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Showing posts with label simple science ideas. Show all posts
Showing posts with label simple science ideas. Show all posts

Roller Coaster Theme Park

Time for some simple science. Here is a great way to get your little scientists to build a simple roller coaster. Here is what you need:

1. Pipe insulation tubes 3/4 size cut in half (I used a carving knife)
2. cup for the marble to land in
3. marbles (be prepared to lose some passengers
4. The book Roller Coaster by Marla Frazee
5. cut strips and colored construction paper for an art project
6. Anchor chart
7. colored roller coaster pattern (included at the end of this post)

Now, for the lesson:
1. I always start off with a question, "How many of you have ever been on a roller coaster?" They are directed to pick a ticket for the ride based on the answer yes or no I have been on a roller coaster. I let them know they are going on one right now...I then let them into my room and I "buckle" them up for the ride using ribbon attached with tape to a wall. I let them know that all hands and arms must remain in the roller coaster at all times. I collect their tickets and while they are on the ride I glue their "tickets" down on our anchor chart.
2. We discuss that some roller coasters have straight flat areas, curves, hills, and loops. Some have them all. However an engineer wants to build a roller coaster that is safe for everyone. They use the idea of motion to get them understanding it is a push and a pull, momentum has to occur, and gravity slows you down.  I then show them this video... It shows loops, curves, hills, and more!

3. Now it is time to build and test our roller coasters. I give them each a check off sheet, a cup and a marble, and one track to start with. We practice how to get the marble passenger in the cup. Not too much momentum and not too little. We try the straight track...then the curve...then the hill. Finally...
4. I give them one more track to add onto their coaster. I use masking tape to tape it together. Now it is time for the loop. We talk about safety and how engineers need to create a coaster that is safe for the passengers.
5. I give the kiddos time to work on their coasters with teams to collaborate...
6. We follow up with a share out of what we learned by showing the different types of coasters. Finally, we create an art activity that shows loops, curves, hills, and more!
I have them write: Roller Coasters Can...go straight, curve, go down a hill, and loop. The words go on each piece of paper. We also display our tickets to the ride...Yes I have been on a roller coaster...No I haven't been on a roller coaster...

Have fun with this simple science activity! Science is fun in any school yard!

Kindergarten Sun Protectors

We are learning about the weather in Kindergarten. This week, we discussed how we protect ourselves from weather.

Here in Wisconsin, we get tornadoes. We practice tornado drills. We practiced to remind ourselves why we take shelter. We talked about lightening and rain and how we protect ourselves. We then focused on the sun and the many ways we protect ourselves from getting too hot or sunburned. We read the EPIC Book...

Two major NGSS standards can be met with this activity in a simple science way!

K-PS3-1. Make observations to determine the effect of sunlight on Earth’s surface.

2. Use tools and materials to design and build a structure that will reduce the warming effect of sunlight on an area.

Here is what we did...We made sun protection for our Beanie Babies! I love their creativity! I set up the STEM Store at our supply table with the following:
*styrofoam cups and bowls (they are easy to poke a hole in)
*pipe cleaners
*milk cartons (easy to get at school)
*masking tape
*toilet paper and paper towel tubes (ask the janitor to save them for you...)
*Beanie Babies (I have small ones that McDonald's had...they work great!)
*I also put out a bucket of sand on blue paper so it looks like it is at the beach! They put their protectors in the sand then for the full effect!

STEM supplies at the STEM Store!

One of the many sun protectors that were made!

This is a fun and easy way to add non-fiction reading, NGSS standards, and a STEM project to your day!


Time For Oobleck!

It is almost time for Read Across America! Time for reading...and science! Time for Oobleck! This simple science activity is sure to get them excited about both! I am so thrilled to share one of my favorite lessons that works perfectly with my FOSS Solids and Liquids Unit. We spend a lot of time trying to add engaging activities to our school day and  this one seems to really surprise and amaze my students. The book Oobleck is a fun Dr. Suess book that links science into your classroom!

Fun with Non-Newtonian Fluids!

Here is my hour long lesson plan...
1. We start with the characteristics of a solid and a liquid
2. I then share with them that today we are going to learn about something that acts like a liquid and a solid. I then share with them it is all because of King Derwin of Didd. I then share with them the book. It is a long book...but reading it and changing your voice keeps them engaged!
3. We then use the the Oobleck sheet that has them see how Oobleck acts...Is it a solid or liquid?
4. We continue our experiments with five objects that either sink or stay on the top. The students are amazed as to how it acts.
5. We wrap up by writing the recipe for Oobleck and understand a non-Newtonian fluid by filling in the blanks.
6. I they get done early I have them add to our classroom graph...Do You Like Oobleck?

 I have each table set up before they come in and they meet me at the carpet for the intro and book. This helps when my time is limited...
You can find my OOBLECK TPT Pack Here!

A Sour Taste in Science...

Yep...friends! Science can leave a sour taste...because of lemonade that is!!! Especially if the recipe is too concentrated with lemon juice or too diluted! This lesson is one I use for many reasons...

