Students did a great job weathering the midyear exams, I was very proud of how they all took the experience seriously and worked very hard to demonstrate their knowledge.
Back in action this week with Natual Science and Engineering testing material properties, specifically carbon and it’s ability to be a resistor. Before we started measuring resistance we had to look at the materials each art pencil was made of (comparing the percentage of clay vs. graphite)
Somehow the month of October has come and gone!
Today we are working on a new build, “Building a Battery from Everyday Objects” Students prepped one of the materials for this build recently, and we discussed the process and the observations that they made during the process. These qualitative observations will then lead into our discussion of chemical reactions.
Then after whiteboarding their observations we created a group document in Google Docs, allowing students to go back and reflect on observations that they either missed or failed to initially document.
After building the lightbulb using a carbon filament, we read about his experiments to enhance the ability of platinum to withstand high temperatures needed for incandescence.
It was an article that had difficult and unfamiliar vocabulary, so as a class we broke it down in the following way:
- Identified vocabulary that was unfamiliar, entered the words into a Google form
- Researched “top 30” words as identified by the classes using a Lib Guide created by WHS Library
- Created a custom glossary for the article
- Divided 6 key paragraphs and re-wrote them in small groups using the student created glossary
- Incorporated feedback on rough drafts through shared Google Doc
- Presented the “before” and “after” results
Students did a great job decoding the work and (hopefully) learned the value of working in groups when trying to read a difficult text.
I’m a visual thinker – so making sketches helps me think and make greater connections than just words alone. Had a bit of quiet time to think about the activities that we will start the year with for the new 9th-grade science course ‘Natural Science and Engineering’, A hands-on course that will explore the ideas about science through building and discovery, needless to say, I’m really excited!