I don't know about you but I LOVE teaching Science! I don't know what's more fun: teaching science or watching kids as they explore and learn through Science. For me, it's both!
I just wish I had more time to teach more Science. There is so much curriculum to cover in a year! A few years ago, I decided that I would create a Scientist for a Day for my second graders. This way, I could get more Science learning in throughout the year and kids could have more hands on experience. A big plus to this, is that students actually present their experiments so this is also excellent for students to practice their public speaking.
First, I taught the students about the Scientific Process. I carried on my usual lessons as part of the curriculum such as Properties of Matter or Animal Lifecycles. That way students could see the Scientific Process in action before they take on making their own presentations.
I could not believe how excited they were to do their own experiments!! Here's the deal. I don't send home "make work" projects for kids. Parents want to be part of their child's education but they don't want endless hours of prep. (Who does?) My Scientist for a Day is as easy way for parents to have fun helping their children choose a science experiment, practice it and then come to school and present it for their peers. Parents read the letter I have included on the details and sign the form and return it to the teacher with their experiment idea. Students can get experiment ideas from books or the internet. I let parents know if the idea was already chosen because it defeats the purpose of the hypothesis if a student has seen it before! Students sign up for a topic and a date and viola!
On the day BEFORE the experiment, students bring in the filled in experiment sheet (top half) for me to copy for classmates. When the experiment is shared aloud by the student they tell the class:
1. The experiment name.
2. Materials used
4. Possible predictions
Classmates then predict (hypothesize) what will happen. It is so much FUN! watching and listening to the kids predict.
Then the student performs the experiment and the rest of the class writes what happened and draws a picture. The scientist often gets questions and everyone wants to try it too!
There is a teacher assessment that I fill out and send home with the students that day. Parents love to know how their child did that day. There is also a peer assessment if you would like to do peer assessment.
I love how I can cover my own Science curriculum and then let the students do more and more Science! Oral language is a big part of our curriculum so the students are definitely practicing that too!
If you are interested in my NO PREP Science, you can check it out here: