Ms. McGuirk's 6th Grade Science Class


Monday, August 23rd: The 4 Parts of the Earth's System

Today we started on our second unit of Ecology! In this unit, we start things off by learning about the 4 major parts of our Earth's system: Geosphere, Atmosphere, Hydrosphere, and Biosphere.
  • Tonight's homework: Make 4 notecards using the 4 parts of the Earth's system that we learned today.  On the front, write the term, and on the back write the definition and provide an example of each!
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Tuesday, August 24th: Online Investigation of the 4 parts of the Earth's System

Today in class we investigated further the four parts of the Earth's system: Atmosphere, Hydrosphere, Biosphere and Geosphere.  Scholars investigated online, using the two websites linked below, and they filled out the worksheet that you can download below that:

Our Earthship!
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Wednesday, August 25th: Exploring the 4 parts of Earth's System outside!

Today we explored the nature outside Power Center Academy to make observations  regarding the 4 parts of the Earth's system.   Scholars were paired together, one scholar's job was to record observations, and one scholars job was to make observations.  You can find the observation worksheet below.
  • Tonight's Homework: Go outside around your house and describe your observations of at least 3 of the 4 parts of the Earth’s system. For each part that you are observing, you must write 3 sentences each for a total of 9 sentences. Then, describe 3 interactions that you see between two different parts of the Earth’s system using a complete sentence to describe each one. Total : 12 sentences for this assignment.  If you are not able to go outside, please look out a window or observe the nature out your car window on your drive home.

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Thursday, August 26th: Weekly Quiz 3

Today, scholars exhibited their knowledge and understanding of the 4 parts of the Earth's system by taking Weekly Quiz 3.  Scholars are also starting to track their progress within Unit 2: Ecology.  A copy of our Unit 2 Weekly Quiz Tracker can be downloaded below.
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Friday, August 27th: Video Exploration

  • Click on the link below.
  • On the left side of the screen, choose at least of the "Animal" videos
  • While watching, fill in the worksheet provided by Ms. McGuirk to further apply your knowledge of the four parts of the Earth's system.
  • Also, these videos will help prepare us for the upcoming lessons in our Ecology Unit! 
National Geographic Videos
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Monday, August 30th: Everything is Connected!

Today, we learned about three new vocabulary terms in our Ecology Unit: Ecology (the study of organisms and their interactions with each other and their environment), Biotic (living organisms such as plants and animals), and Abioti (non-living things such as temperature, light, and soil).   We investigated these terms using our textbook (Chapter 2, Section 1, page 48) and the Power Point that you can download below.  Also below are our Cornell Notes and Homework worksheet.
  • Tonight's Homework: Please observe three abiotic factors and three biotic factors from outside your home or apartment.  Write at least one way that they depend on each other. Combine these observations into a descriptive, 5-sentence paragraph.  You can write this assignment on the back of your Cornell Notes.
File Size: 7267 kb
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File Size: 47 kb
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File Size: 30 kb
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Tuesday, August 31st: Organization of our Environment!

Today, we finished our Cornell Notes by defining Population, Community, Ecosystem using pages 49,50, and 51 in our textbooks!  Once we were done discussing these new terms, we started on a worksheet (that you can download below).  This worksheet is for homework and will be due on Thursday, September 2nd.
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Wednesday, September 1st: Favorite Animal Project

After you've finished your research and are ready to complete your Power Point, download the following Power Point template and get started! Remember what you learned about Power Point in Ms. Simpson's class!!!
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Thursday, September 2nd: Weekly Quiz 4: Everything is Connected!

Today, we demonstrated our knowledge of our 6 vocabulary terms from this week on Weekly Quiz 4.  After completing today's weekly quiz, scholars were also asked to track their weekly quiz on their Weekly Quiz Tracker.  Instructions for tracking our weekly quizzes can be found below:
  • Go to
  • Log in using your username and password for Quia in the upper left-hand corner of the screen. 
  • Click on Science and your homeroom section
  • For whatever quiz you need to track, click on the bar graph symbol to the left of the quiz title --> this will let you view the results.
  • First, create a bar graph documenting your score on the front of your tracker.
  • Then, write down every question that you got wrong and the correct answer on the back.
  • If you need an extra sheet to continue writing questions that you got wrong, raise your hand for Ms. McGuirk.

Friday, September 3rd: Submitting our Favorite Animal Projects!

Today, we finished our Favorite Animal Projects, and submitted them to Ms. McGuirk's Teacher Projects Dropbox.  Instructions for submitting student projects can be found below:
  • Open Finer.
  • Locate the document that you want to submit to Ms. McGuirk
  • Make sure it has been saved like Ms. McGuirk has instructed.
  • Click on the Teacher Projects folder on your desktop.
  • Click on the folder with McGuirk --> you will see McGuirk Dropbox
  • Drag your document from your finder onto McGuirk Dropbox.
  • Click OK and you have successfully submitted your document!

Tuesday, September 7th: Living Things Need Energy

Today, we read Chapter 2, Section 2 (pages 52 & 53) in our textbook to learn 7 new vocabulary terms: Producer (autotroph), Consumer (heterotroph), Herbivore, Carnivore, Omnivore, Scavenger, and Decomposer.   See attached Power Point below to look at our notes for today, as well as the Cornell Notes worksheet that we use to take our notes.
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File Size: 51 kb
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Wednesday, September 8th: Online Practice of our Knowledge!

