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Fun Frogs
Lab 1 - Tails and Tadpoles

Teacher Portal


Launch the Engage Section

ACTS is what the teacher will do and ASKS is how the teacher will facilitate.

  1. Write the question “What do we know about the life of a frog?” on the board.
  2. As students respond to the questions, and share their ideas and impressions, write them on the board.
  3. Shift the conversation to include their habitat/environment.
  4. Continue taking notes of students’ words.
  5. Draw a box on the board and title it “We wonder…” As students offer questions, note them in the Wonder Box.
  1. Let’s think about frogs. Has anyone ever seen one in real life? What did you notice about it?
  2. How do they move? Does that change in their lifetime? How/why?
  3. Where do they live in nature? What sorts of things do frogs need to survive? (Water, land, food, etc.)
  4. Wow, we know a lot of things! What do we wonder about?  Does anyone have any questions about the life of a frog?
  5. Sample questions could include: How do frogs grow legs? What happens to their tails? Can frogs live in saltwater and freshwater?

Getting the Students Ready to Build

Let’s think about the kinds of natural habitats we described. If we could build a habitat together, which should it be?
(List habitats and vote on them. Habitats could include rainforest, lakeside, etc.)

Facilitate the Build

  1. InstructInstruct students to join their groups and fill out the Robotics Roles & Routines sheet. Use the Suggested Role Responsibilities slide in the Lab Image Slideshow as a guide for students to complete this sheet.

    Instruct students that together, they are going to construct the frog habitat.

    They will model it on one of the sample images. Have students vote on which of the two samples to use.

    Sample 1:

    Frog in Habitat
    Frog in Habitat (1)

    Sample 2:

    Frog in Water
    Frog in Habitat (2)

    • Using the VEX GO Kit materials and classroom craft materials, students will build a habitat for a frog.
      Frog Environment
      Build a Frog Habitat
    • Students will work in their teams to create an element of the habitat and will put it together with the teacher to create a diorama like set up.
    • The habitat will be used as a staging space for the rest of the unit, so must be big enough to include multiple frog models at a time.
  2. DistributeDistribute kit materials, pencils, and paper to each group, and review what classroom craft materials are available.

    Each group should take a turn to state what part of the environment they are working on before they start building, to make sure all important elements are included.

  3. FacilitateFacilitate the building process by asking questions as you help groups put their pieces together.
    • How does your build connect to the other groups’ work?
    • How do you think we could represent water in our habitat?
    • How can we represent nature well in the habitat?
  4. OfferOffer suggestions and note positive team building and problem solving strategies as teams build together.
A VEX GO character

Teacher Troubleshooting

Facilitation Strategies

  • Draw it! If students do not have access to a camera or device, they can just as easily sketch their habitats.
  • Field Journal Writer’s Block? Offer students guiding questions to help them get underway.  Once they’ve decided on their perspective, ask questions like:
    • Frog’s perspective: How does it feel to change as you grow? What is the tadpole looking forward to about growing up? What is something new it can do with legs? Where does the tadpole like to do all day? What is its favorite meal?
    • Scientist perspective: What did you notice about the tadpole when it hatched? How big or small is it? What is unique about the legs when they start to grow? How can the tadpole interact with its environment differently than the frog? What similarities do you see?
  • Everyone will get a chance to build. Remind students that there are 4 models that will be created, so they will get multiple turns to be both Builders and Journalists throughout the unit. If turn taking is a problem, use a name pulled from a hat, or roll a die to help students make decisions about who goes first.