KinderGals: Developing the Scientific Method with Weekly Science Box: Easy Science Experiments!

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Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Developing the Scientific Method with Weekly Science Box: Easy Science Experiments!

If you didn’t read yesterdays post, STOP…..back up and read it first!  So here it is! Here’s what was in the box this week. The Mad Science Boxes had all the needed supplies to conduct the Gummy Bear experiment.
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We want to teach our kids how “scientists really do it” using the scientific method. We made this anchor chart which we later posted in our room, but we also converted it to a smart board slide to use during our lessons.  As we introduced each part of the scientific method over the course of several mini lessons, we revealed that part of the anchor chart. Once the chart was fully revealed, we posted it in the room for future use.
Day 1
  • First, we named the problem in the form of a question: What happens to Gummy Bears when you put them in liquids?
  • Then, we invited each child to use words and/or pictures to show what they thought would happen. They made an hypothesis.
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Day 2:
  • We conducted the experiment. I guess you could do the experiment while the kids watch,  they wouldn’t have been as well behaved if they were just watching!
  • CAUTION: Don’t, use these cups!!!!! I found these bathroom cups, CHEAP at Target.  All went well until the next day when we came in! The cups had leaked EVERYWHERE!!!
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Here’s the experiment card the kids used to read each step. We want our kids to have authentic practice with nonfiction text. We want them to see that we read for a purpose. We have many reluctant readers, so it is our job to find ways to show them how reading is sooo important, beneficial, and fun!
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Day 3:
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  • Observe. What is happening?  We encouraged our kids to talk about their observations. They sometimes have difficulty getting their words and thoughts on paper, so we spend lots of time just talking!After a lot of discussion, then we went to the paper to record.
  • Now, here’s a confession.  I did this experiment 3 times at home. I was trying to figure out how we could have the kids graph their data. So I kept doing the experiment, watching what happened and thinking what we could do. The gummy bear in the vinegar always disappeared by the end of the first day, the one in water was smaller, and the one in the baking soda water was the same or somewhat larger. This continued with the water one getting smaller and the baking soda one staying about the same. This.same.thing.happened.every.single.time!!!  THEN, when we did it at school we didn’t have the same results!!! At school, all 3 bears increased in size. WHAT!?!?!?! My husband is an engineer and quite smart about science so I called him in a little bit of a panic. He said it could be that different brands of gummy bears are made differently, but for whatever reason, this is what science is all about. So, we are setting up just one experiment (since we dumped the others) and seeing what happens over 5 days as the graph requires.
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Once we have gone the full five days, we will complete our graph….
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And write our conclusion.  
We already have the science boxes ready for this week. Next week, we will share that experiment with you.
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This is the unit that we are using to teach the scientific method. (It has the gummy bear experiment.)
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