Sunday, March 20, 2016

Recycling Paper

As a wrap up to our Materials in Our World unit of study, we actually recycled paper.  The purpose of this activity was to help students understand the process of how paper is made and also how something new can be made from something existing…in other words, how to recycle something.

We began by tearing eight squares of single ply toilet tissue into small pieces.  We put these pieces into a plastic bottle and added water.  We placed a cap on the bottle and shook the bottles for at least ten minutes…maybe more!


When we finished shaking the bottles, we noticed the material inside had changed.  It was now paper pulp.  We emptied the contents of the bottles onto a screen, which was on top of a cup.  The cup caught the water and the pulp stayed on top of the screen.


We pressed out the excess water from the pulp and placed another screen on top of the pulp.  Then we used sponges to blot out any extra water.


We removed the top screen and very carefully peeled off the recycled paper.  We put it on some wax paper and let it dry over night!

It was a great activity and hopefully you have seen the finished product at home.  Be sure to ask your kindergartner about how to recycle paper.

Have a safe and relaxing spring break!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

We managed to squeeze in a little fun on St. Patrick's Day.  It was so fun to see so many friends dressed in green.  We made leprechaun ears, read stories and play a leprechaun race game in math.  Even Mr. Ball posed with us for a group photo…hope you had a great St. Patrick's Day, too!



Paper and Water

This week, we continued our unit of study on Materials in Our World with a more in depth look at paper.  We observed and explored several types of paper, including newsprint, tag board, corrugated paper, cardboard, chip board, wax paper, paper towel and construction paper.  We spent some time discovering what happens to paper when you add water to it.  We were surprised to learn that some types of paper absorb water, while others repel it.





Thursday, March 10, 2016

Making Particleboard

Our next activity was to make particleboard, which is made by combining wood shavings and sawdust with resin.  Before we could do this, our scientists needed to observe and compare wood shavings and sawdust.  Of course, we also had to write about our findings!




Now we were ready to make particleboard.  But first, if we were gong to be scientists, we needed to look like scientists.  We borrowed lab coats from the Northview Science Lab and got to work.  We started by observing a sample of particleboard.  Then we got some resin, which was a little cold and crumbly.  We needed it to get to a consistency similar to play dough so we had to knead it in our hands.    This was not everyone's favorite part!  Next we added the wood shavings and sawdust, mixed it all together and shaped our particleboard the way we wanted it.






We needed to let the particleboard dry overnight before we could bring it home.  Hopefully you have found this by now in your child's back pack.  Be sure to ask them what particleboard is and how it is made.  You will be surprised at how much they know!



We are getting good at researching and writing about what we are learning!
Here are our scientists with their "serious" faces…

…don't they look like scientists?

Wood and Water

We have been busy this week with our Materials in Our World unit of study.  We started the week exploring wood and water.  We discovered that water can sometimes change the color of wood.  We also learned that some types of wood absorb water quickly, while others repel water.  We had a fun experience learning how to use eye droppers, too.  Scientists have to observe, compare and report on their findings.  


We put drops of water on five different types of wood…basswood, cedar, pine, plywood and particleboard.



You have to be really patient while you are observing!

Next, we tried to see if wood would sink or float.  We thought for sure it would sink…after all, heavy things sink.  We were wrong...


Like all good scientists, we needed to know more.  How could we get the samples of pine and plywood to sink?  We added weight to the wood samples!  We added paperclips to the samples and secured them with a rubber band.  How many paper clips do you think it would take?


We discovered that we needed to add 20 paper clips to the sample of pine to get it to sink and only 10 to the sample of plywood to get it to sink.  We decided plywood must be heavier than pine.  Now it was time to record our findings so we can report them to our readers!


We did some community writing first, then added our new learning to our materials journals.