Cycles Storyline®

Cycles Storyline Frieze Cycles Storyline Frieze


An Image of the cover of the Cycles Storyline Resource Book

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Overview: The Cycles Storyline begins when a large, paper school bus appears in the hallway, outside the classroom. A letter from Ms. Frizzle of Magic School Bus land arrives shortly after. In the letter Ms. Frizzle tells the students how kids from all over America help her create her books and DVDs. She invites the lucky class to create her next DVD about cycles and states clear guidelines and expectations for the project. Brandon Cycles

First… I want you to create a Magic School Bus character.

Second… I want you to learn about a sunflower and its life cycle, and create a sunflower field. Third… you will all need to work together to get things done. Magic School Bus kids cooperate at all times. How will you do this? And fourth… remember to keep your imagination and sense of humor alive at all times on the bus. You will use it to have fun and create an exciting DVD. I will send weekly clues to guide your cycle study as you explore Magic School Bus land and create the new Cycles DVD. Ms. Frizzle ends her letter, telling the students that their classroom teacher will be their guide. After students become Magic School Bus characters, they learn about sunflowers, document their information for the Cycles DVD, and create a sunflower field. Students then role play, shrinking into the sunflower field, to get a big picture of how it all looks. An incident, needing to be solved, occurs while they are in the sunflower field. Once a week, a new cycle clue arrives and more cycles are studied. A format, similar to the sunflower activities, is used to study the following:

  • Bee
  • Butterfly
  • Ant
  • Ladybug
  • Seasons
  • Rock
  • Water
  • Moon

Additional information is collected and photographed for a Comic Life formatting of the new Cycles DVD. In the end, Ms. Frizzle arrives for the premiere, where she admires and accepts the new Cycles DVD.

Insects and life cycles are the main curricular focus of this Storyline. Visual art, writing, poetry and process drama are also strongly represented.

‟The Cycles Storyline is packed with learning. Joanna Cole’s Magic School Bus framework makes the study lively, fun and personal for kids. I find this a good way to cover designated yearly curriculum in a creative and meaningful way.” — Colleen Vallerga

The Magic School Bus

Table of Contents:

ant diagram ant diagram

Storyline Outline i-vii The Cycles Storyline: Episode One: The Hook 1-3 Episode Two: Characers 3-5 Episode Three Magic School Bus Rules 5 Episode Four: Setting: Sunflower Field 6-11 Episode Five: Incidents 11-12 Episode Six: Life Cycles

  • Bee 12-18
  • Butterfly 18-24
  • Ant 24-29
  • Ladybug 30-35

Episode Seven: Daily Rhythms 35 Episode Eight: Earth Cycles 36-41

  • Seasons
  • Rock
  • Water
  • Moon
sunflower cycle sunflower cycle

Episode Nine: Cycles DVD 41-42 Episode Ten: The Premiere 42-43 Episode Eleven: Reflection 44 Appendix One: Curriculum 45-48 Appendix Two: Calendar 49-52 Appendix Three: Writing and Poetry

  • Biography 55
  • Magic School Bus Journal 57-58
  • Daily Rhythms 59-60
  • Plant Story: Sunflower Seed Journey 61-63
  • Poetry: What is a Sunflower? 64-65
  • Insect Story: Bee Dance 66-68
  • Poetry: Bee Sounds 69-70
  • Insect Story: Butterfly Day 71-74
  • Poetry: Being a Butterfly 75-77
  • Insect Story: Enemy Ants 78-82
  • Poetry: The Mighty Ant 83-84
  • Insect Story: Ladybug’s Escape 85-89
  • Poetry: LADYBUGS 90-91
  • Poetry: Metaphors 92-93
  • Song: Sunflower Field 94-95
dragonfly fact chart dragonfly fact chart

Appendix Four: Storyline Visuals

  • School Bus 99
  • Characters 99
  • Sunflower Frieze 101

Appendix Five: Cycles DVD

  • Sunflower
    • Diagram, Fact Chart, Life Cycle, Homework 105
  • Bee
    • Diagram, Fact Chart, Homework 107
    • Life Cycle 109
    • Bee Art 111
  • Lady Bug
    • Diagram, Fact Chart, Homework 113
    • Life Cycle 115
    • Ladybug Art 117
  • Rock
    • Life Cycle 119

Appendix Six: Books 121-124 Appendix Seven: Posttest 125-131

Curriculum Focus:

Genna Language Arts

  • Reading:
    • Fiction and Nonfiction
    • Understand, learn and use new vocabulary
    • Obtain information from printed material
    • Describe new information gained from reading or listening to an informational text.
    • Read informational text to locate specific information.
    • Interpret information from charts and diagrams.
  • Writing:
    • Modes:
      • Narrative
      • Descriptive
      • Imaginative
      • Expository: brief informative reports, friendly letter
    • Traits:
      • Voice
      • Ideas
      • Word Choice
      • Conventions
      • Organization
      • Sentence Fluency
    • Skills: Genna
      • Parts of Speech (verbs, adjectives, nouns)
      • Vocabulary
      • Introductory sentence, supporting sentences and concluding sentence
      • Beginning Paragraphing
      • Main Idea
      • Story Structure: beginning, middle, end
      • Plan, draft and revise an original piece of writing
      • Grammar and punctuation
      • Legible writing
    • Author’s Craft:
      • Five Senses
      • Super Sentences
      • Vivid Verbs
      • Dynamic Adjectives
    • Poetry:
      • Simile
      • Metaphor
      • Verbs
      • Onomatopoeia

Listening and Speaking

  • Science Bumblebee
    • Life Cycles
    • Earth Cycles
    • Insects
    • Plants
    • Characteristics, Structure, and Functions of Organisms
    • Basic Needs of Living Things
    • Similarities and Differences Between Organisms
    • Animal Life (food, shelter, protection)
    • Adaptations
    • Animal Classification: Insects
    • Scientific Process:
      • Experimentation
      • Observation
      • Data Collection
  • Cooperative Group Work
    • Art
      • Visual Art
    • Music
      • Create and Present: Song Writing
    • Theater
      • Process Drama

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