Last night we had a pretty good turnout for the 3-5 Curriculum Night. I had some science activities in my room that were simple enough to allow anyone to simply read the instructions and do it independently. Of the five, four of them were activities that have already been done. The fifth involved the properties of light and we will cover that in December.
The students came in and did the following warm-up. Now that notes are out of the way, I am able to have them apply what they know. As I had mentioned before, the definitions themselves are not likely to be actual test questions but rather answers. In other words, instead of getting a question asking, "Which of the following refers to the way a mineral reflects light? (luster)," the students will read about a specific scenario and then they need to identify which property is being tested for. I like this because it requires more higher level thinking skills which is what we want students to utilize. Cut-and-dried answers are fine for the basics of any concept but once the basics are mastered, it is in the application where we see how well the students understand something.
We then did two activities involving mineral luster. Luster is a way to classify minerals based on how they reflect light and to what degree. For the first activity I had them create a chart in their notebooks:
I then showed them pictures (with labels) of seven minerals on the screen. The object was to sort them by their luster.
Of course it would have been ideal to have physical samples for the students to examine but we either don't have enough of just don't have them.
The next activity though, was much more hands-on!
I had the students make another chart either at the bottom of the same page as the activity above or the back side.
This one was much simpler. Each student received one Jolly Rancher, one Lifesavers Peppermint candy, and one Sugar Baby.
The object was to sort the three candies into their respective luster. Each column had one candy.
Tomorrow's priority will be on finishing up the JA Biztown stuff. If there is time, I will do the experiment. If not, I will hold it off until Friday. I do want to be sure that there is enough time to do this rather than rush.