder or on a storage disk.

Written Topical Paragraph:

  1. Students open a word processing program.
  2. Page orientation is set to landscape, font size is set to approximately 140, and font style is set to a legible style such as Arial, and margins are set at .5 inches.
  3. Students word process one or two paragraphs on a topic related to the Organisms science unit. Writing topics could include: describe how to make a terrarium, describe the environment in the terrarium, describe the various organisms in the terrarium and how they interact, make a prediction on what will happen in the terrarium if one organism was removed, etc.
  4. The text should fill the paper top to bottom. Increase or decrease the font size if the text is too short or too long.
  5. When the written paragraph is complete, save the file in the student's assigned home directory folder or on a storage disk.


  1. Open a word processing program.
  2. Set up the page exactly the same as the written paragraph activity; page orientation is landscape, no font settings are needed.
  3. Open the terrarium diagram file in the word processing program. Select INSERT, IMAGE or PICTURE, FROM FILE. Locate the saved diagram file and select it to open in the word processing program.
  4. Click on the corner handles of the diagram and enlarge the drawing to fill the page which is landscape orientation.
  5. Print the diagram on a color printer.
  6. Next open the saved text paragraph file and print the paragraph on a laser printer.

Three-dimensional Wall Display:

  1. Construct the three-dimensional wall display mount with using one large sheet of colored construction paper, and two half-sheets of manila paper.
  2. Place the large sheet of construction paper horizontally on the table work area. Take the two manila sheets both positioned horizontally or landscape and fold each sheet into four sections or making two folds in each sheet.
  3. Using a liquid glue, glue the folded manila sheets to the large colored construction sheet. Glue the paper edges and the folds to the paper so the manila sheets zigzag up then down and are framed in the center of the large sheet of colored construction paper.
  4. Allow the glue to dry.
  5. Next fold and cut the terrarium diagram drawing, positioned horizontally or landscape, into four sections or two folds. Cut down the three folds.
  6. Glue the four diagram sections onto the manila three-dimensional frame. Glue the sections on every other folded section or on the right incline of the manila frame.
  7. Repeat steps 5 and 6 using the written paragraph. The paragraph is folded and cut into four sections and glued onto the manila frame on the four left decline sections.
  8. Now mount the three-dimensional project on the wall. Walk passed the project from left to right and see the display change from diagram to text, which is similar to viewing a highway billboard that flips and changes its message.

Lesson Examples:

Lesson Examples in PDF



These pages were made through TeacherTECH, the teacher professional development component of GirlTECH , which is sponsored by the Center for Excellence and Equity in Education (CEEE) with support from the National Science Foundation through EPIC .

Copyright © June 2005 by Diane Sindelar.