Sunday, February 19, 2017

Where The Wind Blows

My second grade after schoolers and I are working on weather, as previously mentioned, so I decided to do a little experiment about wind!

What you'll need:

  • a bunch of different items (some heavy, some light)
  • 2 copies of photos of each item
  • something to provide wind such as a fan or vent
  • a chart to record predictions and results
  • a sheet for students to record their individual results
  • tape or glue
My intended idea was to give each child an item or two, set them on a table, and have a fan blow them as part of the test. Now I could've sworn I've seen some fans in the building before but the day I need one, they're nowhere to be found. I even asked our lovely custodian but no luck. As every teacher knows, we have to have a plan B. Now my plan B was to have us all blow on the items to simulate wind. However by a stroke of luck when I got to our classroom I realized the air vent was blowing and we could use that!

We've recently talked about hurricanes and tornadoes as well as the damage they can do. We started by reviewing that and talking about the power of a strong wind. To prepare for the activity I chose an assortment of household/schoolhold items. (I know schoolhold isn't a word but I think it fits 🤣). I tried to choose enough for each student to have two but I managed to miscount, of course. Then I made and laminated 2 copies of small cards with pictures of each item on them. The items I chose included:

  1. a stapler
  2. an empty water bottle
  3. a paper tower roll
  4. a pen
  5. a binder clip
  6. a glue stick
  7. a fish toy (a finding nemo toy I had in my house to be exact. One of my kids goes "you have kids?" and I said "no I just like finding nemo" 🤣)
  8. a full water bottle
  9. a plastic spoon
  10. a master lock
  11. headphones
  12. a cell phone (wanna get your students engaged? hand one of them your cell phone)
After each kid was randomly given a card or two, they were handed their item so they could gauge the real feel and weight of it. They then wrote predictions, (in complete sentences) with reasons for whether they thought their item could be moved by the wind or not.

After each student had time to get a feel for their item and wrote their sentences, they were called up to the chart to tape their item to the column that reflected their prediction. Then they placed their item on the vent to see if it would move. The children were all so excited to watch each other place their items on the vent and see if they moved. Their predictions were shocking to me. Some of them thought items as heavy as a stapler could be moved by the vent.

After they tested their theories, they placed their second copy of their item card on the results side of the chart. The students then went back to their original recording sheet and wrote down their results. My kiddos had so much fun with this and learned a lot about the power of wind!

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