|The Science Workshop||
This week, two under graduate students from the Curtin Science Outreach program visited our Year 6B students. This program is committed to providing opportunities for future scientists and engineers, as well as their educators - encouraging them to learn new skills, meet like-minded people and spark excitement for science and engineering. Jessica and Brad presented an activity that incorporated simple circuits using electric snap on kits.
The children were required to meet a challenge by imagining they were stranded in the outback: How would they alert rescuers? How would they keep cool in the heat? And what would they use for light in the pitch black of night? Using the snap on kits, the students were able to successfully create all three devices and complete the challenge.
Here are a few photos of the experience.
Friday, 2nd March, was Clean up Australia Day for schools. After registering on the Clean Up Australia website, Mrs Cogger received a kit including bags, gloves, information and promotional materials. The Schools Clean Up Day is a fun and engaging way to teach young Australians about the responsible disposal of rubbish, resource recovery and the repercussions of rubbish dumped irresponsibly in the local environment.
Students from Kindy to Year 6 were allocated an area, on the school grounds, to clean up. Everyone put on their gloves, or used the special robot arms, to pick up all the litter in their area.
To make the Clean Up Australia a relevant learning experience for our students, Mrs Cogger also offered learning experiences about waste management and recycling to the students in Years 1-6. Here is snapshot of our learning this week.
The Year One students learned about the different bins and what can be placed in them. We did a card sorting activity and discussed which waste goes into the yellow lid bin, green bin, a compost bin and a worm farm.
The Year Two students brought their lunch boxes into Science and we made our own graph of the waste we found. We concluded that the students at St Emilie's are very careful at packing 'waste free' lunches.
The Year Three students examined the findings from the Year Two lunches and then discussed the best place to dispose of the waste - recycling, worm farm, compost or general waste.
The Year Four and Fives students participated in a Science for Human Endeavour role play activity. We learned what the term 'marine debris' means. The students were placed into teams and each team had to imagine how they could manage the marine debris issue depending on their role in the community. The roles were - boatowners, homeowners, beachgoers, the manager of a factory and the manager of a waste facility.
The Year Six students investigated primary and secondary batteries. Mrs Cogger set up several 'battery stations' around the room. The students had to investigate the different batteries, draw a detailed diagram of the battery and then discuss the pros and cons of that particular battery.
Don't forget that here at St Emilie's we have a battery recycling bin in the admin/reception.
at At the conclusion of our Clean Up Australia Day the MacKillop house group gathered together for a photo. As you can see we are very effective at St Emilie's at using minimal waste. This can be attributed to the powerful message being taught in our Mappen Sustainability topic and through Science lessons that allow student participation and discussion about waste management. Also, Mr Cogger likes to keep on top of waste management and is quick to remove any unsightly messes he sees.
Mrs Cogger is thinking ahead to Clean Up Australia Day 2019 and her ideas are that it may be a great idea to go 'offsite' in 2019 and clean up a local park like Cromarty Gardens.
Camouflage Capers with 1G
Can you find the invertebrates in the bushland litter?
Today the Year 1G students made their own invertebrates. Then we made a trip to the school bushland to collect litter, like, Banksia cones, bark, leaves, twigs etc. The students arranged their litter in trays and then carefully 'hid' or 'camouflaged' their invertebrate. Then we all went on a 'gallery tour' with our hands tucked neatly behind our back so as to not interfere with the displays. Some of the vertebrates were extremely well camouflaged.
See if you can spot them in the images below?
2B and 3B have had a very productive week planting this years crop in our school veggie garden. This week we’ve put in carrots, broad beans and beetroot. Thank you to all the parents who volunteered their time to help the students and Mrs Cogger. Thanks too to Mr Cogger for preparing the garden beds in readiness for the planting project. Here are a few photos of our happy planting day! Stay tuned 2G and 3G are planting next week!
The National Science Week theme for 2014 provided an excellent opportunity to integrate Science with Health at St Emilie's. Through a variety of relevant and challenging science investigations students learned where our food products come from and how healthy eating habits and food choices contribute to a healthy lifestyle. Students in year K to 6 participated in a week-long extravaganza of extra science and health activities prepared by Science Learning Area Coordinator. The class teachers further facilitated learning by integrating the activities into the class program. This enhanced the profile of the Science learning area throughout Science Week and encouraged the class teachers to become more informed and aware of the 2014 topic - Science Feeding the World. To conclude our Science Week we held an expo in the school hall to showcase our findings about our food supply and other science related experiences offered to the students at St Emilie's.
The verbal feedback from parents who attended the expo on Tuesday evening was highly complimentary about the range and variety of science learning experiences. Further to this several parents emailed through positive feedback about the science program offered at St Emilie's. Also just seeing the students animated faces and their delight at sharing their work and learning with their parents is delightful in itself.
