W is for many fun words, like wheels, worms, wagons, watermelon, and water. But I think the students are feeling the pull away from classroom time, towards summer, and nothing was really 'emergent' on any topics this week. "When are we going to get to 'z' and go to the zoo?" gets asked a lot. The more interesting theme was numerous mentions of how much they enjoyed the volcano and when were we going to do another science experiment. Therefore, today we did some water science. Standing in our science square, the students examined a vessel of water.
The students discussed many of the properties of water, where it is found, and the many ways water is needed. Everyone enjoyed experiencing the reflective quality of water and how it distorts images. We could have ended the project here because so much beautiful sharing and learning was occurred. But that would have been slightly anticlimactic. We looked at oil and discussed its properties. Everyone said it was important for cooking, except Jacob who said, "Cars need oil," "No, Jacob," Yehuda replied. "You mean gas. Cars need gasoline, not oil." I explained that cars need both. [Jacob, thanks for the reminder that I need to get the oil changed in my van.] Each student got a cup with a small amount of oil. They selected a food coloring bottle and added 3 drops to their oil. (Most were very exact in their drops. But limiting Naomi's amount of color is like robbing Monet of his brushes.)
The students gently stirred the color and oil. Then it was time for the magic. Using a pipette, the students dropped their solutions into the water.
The colors slowly disperse, in a very beautiful way.
As Audrey announced to the Tiny Tots, "We did a science experiment, but in real life, it was actually real magic!" We used the remaining oil and food dye to make art. I added a little water to their cups and they dropped the solution onto paper.
The squeezing is great for artistic fun, fine motor coordination, and muscular development in pincher fingers.
The students had loads of fun and the results were beautiful!
V week needed the classic vinegar and baking soda volcano experience. When I set it up, almost everyone already knew what would happen.
There was a discussion over whether vinegar or water is the 'secret' ingredient, so we compared the smells of the two substances and all agreed vinegar was the key.
Then they took turns pouring and marveling at the eruption.
Efforts to make sand volcanoes erupt were less successful.
Sand play is still fun, even without the eruption.