March 22

Sound

Fourth grade scientists investigated sound. We used tuning forks to feel and hear vibrations. Then we struck the tuning forks and held them on lab tables. The volume of the sound increased, but we could really hear the sound when we placed our ears on the tables. Sound waves (unlike light waves) need to travel through a medium such as a solid, liquid, or gas. The sound waves move through each of these mediums by vibrating the molecules in the matter. The molecules in solids are packed very tightly. The spacing of the molecules enables sound to travel much faster through a solid than a gas (air).



In our next investigation, I swung air tubes. As air spiraled through the tubes, we heard sound. The sound has a higher pitch the faster the tube moves. If the opening is covered preventing air to enter the tube, sound stops. We will each have a chance to use these in our next lab. Click here to learn more.

We wrapped string around our fingers that was attached to a spoon or a hanger. As we hit the objects against different materials around the lab, the sound waves traveled up the string into our ears with surprising results.



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March 20

Conference

I had a great time being a student at the National Science Teachers Conference. My favorite session was hosted by the Bug Chicks. I learned more about choosing and caring for arthropods in the classroom. Click here to meet these fun scientists who LOVE bugs!

I think we need a millipede in the lab!

I plan to purchase some silkworms, so we can watch them go through metamorphosis.

Some of the fun items I purchased for the lab.

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March 7

Solutions

When you add some solids to water, they dissolve and seem to disappear. But other solids sink to the bottom and can still be seen and separated from the water. Why?  Click here to watch the video that introduced this lab.

My first grade chemists continued their study of matter by pouring salt, pepper, jello, flour, sugar, and oats in water to determine if they would make a suspension or a solution. We completed a lab report as we worked.

This is a great lab to extend at home. Try mixing other solids and liquids that you have in your pantry or refrigerator with water. Did you make a solution or a suspension?



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March 6

Fossils

My kindergarten scientists are studying dinosaurs, rocks, and fossils.


We created fossils in lab. A dinosaur dies in the mud.

An imprint is left as it decomposes.


It is covered by layers of sediments and water that harden over time.


Paleontologists work slowly and carefully to uncover the fossil.

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March 6

Parachutes

Fourth graders are studying drag. I asked Mrs. Sheets and Mr. Swegman to use my running parachutes in PE, so that my scientists could feel the power of this force. They felt a difference running into the wind and with the wind too.






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