Monday, November 28, 2011

Annotated Bib - Living or Nonliving

Perhaps one of the simplest ways to classify things is to ask yourself, is it living or nonliving? What does it mean to be alive? Living things grow, reproduce, and have basic needs. Nonliving things don't really need anything, can't reproduce and they don't grow.


Animals Grow and Change (Introducing Living Things)
. By Bobbie Kalman. 2007. 24p. Crabtree Publishing Company, (9870778732274). Gr PreK-1.

This book takes us through the life cycle of many different types of animals. We learn that animals can be born or hatched, that some go through metamorphosis while others begin as small versions of the adult. The growing and changing that these animals do is part of why you know they are living things.

Is it Living or Nonliving. By Rebecca Rissman. 2009. 24p. Heineman-Raintree, (9781432922726). Gr K-2.

By learning to ask questions, children begin to explore the classification of living and nonliving things. This simple book will introduce students to the characteristics something needs to be classified as a living organism. If those criteria are not met, one can then assume that the object is nonliving.

Living Things N
eed Water. By Bobbie Kalman. 2007. 24p. Crabtree Publishing Company, (9870778732563). Gr. K-2.

This book goes over water and it's role in the lives of living things. Plants need water, animals need water, most drink it, some live in it. From streams to the oceans, water and living things come hand in hand.

Plants are Living Things. By Bobbie Kalman. 2007. 24p. Crabtree Publishing Company, (9870778732570).

Many children will have an easy time accepting that animals are alive. This book shows how plants are living things as well. We go over the characteristics of living things, then show how a plant is able to meet the criteria. Like animals plants grow, need nutrition, and there are many different kinds.

What's Alive? By Kathleen Zoehfeld. Illus. by Nadine Westcott. 1995. 32p. Collins, (9870064451321). Gr PreK-1.

This book makes for a great read aloud to children. It gets them involved by suggesting they make drawings to sort and asking questions to compare themselves, a known living organism, to other "unknowns" to decide if that unknown is living or nonliving.


How Plants Grow
. This activity shows how plants, as living things, have certain needs that need to be met to be able to live and grow. After children are able to successfully grow their plant, they then experiment with the plants needs to see what happens with too much or too little of a certain thing, water, heat, light, etc.

Plants and Animals-Living Things. Here is a game where children can put their new knowledge to the test. Their job is to take pictures of the living things on the playground. Can they find all eight?

For Teachers:

Virginia Standards of Learning
SOL K.6 The student will investigate and understand the differences between living organisms and nonliving objects. Key concepts include
a. all things can be classified as living or nonliving and
b. living organisms have certain characteristics that distinguish them from nonliving objects including growth, movement, response to the environment, having offspring, and the need for food, air, and water.

Background Knowledge

  • Living is used to describe anything that is or has ever been alive (e.g., dog, flower, seed, log).
  • Nonliving is used to describe anything that is not now nor has ever been alive (e.g., rock, mountain, glass, wristwatch).
  • All living things grow, breathe, reproduce, excrete, respond to stimuli, and have similar basic needs like nourishment.

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