Sunday, September 21, 2014

New blog design, new grade!

I have moved from the science lab to second grade! Busy, busy, busy about sums up my summer and school year so far! Moving and packing up a science lab is no easy feat! I am looking forward to second and can't wait to create new stuff for my new grade!


Monday, March 31, 2014

NSTA STEM Forum New Orleans

I am presenting and soooo excited! Earlier in the year, during football season, my colleagues and I were sitting in a professional development class, when we were toying with a new unit per our pd instructor and we got so excited about it, we decided to use it! We had a meeting after school the following week and invited the entire staff... Only a handful showed up, so that handful created an awesome unit and now we are going to New Orleans to present it! If you are going to the conference, stop by to check it out! More information to follow soon...

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Need science fair project help?

Do you need help looking for project ideas or you just need a completed project that you can use as a model? I am working on adding completed projects to my TPT store. I just added the first one: "Don't Even Sink About It"! It is about buoyancy and density with soda vs. diet soda. This experiment is more for the 3rd-5th grade groups. Below are pictures of a third grade class doing this experiment. After the experiment we weighed sugar vs. artificial sweetner and the difference amazed even me!
 





Monday, February 10, 2014

Rotation and Revolution

     I have been working the past two weeks on teaching my K and 1 group about rotation and revolution. Last week, we modeled rotation and revolution. First, we spin around and around and say revolution three times, then we switch directions. We do this on the carpet and if anyone feels dizzy, they get to sit down. This activity gets giggles and grins, galore! We also get my globes out and practice rotating them. Next, we all pull a chair out with plenty of space around them and practice revolving (or orbiting) the chair. Finally, I challenge them to rotate and revolve aroung their chair at the same time. In the past, I have had them make a sun to tape to their chair, and an earth (paper plates) hung around them with string, but this year I ran short on time. In first, we also discuss what earth looks like from space. We take a paper plate, fold it in fourths. I tell them to color it blue, however many parts they think the earth has water on and green for the land. They are usually amazed the the earth is 3/4 water. Then, for those that know their address, we travel from space to their house via google earth. This is always a big hit!
   This week, I cut up a black plastic tablecloth and used string to tie a piece around a large round tupperware container. Students get various balls and the tupperware container "our solar system" and have to orbit the smaller balls around a big one that they place in the middle. I saw this activity on a Bill Nye episode years ago and it is easy and fun! I have enough supplies for each table/four students per table. Balls from the dollar tree...I even found suns and mini globes! 


 
What does Rotation mean?
Rotation occurs when something is spinning around an axis.
What are some examples of things that rotate?
Tops, Ballerinas, Figure skaters, cyclones, Tornadoes, a merry-go-round, Earth
What is the difference between rotation and revolution?
Rotation occurs when an object spins around an axis.
Revolution occurs when an object spins around another object.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

So Sad...


Last week, I lost my beloved "Big Daddy". Our weather has been fluctuating between cold and hot for the past month and he got pneumonia. I rushed him to the vet when I came in and saw him lethargic, but that afternoon he passed. It has been tragic for me and my kids. :( He is buried in our school butterfly garden and there will be a memorial put there for him.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Mock Trials and Reptiles

We just finished analyzing evidence from our crime scene in 2nd grade. Felix's body disappeared from the crime scene and it is up to us to figure out who did it. So, we had a trial. It was so much fun! I scripted a few pages to get everyone going, but once they started, they didn't want to stop! I have quite a few actors and actresses! If you have never used a "mock trial" in your classroom, you should give it a try. It will really work at any grade. There are tons of resources online for fairy tale "mock trials" to get you started. Then you can pick your topic. Science A to Z has debate/argument questions that would work great for a science topic. In kindergarten, we used our observation skills with superworms and Big Daddy, one of our resident bearded dragons. Next week, we learn about owls and check out an owl pellet. Ewwww!
 




Monday, September 23, 2013

Gingerbread on the loose!

Our first graders are solving mysteries through a gingerbread man theme. Since my kids love all things detective,  I found a gingerbread girl I could use to create mysteries all over campus. We have a "crime scene" board with clues and suspects, but as it turns out "Gingy" is acting on her own and is loose on campus. We have tracked fingerprints and footprints so far. We "installed" a surveillance camera over the weekend and caught Gingy doing all kinds of things. She even has her own Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Have-you-seen-Gingy/1393241127573457?ref=hl