Ready-To-Use Teaching Ideas: Science
- Two long cardboard tubes (from a roll of gift wrap)
- Variety of solid and hollow wood blocks, including triangular and ramp blocks of different sizes
- Variety of small and large vehicles (plastic and metal)
- Chart paper and marker
- Problem solving
Organize children into small groups and create a schedule so that each group will have an opportunity to work in the block area.
Place the suggested blocks and materials around the perimeter of your block area. Set up a ramp to introduce the activity. Ask children if they know the name of the structure you made and how it could be used.
Show children two different sizes of toy vehicles and ask which they think will go the farthest. Now place the cars at the top of the ramp and let them go. Encourage children to describe why one of the cars went farther than the other. Could it be the size? What the car is made of? Then, invite children to alter the ramp by making it higher or lower. What happens? Record children's observa- ; tions on chart paper.
Suggest that children make several ramps, varying the sizes and angles of each. They can also use tubes to create ramp tunnels. Give them all of the vehicles and ask them to sort them by size. Do they think that larger cars will go faster and farther than smaller ones? Invite them to compare how the sizes and angles of the ramps affect the speed and distance. Continue to record their observations on the chart paper.
Ask children to sort the plastic and metal vehicles. Do they think that the metal cars will go faster than the plastic cars? Again, ask them to test their predictions and summarize their findings.
Remember: Children learn through repetition. Keep the ramp materials available so they have opportunities to continue their studies.
Finding the angle: Send a note home explaining that children have been learning about ramps and angles. Ask families to take their children on a walk to find ramps or angles in their homes or neighborhoods.
CURRICULUM CONNECTION: ART
Rolling the Paint: Place a large sheet of paper inside a tray or basin. Give two children small plastic balls or marbles and ask children to dip the balls into tempera paint. Then, invite them to roll the balls over the paper. Show children how to hold and tilt the edges of the tray so the balls roll from side to side until their paintings are complete.
Red Light, Green Light by Anastasia Suen (Harcourt Children's)
What is a Plane? by Lloyed G. Douglas (Welcome Books)
Zoom! by Robert Munsch (Scholastic)