Wow, what a change from last week!
Last week I was presenting on an international stage, sharing our school story of transformation through an Early Years lense......this week (well the last couple of days at least) I have been exploring scientific concepts through the eyes of a 5 year old. What better way to 'keep it real'......yes, sometimes its like herding cats but WOW is it soooooo worth it! I'm typing this with my fingers literally soaked in blue food colouring, with cornflour all over the sleeves of my dress and yip with bubble solution still dripping from the ends of my hair. And I LOVED every second of it.
Meet Lizzy, she likes fizzy...
But you will never believe what happens to her.....
This story not only has rhyme and rhythm but a hilarious outcome which involves farting! What more could you want? I begun the session by showing students the cover and asking them to predict what might happen in the story. I pointed to the bottle and asked them what might be inside? We shared our thinking and our prior experience.
After reading the book we discussed bubbles and how they move and what makes a bubble or a reaction and I used the students language to drive the next question or to provoke thinking eg 'gas' and how bubbles move and float. I was thankful for my 'Suzy Cato' days. I then role modelled a gas reaction using vinegar and baking soda and we discussed what happens and why, I related this to Lizzy and what was going on in her tummy. We passed the 'experiment' around and observed the bubbles and described what we saw.
Next I introduced the challenge stations. Our Early Years team has 5 classes of 5 year olds and during their Maker space session they rotate around the stations they choose to be immersed in. The choice is theirs whether they move after the timer goes off.
Challenge Station 1: Blow a bubble and capture a photo of a buddy's bubble floating.
Challenge Station 2: Build a LEGO Boat and make it float...
Test your boat and then see how many marbles you can add to it before it sinks.
Challenge Station 3: Make and explore 'Sea Foam' (then we added our sea creatures to it.....)
Our first few batches were more like thick bubbly water but we refined our recipe and ended up using hot water which made a much better consistency and also the warm bubbles were a big hit. At the beginning of each subsequent lesson I drained the water off the trough and let students 'scrap' off the slime mix from the bottom.....we then explored its texture and feel before adding it into the blender too make our foam. This was an added bonus I hadn't considered. We played with bubbles, using rich and exciting 'WOW' words to describe how it felt. The highlight of this station for me was when one of our new Korean students cupped his hands as the warm bubbles landed he giggled with excitement and beamed from ear to ear......his peers all taught him a new English word 'Bubble' 'Pop' 'Blue' and before he left he came up to me saying 'thank you' 'thank you' 'thank you' such a delight.
Challenge Station 4: Sensory Sea .......with foam.
I dyed rice (which worked brilliantly by adding and then chopped up small pieces of bubble wrap to recreate a sea look in 3 high sided trays. I then 'buried' sea creatures and laminated fish with upper and lower case letters on them, as well as some with words. The name of the game was to 'dive' and find matching pairs eg Upper and lowercase or matching words.
You can access the resource that inspired me here:
For each 1 cup of long grain white rice add ½ tsp Vinegar, Food colouring
Mix in a lidded ice cream container (etc) to get colour to desired strength. Spread out in a tray and leave to dry.
Add ocean creatures and ‘Fishy letter cards’ (laminated). I also added the chopped up Bubble wrap on the top as the 'froth'.
Challenge Station 5: Create a 'Sea Creature' to later explore the sea foam with...
Learners were provided with waterproof construction materials, including cold melt glue guns. They created a raft of different creatures, including mermaids, turtles, sharks and fish. This station was completely student driven with no prompting or teacher support other than overseeing the glue guns or cutting through any heavy duty plastic.
I wonder what the kids will call me, today one said "I'm looking for the Apple Teacher"......and another said "Are you Mrs Maker?" ......funny.