Today, we used an excellent website to help us practice our knowlegde of Producers vs. Consumers vs. Decomposers & Herbivores vs. Omnivores vs. Carnivores.  The games can be found by clicking on the below links:
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Thursday, September 9th: Weekly Quiz 5 Producers and Consumers

Today, we demonstrated our knowledge of our 7 vocabulary terms from this week on Weekly Quiz 5.  After completing today's weekly quiz, scholars were also asked to track their weekly quiz on their Weekly Quiz Tracker.

Friday, September 10th: Submitting our Favorite Animal Projects & Watching Planet Earth

Today, scholars submitted their Favorite Animal Projects to Ms. McGuirk's Dropbox for grading.  We began this assignment on last Wednesday (September 1st) and continued working on it last Friday (September 3rd), so this was the last opportunity for scholars to turn it in.  Then, we watched a few clips from "Planet Earth" to see real-life decomposers, producers, and consumers as they exist in places like the Amazon Rainforest!

Monday, September 13th: Food Chains, Food Webs & Energy Pyramids

Today, scholars took Cornell Notes using the remainder of Chapter 2, Section 2 in their science textbooks. We learned about 6 vocabulary terms (Food Chain, Food Web, Energy Pyramid, Primary Consumer, Secondary Consumer, and Tertiary Consumer.  The Power Point from today's lesson and a copy of today's Cornell Notes can be downloaded below:
  • Homework tonight:  Using today's vocabulary terms (see above), make 6 notecards.  On the front of each notecard, write the term (from the left side of your Cornell Notes), and on the back of each notecard, write the definition (from the right side of your Cornell Notes).
File Size: 3688 kb
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File Size: 51 kb
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Tuesday, September 14th: Creating our own Food Web!

Today, scholars were assigned an animal/plant and they were told where they got their energy(what they ate) and what they gave their energy to (what ate them).  Then, scholars constructed their own food chains in groups of three or four.  From those separate food chains, we joined together to make an entire ecosystem's food web. 

Wednesday, September 15th: Practicing our Knowledge of Food Webs

The concept of food chains and food webs can be tricky for some scholars, so we spent today's class practicing reading and deciphering food chains and food webs. The worksheets we used can be downloaded below.
  • Tonight's Homework: Using the worksheet that was given in class, cut out the animals/plants and construct your own food web on a separate sheet of paper.  Then label your animals/plants as the following: producer, primary, secondary, tertiary consumer, herbivore, omnivore, carnivore.  Finally, answer the five questions from your worksheet on the back of your worksheet.
File Size: 248 kb
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File Size: 248 kb
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Thursday, September 16th: Weekly Quiz 6 Food Chains & Food Webs

Today, we demonstrated our knowledge of our 6 vocabulary terms from this week on Weekly Quiz 6.  After completing today's weekly quiz, scholars were also asked to track their weekly quiz on their Weekly Quiz Tracker.

Friday, September 17th: Investigating the Food Web of an Owl

Today, scholars completed their second sixth grade science experiment!  We investigated the food web of a barn owl by dissecting an owl pellet - the regurgitated bones and fur of what owls eat.  Scholars identified the animals from which owls get their energy.  They also learned to identify and classify bones of animals like the shrew, vole, rodents, and birds.
  •  This weekend's homework: In preparation for our Biomes Research Project, scholars were given a research worksheet to complete over the weekend.  Scholars need to use Chapter 4, Section 1 of their textbooks (pages 94-101) to fill in the chart on the front of their worksheet and answer the questions on the back.
File Size: 50 kb
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Monday, September 20th: Biomes Presentation Project Overview

Today, we went over the expectations for our Biomes Presentation Projects!  These projects will consist of an individual and group aspect, and the rubric can be found below.  Scholars were given a research worksheet to fill out and complete by Tuesday, so that they could complete their virtual tour by the end of the week!
  • Tonight's Homework:  Scholars were given a news article handout about how farmers have been affecting the food chain that surrounds them by accidentally poisoning scavengers in that food chain, vultures.  There are five reading comprehension on the back of this worksheet for scholars to answer after reading. 
File Size: 45 kb
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File Size: 104 kb
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Tuesday, September 21st: Individual Work Time Day 2

Scholars were given the majority of the period to individually research their biomes.  Their research worksheets containing the information for all 4 components of their projects are due tomorrow!

Wednesday, September 22nd: Last day of individual work time!

Scholars were given their last day of individual work time, and so they needed to focus on creating their virtual tour of their biome!  Scholars are encouraged to be creative, to put in lots of pictures, custom animations, and designs!
  • Tonight's Homework: Make 6 notecards for each of the 6 major land biomes (Tundra, Grassland, Desert, Coniferous Forest, Deciduous Forest, and Tropical Forest).  On the back of each notecard scholars need to write the characteristic climate and animals/plants found in each biome.

Thursday, September 23rd: Weekly Quiz 7 & Group Presentation Meeting

Today in class, scholars completed a short, 10-question weekly quiz on the 6 land biomes of the world.  Then, scholars met with the other scholars in the class that shared the same biomes as they did in order to prepare for their presentations on Friday or Tuesday.  Download the below document to see the notes and information we gathered during today's meeting.
Click here to upload file

Friday, September 24th: Biomes Presentation Day 1

Monday, September 27th: Independent Ecology Unit Test Review

Tuesday, September 28th:  Biomes Presentations Day 2

Wednesday, September 29th: Ecology Unit Jeopardy Review

Thursday, September 30th: Ecology Unit Test

Friday, October 1st: Making our Vocab Ring

        This is the end of our Ecology Unit!                  Next Unit: Energy