1. A wrap up for our FOSS Mixtures and Solutions vocabulary review...
2. A fun way to connect what we learned with Kool Aide and create a way for my students to make their own recipe using math measurements!
3. Connecting reading into my science classroom!
4. Letting my students be facilitators of their learning!
5. A way to assess vocabulary and still have fun!

I have created a freebie for you...everything you will need to make this marvelous story come to life and make science simple! The kids will find that even though it might be sour...science sure is sweet!
George's Marvelous Medicine Freebie HERE
Science is marvelous!


We LAVA Science!

For the next two days...check out my TPT STORE for 28% off of EVERYTHING! Don't forget to use Code: Start16 at the check out! Time to be inspired to add some science into your school day!

Here is some motivation...We finished up our rock unit...FOSS Pebbles, Sand, and Silt with volcanoes. We focused on labeling our pictures just like non-fiction books...learning to listen for facts from our non-fiction books....and to connect volcanoes to rocks. Rocks are made because of volcanoes such as basalt, obsidian, and pumice. We learned the difference between lava and magma...and that a volcanologist is a scientist who studies volcanoes! Check out our simple science lesson!

1. We wrote what we already know about volcanoes...
2. We read a fun volcano story and tied it into our pop up book (EPIC books...Volcanoes)
A look at the book we use with our EPIC book...and what you would need to make science simple. 
3. I give them a sticky note to write one thing they learned about volcanoes to add to our chart...
Teaching kiddos text features and writing non-fiction is a great way to tie in language arts into science!

4. On trays...while my students are watching the short Pixar Film, Lava, I set out a tray with two cups...one with baking soda and soap...and one with red dyed vinegar.

Here is the cute...and I mean cute...video...
5. We then talk about the difference between magma and lava. Then...one...two...three...we erupt a volcano!
Volcano fun! Easy clean up, too!

6. Finally, we watch a real volcano erupt and follow it up with drawing and labeling a volcano which we add to our bulletin board...We Lava Science!


Christmas and Winter STEM Wishlist

What an exciting time of year. It is time to add some items to your Christmas Wish list! For two days TPT is holding a sale for you to save big this holiday season! This means a SITEWIDE SALE on Monday and Tuesday! These amazing sales don't happen very often, so it's no surprise that we all ge a little excited when it does happen! For a great reason...EVERYTHING in my store is 28% off! Don't forget to use the code SMILE at checkout!

The kids are ready for ways to add joy and holiday cheer to your classroom...but keep the academics alive! Why not try some great STEM activities to do just that!

 Why not add some simple science activities that get your students actively engaged. Here is how to  make STEM simple by easy activities with simple materials...

Kids love penguins! How about creating a penguin ice skating rink...a penguin playground...or marshmallow tower for penguin????

STEM Penguin Winter Antics Pack on TPT
Quick and easy STEM stations such as gumdrop chimney...treats for Santa table...and packaging presents...

STEM Christmas Stations on TPT

Another pack I use each year with my 5th graders is the Holiday Science pack filled with activities that include mixtures and solutions because that is the FOSS unit I am working on. I try to keep up with my road map by adding some activities that can really fit both needs!

If your looking for other ways to continue the winter...Christmas...holiday science scene...I also gave my teachers the Gingerbread STEM Pack which I love to do with my students after Christmas because it breaks up the winter blahs!  Try this quick and easy STEM pack...

My new pack I made last year for my classroom teachers that incorporates reading, writing, math, and science really incorporates each letter in S...T...E...M! Winter/Christmas STEM Stations that include candy...cookies...mittens and more!


Teaching Weather and Climate With M&M's

Some of my most challenging students are in second grade right now. With that being said...I have a very dry weather unit I need to teach. Granted FOSS has some great hands-on activities, but that only lasts so long and I have an hour with 5 different second grade classrooms!

I stumbled upon an idea for how to use M&M's to teach weather and climate. I created my own sheet and focused on primary vocabulary words...meteorologist...forecast...weather...and climate. I added assessments of the key vocabulary and a little art project!
Forecasting the weather can be fun! Connecting it with math is even better!

I love how the kids get so excited! The understanding of the vocabulary is spot on! Not going to lie...candy sure helps them make connections!
Understanding Climate vs. Weather can be fun! Check out this new pack on TPT!
Just a few of my favorites before we put them into a book for their classroom!


Simple Machines...Rube Goldberg...and Simple Science

To make science simple...all you need is a bag of goodies per table.

**I added 8 Jenga blocks, a paper towel tube , a little car, a bull's eye, a plastic figure, and a marble.

I asked my students to see if they could use all of the supplies to make the plastic figure land on the bull's eye on the floor. This a simple, yet easy way for your students to work together to problem solve!

I love to show this video to get them thinking...

I share with them what a Rube is... a contraption, invention, device, or apparatus that is deliberately over-engineered or overdone to perform a very simple task in a very complicated way usually with a chain reaction.

There you have it...Simple science! Try it in your school yard! For more ideas, check out my Rube Goldberg Engineering Pack on TPT! Tons of great engineering ideas to make science easier!

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