What Can We Learn from the Extremes In Nature?

----- Unit Goals -----
----- Activating Prior Knowledge about Informational Text -----
----- Examples of Extremes -----
----- In the News -----

We have begun our new unit. Over the next 6 weeks we will be trying to answer the questions "What can we learn from the extremes of nature?" This topic includes topics such as extreme weather (tornadoes, hurricanes, ice storms, blizzards), earthquakes, landslides and volcanoes, extreme survival, and extreme characteristics. We will also pull in what we have been learning in science and social studies (empowerment and disempowerment).


  • Use text features to predict and ask/answer questions about the text
  • Make connections (text-to-self, text-to-text, text-to-world)
  • Activate and use prior knowledge to what the author says
  • Understanding ‘on the page’ explicit information ("on the lines" information)
    • Orally and in written form, communicate ideas using specific and relevant textual examples as well as personal knowledge/experience
    • organize and present information gathered from texts
    • Main ideas & Supporting details; Summarizing key points; Note taking
  • Offer, using various formats (oral and written), personal, critical, and/or evaluative responses ('between the lines")
    • Compare & Contrast; some observations go beyond the obvious and supported with reasonable explanations
    • Cause & Effect;
    • Opinion vs Fact;
  • Blend prior knowledge with author’s ideas to come up with new ideas or insightful connections

Activating Prior Knowledge

First, what is informational text?

What are some extremes of nature?

  • hurricanes
  • tornadoes
  • extreme thunder storms
  • blizzards and ice storms
  • fire storms
  • tsunamis
  • volcanic eruptions
  • earthquakes
  • droughts
  • floods
  • landslides/mud slides

In the News

What can we learn from these "In the News" articles about extremes in nature?
For example: What are the issues or concerns discussed? What are the lessons learned? Has there been breakthroughs in our understanding?

Tsunami Port Alberni 1964

Tsunami Warning in BC January 2018

Volcano Eruption - Philippines 2018

Ice Storm 2017