Saturday, April 1, 2017

What do scientists do?

We finished up our unit on natural resources (wood and paper) by studying what scientists do to learn more about something. We talked about the importance of asking questions, making predictions, using tools, observing, and discussing results. Here are some photos of a few investigations we did to help learn these skills!

First, we predicted what would happen if we put a drop of water on two different types of wood, and recorded our prediction in our science journals. Would the water sit on top, or soak in? The little scientists were very careful and observant during this process. It definitely takes fine motor skills to drop one or two drops on the wood.

A lot of kids wanted to continue using the water and droppers during choice time, to see if water soaks into other items!

Next, we wanted to determine if the wood would sink or float in water. It was pretty evenly split between those who thought it would sink and those who thought it would float.

Turns out it floats!

Our last challenge was to see if we could get the pieces of wood to sink, using only paperclips and rubberbands. I let the kids give ideas for how they thought this could happen, and they ultimately ended up stacking paperclips onto the wood pieces and using rubberbands to secure it. 

The scientists were very patient and exact with their calculations - a wood that only sunk partially on one side didn't count as fully sinking, so they had to go back and add more paperclips. There was also some great teamwork going on!

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