In particular, our students not only showed an interest in snow, but with the cold weather, they began collecting pieces of ice from our playground at recess time and began posing questions, theories and wonderings about how ice is made, where it comes from and the possible connections and comparisons to snow! With their excitement, Ms. Theis and I couldn't help ourselves but dive into their discoveries with them. As a result, we have begun to investigate their scientific questions and plan learning opportunities that truly encompass their natural curiousity for their surroundings with seasonal changes as a backdrop for learning.
Here is what our students had to say when investigating, observing, and questioning the collected ice in a bin:
To expand on their thinking and provide our students with an authentic way of exploring their theories and questions, we decided to plan another experiment! Our students have truly encapsulated the role of being a "scientist" and the process of making hypothesis' (a guess), making a materials list and recording their observations as research teams. This experiment gave students the opportunity to explore an "ice ball" (water that had been frozen in balloons) under the light of a flashlight and see what happens to it when different materials (e.g. salt, sugar, food colouring) are added to it. Once we turned the lights off in the classroom and turned on all the flashlights, our group of scientists shouted out that our classroom looked like "space" as all the lights shone on the ceiling!
Before they broke off into their research teams, we had students make predictions about what they think would happen when sugar was put on their ice ball and again, when salt was put on their ice ball. Once they begun, they worked as teams to investigate their initial theories.
Students were amazed when they heard "cracking sounds," saw ice cracks, holes and more in their ice balls! Food colouring droppers took their fascination one step further as they witnessed the colour travel throughout, on top, and inside their ice ball changing it's colour and providing a new glow!
Our hope is to take this curiousity to the next level by continuing to make connections to our cloud inquiry and investigate seasonal changes. We look forward to continuing to share our learning journey with you and we can't wait to see and hear from our students as our cloud inquiry reaches new heights!