Spring SAVY 2017, Day 1- Environmental Explorations: Dig It!
It was so nice meeting your children and getting to know them on our first Spring SAVY day together. We began our morning talking about what our young scientists already knew about what scientists are, and what they do. We recorded our prior knowledge on a chart. Then, I read a book called What is a Scientist? and we expanded our concept of a scientist on our wall chart. Next, students were given their very own “lab coats” (t-shirts) and they were thrilled to be able to customize their lab coats with t-shirt markers. They proudly donned their lab coats for the rest of the morning.
Next, I begin teaching students about the Scientific Process as they received their very own Science Journals. They, again, were excited to receive another item that scientists use as they wrote their first entry in their journals. Students wrote their title page in their journal, drew a picture of themselves as a scientist, and then glued their first scientific reference, The Scientific Wheel of Reasoning and Investigation, in their journals. We began referring to the first two steps today, which are: Make Observations and Ask Questions. We then had a discussion of what the concept of change is, and students offered ideas such as seasons, and moving from one house to another.
Now, we were ready for our first investigation! We put our warm outer clothes on, and with our journals and pencils in hand, trekked outside to observe, infer, and investigate evidence of change in our outside environment (we had already defined what environment meant). Students were so excited to find evidence of change outside. I invited students to share their findings with the group, and so it was so wonderful to hear a student cry out, “Over here, I found change.” Students found changes in the trees, the grass, the ground, park benches (inferred), and all sorts of things. Then when I felt the wind pick up, I asked students to stop and tell me what they felt on their faces. They joyfully said, the wind and someone said, “The wind changes”. This statement led was a springboard for our last activity for the day, which would be an experiment with wind energy.
After heading back into the classroom and recording our findings on change in the outside environment, students did their first experiment with wind energy. They each received a feather, and blue tape, and were off to measure how far the feathers would go with different levels of wind, as provided by their own mouths! They were surprised to notice how powerful their wind energy was. Next week, we will further investigate wind energy and other forms of natural resources. We will also begin learning about and considering the implications and consequences of human actions on the natural resources. I can’t wait! If you get a chance this week, please discuss with your student some things you would like to investigate if you were a scientist, and talk to them a bit about how you might go about conducting your investigations. Thank you! I am excited to see the students next Saturday!
P.S. Two students didn’t get their SAVY Swag at the end of our first class day. It is a really warm, red SAVY blanket. I want to make sure everyone has received their Swag gift, so please be sure and let me know at arrival next week if your student did not receive one so that I can have it ready for you.