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Tuesday, 27 January 2015

So that's how it works....

Our science unit "Hot and Cold Temperature" really has some wonderful experiments that are very 'hands-on' and 'brains-on'.  That means that the connections are made so that the students can understand how something works, why it works, and the importance of it to our everyday lives.
Case in point, the experiment on Monday was all about the properties of insulating materials, how they worked and where we might find them.  Lucky for me, all I had to do was get some leftovers just outside my backdoor, as my husband has built an insulated house for our cats so they can go outside in the winter and be snuggly warm.  

The children made 'in your head' predictions.  Which material would keep an ice cube from melting? Which material would keep hot water, hot?  The materials were:
styrofoam insulation
pink insulation
bendy silver insulation
flannette (like your pyjamas are made out of)
Arctic fleece (like you scarf or hoodie is made from)
knitted gloves
torn up paper

Each material was put into two black plastic containers, one for the ice cube experiment and one for the hot water experiment.  We did this almost first thing in the morning.  Right after lunch, we got to open the containers to see what happened.
I must confess, that I was as excited as the students as each one was opened and the baggies with ice cubes and hot water revealed.  We were half way through the experiment when I remembered to take a couple snap shots!
(Here's my beautiful assistant for the ice cube part!)
What would your predictions be?  What part of the experiment didn't work for us and why?  What 'big idea' can we say that we learned by trying this?  For the answers, ask you child!

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