No prerequisites are needed for this lesson. This will be an introductory lesson on worms. A mini-lesson can be conducted on how to treat a living animal.
Given a worm to examine, students will:
This lesson can be used as an extension piece in learning about the environment and how to recycle leftover school food. This introductory lesson will be the student’s first introduction to worms. Students will be observing a specific type of worm called Red Wigglers. These worms will be used throughout the year to break down leftover food scraps.
This lesson is specifically designed for special education students. With that in mind, instruct students how to observe worms and to not touch the worm until told to do so. Also provide rubber gloves (the kind from hospitals) if your student has sensory issues.
Each student will be given one worm on a piece of paper and a magnifying glass. Visuals will be provided to aid non-verbal students. Students will first observe the worm. Is it crawling? Is it coiled up? What does it look like? Teachers should read about worms beforehand to be prepared for questions, such as: “Is it a baby snake?” and “Is that yellow stuff pee?”
Worm Facts (to help with students observations)
*Each item below is for each individual student
Session 1 Beginner Worksheet (PDF)
Session 1 Emergent Worksheet (PDF)
Session 1 Advanced Worksheet (PDF)
Beginner Visuals Worksheet (PDF)
Session 1 Advanced Homework (PDF)
*Each item listed below is for each group
Emergent Assessment/Review Worksheet (PDF)
Advanced Assessment/Review Worksheet (PDF)
Session 2 Beginner/Emergent Worksheet (PDF)
Session 2 Advanced Worksheet (PDF)
Prep for Session #1
Prep for Session #2
Remember that worms do not like light and once they are finished observing they need to cover their habitat with construction paper and keep in a cool dry place. These habitats should be used for a day or two and are not to be permanent homes for the worms. If you would like to keep worms long term, please see extension lesson on Teachers TryScience called Breakdown: Composting with Earthworms! Please also see extension for a fun activity called Dirt Dessert!
Please see the beginner, emergent, and advanced Assessment/Review worksheets used in Session #2 of the Procedure.
You can also use the rubric below.
Students with Autism - Prompt levels
Wormy World Rubric (PDF)
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