Division 5 has been a hotbed of scientific exploration for the last few weeks. After spending some time learning about the scientific method each student was given the task of researching an experiment that he or she would like to conduct for the rest of the class. The only parameters were to keep it simple, demonstrate the scientific method, and be able to talk about the science behind what happened. Oh, they were also asked to try and avoid causing any lasting damage to the classroom. To that end we did have to go outside to conduct a few of them! I have been over-the-moon thrilled at what has been shared so far. I am kicking myself for not taking pictures of each and every one! My students have demonstrated surface tension on water, creating gases from liquids and solids, magnetic forces, the effects of friction, and so much more! I think the thing that I have liked the most about this, is how they are learning from each other. And it’s not just science. They are practicing and learning presentation skills and poise in front of an audience (and when things don’t always go well!). They are responding to questions and comments from their peers and they are showing pride in their accomplishments. I am excited to see the experiments that are still to come.
In addition to the experiments, each student chose a scientist to write a research report about. Together we have learned about Temple Grandin, Frederick Banting, Stephen Hawking, Alfred Nobel, and many others.
The walls of our classroom and the hall outside are lined with posters and booklets about what has been learned so far. Some of the students have chosen to share their learning with iMovies, iPad presentations, and Power Point presentations. These are hard to display, but very powerful to share during class time.