Thursday, June 22, 2017

2016/2017 Science Year in Review


2016/2017 Science Year Review


Another great year is completed.  This year I saw lots of growth in the students.  This is my 3rd year offering science classes in my community.  Students come to my home for classes.  It is amazing to see the growth in their scientific thinking.

Our main class is the Creating and Conducting Investigation class.  This was the first year I offered it up to 7th grade. Our theme for the year was Forces and Motion.  Students investigated gravitational potential energy, balanced and unbalanced forces, The Laws of Energy, Conservation of Energy, simple machines, and much more.  They wrote their own investigations on incline planes and helped create investigations as a class.  The final project was to create an original science fair project.  Projects are then displayed at the Science Fair Poster Celebration.

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Exploring-Gravitational-Potential-Energy-and-Work-Marble-Roller-Coasters-2263572

I also offered STEM Classes and monthly explorations.  Exploring Dry Ice is always a blast.  Students had a great time learning about Cartesian Divers and creating their own.  Students were also challenged to create a bridge that could hold 100 pennies.  These classes focus on the engineering design process.  We emphasize using failures as learning experiences to guide us to solutions.


 I chaired the Siebert Elementary School Science Fair again this year.  I am starting to lose count as to how many years I have done this.  I think 5.  I love it.  We had over 70 projects.  The students always impress.  We have fabulous judges.  The support from the school and families is wonderful.  We really focus on students not only performing a science fair project, but designing the project as well.  This creates more unique projects and helps students design projects that fit their interests.  This year’s science fair workshop was all about bottle flipping.  Bottle flipping is banned at the school, but for this night the principal allowed it.  Investigating bottle flipping was inexpensive and exciting for the students.  The night of the fair didn’t disappoint. 


My year ended with The Science Fair Poster Celebration.  This is put on through Kimberly Scott Science.  All students in my Creating and Conducting Investigation class participate as well as others from the community.  I also offered a family science fair workshop about bottle flipping to help students prepare for creating their projects.  This is a celebration of all things science.  We don’t give out places, but all the students want me to score their projects.  We had a 6 foot high trebuchet.  It couldn’t get it into the classroom, but we left it in the entry way for students to see.  We also had a tornado, earth quake investigation, plants, water wheel, and more.  Projects were well thought out and age appropriate.  It was a great end to the school year.

Now it is time to plan for next year.  I always start with an open house.  This year I will be teaching a “You Be the Chemist Challenge Class.”  Students will be learning all things chemistry and preparing for the “You Be the Chemist Challenge.”  Students can also enroll in Kitchen Chemistry and monthly STEM Explorations.  I am excited that I am offering programs outside of my home.  Over the summer I will be provided programs for a local day camp.  Bring on inertia challenges, bubble fun, and Mentos/Diet Coke Geysers.

To find lessons that I used go to Kimberly Scott Science on TeachersPayTeachers.com.