Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Testing, Testing

So, I’ve been doing this job for three weeks, and right now we’re in the second week of testing.  Which means that I’ve seen my students a total of three whole times.  Goodness!  I am so ready for this testing to be over so that I can start really digging into our material.  Of course, the testing is very important, but I won’t be sad when it’s over.  :]

Here are some things I’ve been thinking about this week.  When testing is over, I am going to spend three days doing a review of two major topics: map skills and curiosity (in science).  I’m still thinking about how to do the map skills days, but I have curiosity down.  And I’d like to share with you.  :]

Back in college we did a project where everyone created a short science experiment that had an unexpected outcome.  We had a blast coming together as a class and checking out the really awesome experiments that everyone had found.  My friend Michaela did one called Dancing Raisins, and to this day it is one of my favorites.  Kids absolutely love it. 

To do this experiment, you need ginger ale (or another clear-ish soda), raisins, and a tall clear container.  Pour the ginger ale into the container and ask the kids for their hypothesis.  Do they think the raisins will sink or float?  When you drop the raisins in, they will sink at first, but then the bubbles will attach to the wrinkles, which makes them float back up to the top.  Once they reach the top, the bubbles burst, and the cycle happens all over again.  It will keep going for quite a while—for as long as the drink is still slightly fizzy. 

With my kiddos we are going to focus on one big word: hypothesis.  We will define it and talk about what it means.  Then after the experiment, they will complete this worksheet at their seats.  The statements are cloze statements.  I will provide a word bank on the board.  I have uploaded the worksheet I am using for you guys to “borrow.”  Let me know if you do this experiment!  I’m sure your kiddos would love it, too!

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