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Monday, February 05, 2007

Blinded me with SCIENCE!!

I'm throwing out this plea to any and all science teachers who may be reading this blog. I would love to hear from you any fun (or even boring) hands-on activities that relate to the states of matter. We have been reading about solids, liquids, and gases and discussing, but I'd like to do something more concrete with them.

And I don't mean pushing them into the bathroom and saying, "You should be able to find all three states in this room!"

Anybody? My undying gratitude for anyone who shares in the next couple of days.


Ed U. Cater said...

When I've taught science in the past, I've always used this as a quickie to introduce the states: Supplies needed-alka seltzer, water, balloon, and an exercise water bottle with a pop up spout. Introduce the alka seltzer & have students make or write observations about it (texture, color etc.); introduce water & have students make or write observations about that; put balloon on spout of water bottle, drop alka seltzer in bottle close the lid, but keep the spout open. Watch the balloon grow. Have students make or write observations about what just occurred. They observe all 3 states through that one experiment, which takes less than a minute to happen. It's best if they can do it in groups, but then you would need to buy water bottles for each group...then you have to use your judgment about putting alka seltzer in the hands of your students.

Anonymous said...

I teach 4th grade in MN. I have just done this lesson with my class. Take water, discuss liquid. Boil the water in the microwave. Then take the really hot water outside and throw it up into the air. It is great! The kids get to see the water turn to a soild and a gas all at the same time! Of course, it works best if the temp is -10 or colder!

Mike in Texas said...

Dude, you've got to do a lesson on Oobleck. Get yourself the book "Barthlomew and the Oobleck" by Dr. Seuss.

The recipe is about 1 cup of water to a pound of corn starch, with 5 or 6 drops of green food coloring and stir. You're looking for a consistency of that around soft ice cream.

Once you have it prepared bang a spoon on it to show the kids how it behaves like a solid, then drop a penny in it and watch them let it sink like it were in a liquid.

The best part is, you can give some to the kids to play with. I just scoop it out on the table and let them have fun. As their body hear evaporates the water you get to discuss evaporation too.

Clean up is extremely easy, all it takes is water. Collect the powder back from the kids and you can regenerate it with water. Just don't keep it much longer than a day, it will start to stink.

Mike in Texas said...

Here's a video on how to do it.