Skip to main content

Weave storytelling and hands on activities to interest your students in science concepts

using the RAFT shake table capture your student's
imagination and interest in plate tectonics
and earthquakes!


‘Nothing was going right for Alice today. Her socks didn’t match in the morning, she left her homework at home and was admonished by her 6th grade teacher…and now Alice ended up leaving her glasses at school! How could she see? Her mom has left her a note on the refrigerator, but Alice couldn’t read without her glasses.

Alice tries to call her mom on the cell phone to take her back to school but her mom wasn’t picking up her phone! Then her friend Felicia walks in asking Alice to explain some class notes. Alice was a whiz at explaining and wanted to help her friend but she didn’t have her glasses. Alice then had an idea…she put a plain plastic sheet on the notes and put some drops of water on the sheet and magically the words were legible!’


With this story you can strike a chord with your students and explain the concept of magnification - as light goes through a drop of water, it bends and magnifies the words underneath – the water here plays the role of a magnifying glass.

Laurie Pines, a professional story teller and educator has found that incorporating stories into the curriculum at any level to introduce and augment the lesson, acts as a surprisingly potent magnet to stir the students' desire to learn. The learning becomes more effective if story telling is combined with hands-on activities!

Says Laurie, “I look at the RAFT Materials, Idea Sheets and Activity Kits and think what kind of story can I make around it? We can make up stories like Alice’s story here or we can even use real stories like Archimedes’ story to teach Archimedes principle and supplement it with an hands-on activity!”

This RAFT Member is one of the three instructors who will be showcasing various hands on science activities for 4th graders and above, at the ‘Science Mini-series: Taking Science Outside the Box’ workshop on March 17th at RAFT San Jose. Come and find out how you can weave stories around a science activity/experiment to interest your students in biology, chemistry, earth science and physics.

Eric Welker and Tom Gates from the RAFT education team will also walk you through various tips and innovative techniques for science curriculum teaching. The hands on science workshop gives you access to many RAFT Science Activity Kits, Idea Sheets and materials.

Come and learn about Fingerphones, Benham’s Disc, Mini Ice Mountains, Shake Tables, Who is the daddy, and other RAFT hands on science activities - register for the day long Science Mini-series workshop today! To register click here.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Are you ready for Pi?

Time to get ready fer Pi Day at RAFT me hearties!  Set yer compasses an’ sails fer FREE Pi Day activities on March 8thbetween 3:30 to 5:30 on th’ main poop deck (aye-aye in th’ “Kit Area”) at SJ RAFT!
RAFT’s very own notorious wench, Jeanne Lazzarini (RAFT Math Master Educator), prepared a boatload of Pi Day activities to share with yer classes fer Pi Day (celebrated on March 14th every year)! Pi, (also written as π; th’ ratio of th’ circumference of a circle to its diameter) be an irrational number that goes on forever without any repeating digits, starting with 3.14159… π is illustriously celebrated over land an’ high seas March 14th (get it? On 3.14…!).    Discover great “make-an’-take” Pi day activities that prepare ye fer real Pi day!  Here’s a RAFT idea sheet fer Pi Day you can use now: Pi Day Pin. Make sure X marks th’ spot on ye calendars this March 8th, or walk th’ plank me scallywags!   Shiver me timbers an’ yo-ho-ho!  ‘Tis a RAFTy life fer me, Bucko!!!  Arrrgggghhhhh!

CUSD Shares Possible STEAM Projects by Grade

Twelve STEAM Innovation Leaders from the Campbell Unified School District (CUSD) came to RAFT earlier this month to create new motivational activities for the start of the school year!  They met in grade-level teams with our RAFT Education staff to generate new ideas using RAFT materials that will motivate, challenge, and inspire their students. Each team was given a RAFT Makerspace-in-a-Box containing a wide variety of upcycled materials. They were asked to create a Design Challenge that directed students to solve the instructor’s challenge with the materials from the box. The Design Challenges addressed an engineering standard appropriate for each grade level and could include standards from other subjects. Here are some of their exciting back-to-school ideas:
************************************************************************************* Grades TK – 2 Engineering Standard: K-2-ETS1-1:  Ask questions, make observations, and gather information about a situation people want to chan…

¡Olé! Celebrate Cinco de Mayo

¡Olémis amigos! Holy Guacamole! It’s once again time to celebrate Cinco De Mayo—the 5th of May! Instead of all the controversy around Mexico in the past year, this may be an excellent opportunity to educate your students and allow them to ask questions about what they hear on the news. Cinco de Mayo is not Mexico’s Independence Day from Spain (which is September 16th)! “¡Ay, caramba!”as Bart Simpson would say….

This is “la verdad” (the truth): when the French invaded Mexico in 1862, Mexican General Ignacio Zaragoza’s force of 4,000 soldiers defeated 8,000 French soldiers in the Battle of Puebla on May 5th. The Mexicans’ courage inspired Mexican Americans (Chicanos) to celebrate the victory even though the French occupation continued four more years. Later in the 1960’s and 70’s, Chicanos involved in the civil rights movement associated Cinco de Mayo with their quest for respect in the U.S. They identified with the Native Mexican and Mestizo (people of mixed Native Mexican and European de…