Seeds, Spores, and Cones

Good Afternoon Everyone! As a class we are studying plants and their seeds. If your child finds any type of native species seeds around your town, our class would love to have them. Our class is looking for seeds, cones, and spores. Examples include acorns, sunflower seeds, pine cones, maple seeds, and fern spores. Please try to send seeds to class in a ziploc bag. We will be collecting seeds all week! Have a great night.

STEM CLUB: Water Filters

In our after school STEM Club, students have been working to construct water filters. Their objective is to build the least expensive (from commonly available parts) water filter, that cleans the water the best, and the quickest.

Students purchase materials and evaluate their possible scores, given how much money they spent, using a cost analysis rubric. Next, they test their materials to see what works best and redesign their filters if needed.

The water is judged on color, clarity, smell, and particles.

Students have done an amazing job designing, creating, and testing their filters!

Testing a water filter with gravel.
A gravel based water filter.
Charcoal water filter.
Charcoal based water filter.
Testing a water filter.
Testing a filter.

Phase Changes in a Chemistry Lab

Last week, we prepared for our upcoming unit in chemistry by performing an experiment with dry ice.  Students observed Mr. Thompson’s demonstration of  how dry ice is frozen carbon dioxide that happens to sublimate.  A unique phase change for our class to observe and one that was a lot fun!

Sublimation with dry ice.
Students popping soap bubbles that contained trapped CO2 from  the dry ice sublimation.
Students popping soap bubbles that contained trapped CO2 from  the dry ice sublimation.

Students popping soap bubbles that contained trapped CO2 from  the dry ice sublimation.

The Scientific Method

Students in both classes are learning how to use the scientific method to perform an experiment.  For this lesson, students focused on the hydrogen bond of water and how it related to the cohesion and surface tension of water.  Students were given materials (an eyedropper, coins, cup, and water) and challenged to design an experiment.  They had to list the hypothesis, materials, steps, results, and conclusion.

Every student did a great job rising to the challenge!

Save Wilmer the Worm!

For a quick STEM activity, students were asked to save a worm whose boat (cup) had capsized, trapping the worm on top of the overturned boat and his life vest (life saver candy) under the boat.  The students worked in teams to devise a plan to retrieve the life vest and place it on the worm without the worm falling off the cup.  The other constraint was that students could only use one hand, and must do all of this with one toothpick per team member.  There was no poking Wilbur the Worm, as he would surely perish! 

3D Shapes and Bernoulli’s Principle

In math class we used windbags to create three dimensional shapes.  However, before we could use the windbags we had to decide on the best way to inflate them.  We estimated it would take between 200 and 300 large breaths of air to fill a big, therefore we needed an easier way.    After a quick demonstration of Bernoulli’s Principle we discovered a fun and quick way to fill our windbags!

Windbag math and science! Windbag math and science! Windbag math and science! Windbag math and science! Windbag math and science! Windbag math and science! Windbag math and science! Windbag math and science! Windbag math and science! Windbag math and science! Windbag math and science! Windbag math and science! Windbag math and science! Windbag math and science! Windbag math and science! Windbag math and science! Windbag math and science! Windbag math and science!