Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Weird Science Night

One of the things I love about being part of a home school co-op is having the opportunity to do 'group' learning activities that we might not be able to do at home with only 3 students. In the co-op setting we can practice persentations, public speaking, team sports, and other activities. But just last month we were able to participate in a "Weird Science Night" at our co-op!  Each kid got to choose a scientist to learn about, dress up as, and do an experiment or research project about.

Of course, Jefferson choose to do something Myth*busters related!  He has been obsessively watching that show on net*flix every chance he gets. I love how it stretches his imagination as to what he can figure out if he wants to set his mind to it - those guys never give up on a hypothesis! It always amazes me how my kids can be so self motivated IF they are interested in their subject matter. For his science project, Jefferson basically took a MB kit (he got for his bday in Sept) and ran through the experiments (all related to AIR PRESSURE) himself. Then he used his mad glog*ster skills (taught to him by his wonderful Mrs. Third Grade Teacher a few years back) and started slapping out his "lab write-up" pages on MB designed pages (that HE put together - glog*ster is kinda like an online scrapbooking or blogging arena). He poured every minute of his school day into it for 4 days while I ran around like a chicken with my head cut off trying to get display boards, display board decor, help the 3rd & kindergartener with their projects, and cater to Jefferson's demandingness (he hasn't quite adjusted yet to NOT being the only child - sheesh!).

I was really thrilled with his effort, his hard work, and his end product! He dressed up like Adam Savage to show it off at Weird Science Night (and I'm happy to say that although he's growing like a weed - I still had to draw his beard onto his face - lol!).

Reagan (3rd gr) took a different approach to her science project, choosing to build on the science that we were already studying this year. Since we have been focusing on ornithology for weeks, she choose to dress up as John James Audubon, a famous naturalist and artist known for his work with American birds. [We later visited his early American home in PA] She added her journaling pages to her display and added different 'habitat' scenes as a background for her display board. I took her to the library to do some more research on Audubon and she decided to try to copy one of his painted birds. The green parakeet at the top of her display (as well as the flamingo in the frame) is the beautiful result!

And as usual, Adam wanted to participate in all the science hooplah that was going on around the house.  So we turned him into Archimedes since that's what was fresh on my mind from Jefferson's history studies and we could make some of his concepts understandable to a kindergarden kid. We tried an experiment with aluminum foil to show how density affects how objects float. It didn't work well but he was super excited about his foil boat - lol! We tied a string onto his display board to show that the shortest distance between two points in a straight line. And he colored, traced, cut & paste bits & pieces to tell others about this ancient Greek. Although he wasn't too thrilled with wearing his adorable toga, he had a fun time & was so happy with all the work he did on his first science project!

What a fun & interesting time the kids had! They still pull out their display boards to enjoy their work and would love to do this all again!