Hands-on Science Units

by Mrs. Nilsen on February 14th, 2014

Weekly Science News 2/10 - 2/14

While I've been focusing on the Science Fair a lot in my communications on here, we've actually been studying other units as well while we're preparing for the fair.  Every Mon - Thurs. in class, students are learning about some other major science topic.  Here's a peek at what we've been up to.

6th Grade - Solar System and beyond!

When we aren't busy writing our Science Fair papers, studying the Solar System and more is underway in 6th grade!  Take a look at us building a living model in our classroom (with our bodies!) below.  Another fantasitc lesson we do this unit is to model the 8 planets to scale by size and distance from the sun.  From the planets, to asteriods, from ancient models of an Earth-centered solar system, to new discovers being made today - this unit is one of my absolute favorite units to teach! I'll try to let the pictures speak for themselves in our weekly news.  If I'm not careful, I can really geek out and tell you more about the Solar System than you ever want to know.  Be sure to ask your student something they've learned thus far!

7th Grade - Cells and Genetics

The 7th grade class is diving into a mixture of a genetics/cellular processes unit.  A highlight of this unit is our Edible Cell-O-Bration project.  It's a yummy way to learn about the tiny building blocks of life!  Over the course of this unit we will also look deeper into our cells all the way to our DNA.  We're learning fun terminology (chromosomes, genes, Adenine, Thymine, etc.) and the differences on a cellular and genetic level between sexual and asexual reproduction.  Talking about cells and DNA is always a fun topic and students are pretty fascinated with these things that happen that we can't even see with our eyes. 

8th Grade - Solar System

My 8th grade birds, excuse me, students have been studying Darwin and his theory of Natural Selection.  We've been defining Evolution and the amazing observations Darwin made during his journey on the H.M.S. Beagle.  You can see them below trying to eat with different beak  structures.  Sadly, on the the fittest survived.  This particular group of 8th graders asks such good questions!  During this unit we also look at geologic time, taxonomy, continental drift, and some other facinating ideas in the scientific world that all play a role in how species evolve and change over long periods of time.

Posted in Science Updates    Tagged with Hands-on, pictures, Demostrations


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