The year 5 students looked at the Australian grain industry, firstly through a mapping activity to identify where grains are grown in Australia, then sorting a tub of cereal and pulse grains and finally growing their own crops in small trays. The PP and year 2 classes looked at 'What's in your lunchbox?' and did many sharing activities together. The PP also looked at dairy farms and set up a farmers market. Year 6 students investigated wind turbines and viewed some youtube clips of wind farms in Sri Lanka. The students did a wind power challenge to see if they could construct their own wind turbine to lift a small plastic cup to bench height. We had a visit from Josh Richards - Mars One candidate. He shared his dreams for the habitat that will be set up on Mars in 2025. This led to many ongoing class activities. The year 6 students investigated how to create a healthy menu for astronauts travelling to Mars by using the 'ISS daily menu food list'. This also led to the students setting up their own hydroponics systems and managing these as the astronauts on Mars will be growing their own food this way. Year 2 learnt about the wheat industry by growing their own grass heads.
SERCUL - South Eastern Regional Centre for Urban Landcare set up a bush tucker display at our Science Expo on 16 Sept. SERCUL offer support for environmental projects in the local region and are a great source of advice about managing our school bushland. UCB - Urban Bushland Council.- we consult with UBC about our bushland management program and one of their representatives Cath Cooper visits the school on a regular basis to work with our science inquiry group.
I attended the Primary Science Conference WA in March this year and found out more on native Australian bees. With resource ideas provided by the presenter the year 3 students made 'bee motels' to place in the school bushland to create habitats for bees. This led to further class learning about sugar bag honey in indigenous society.
On the 14th of August Mr Sayer, came to St Emilie’s to do a few experiments for year 6G. It was an amazing experience watching him teaching us about force in a fun way. We got to see Mr Sayer drop a cup with a hole in it and when it was falling, the water stopped coming out of the hole.
We also watched a tin in the staffroom. The boiling water inside the tin and the cold water poured over the tin helped it shrink. We also watched when Mr Sayer tried to shrink a milo tin but it did not end up working. “It did not work because it was corrugated” said Jace.
The whole thing was mind blowing and amazing. “It made me so interested to find out what else Mr Sayer has in store,” said Kat. All of 6G think this has been the best science lesson ever. We would like to thank you Mrs Cogger and Mr Sayer for this amazing experience and we hope we can have more of these.
There is a movie below of the can crushing investigation.
by Kaden and Madison
Ten of our year 5 science inquiry students spent Friday morning in St Emilie's Bushland with Cath Cooper from Urban Bushland Council WA learning about the different species of native plants. The students were highly motivated following Cath as we toured our bushland recording important details about the species. The students will be using their findings to create an 'eco-gram'. The eco-gram will feature in the parent presentation morning later on this year. Cath has continued to bond with us and our students here at St Emilie's. She is a valued resource about the conservation of our bushland and highly knowledgeable about flora and fauna. Cath will be visiting on several occasions this semester to work with the year 5 science inquiry group.
While we are talking about the bushland I have some amazing news to share! One of the parents in PP has observed an owl in the bushland. Yes - an OWL!! Both Mr Cogger and I have spotted the owl in the trees this week. This is very exciting as it shows that the health of the bushland is improving enough to encourage native fauna to return. I've done some research on the internet about common owls in the south west of WA and I think it is a Southern Boobook Owl.
Stayed tuned for more on our Wise Eyed Owl!
"It's not what the world holds for you. It's what you bring to it".
This term we had a visit from Mick Doyle from Science Alive. Mick entertained us with his very energetic show. Below are some of the activities Mick shared with us.
Every year the students ask about when we are going to 'blow something up?' Well for the first time in the history of the St Emilie's science program the students got to see their first explosion. Here is a movie of the experience!!
Thanks Science Alive for a wonderful incursion.
It was time again for the girls to go on their bird observing tour of the church and school grounds. The weather had been extremely wet and wintry and a bleak morning with heavy dew was ahead of us as we set out on our tour.
Our first bird encounter was at the big tree in the church car park. Here we found several magpies and a mud lark searching the damp soil for food. As moved to the bush area in front of the hall we found an Australian Raven collecting food for it's nest.
As we moved into the St Emilie's Bushland we could hear a Laughing Dove but as our efforts to find him were to no avail. What did entertain us though was a Red Capped Parrot causally sunning himself in the early morning light at the top of one of the tallest trees.
Here are some images of the girls enjoying their morning and their efforts to photograph the birds.
Kerrie is a primary science specialist teacher in Perth Australia. She has a passion for providing experiences to open up young students inquiring minds to the world in which they live.