Monday, August 16, 2010

Our Country School: Boats Float People Swim

During our science lessons last week, we have been exploring water!

Books for this unit:

Scuffy the Tugboat is great for teaching a number of concepts about water. We discussed that boats float-both big and small, and they float in any water-rivers, ponds, and bathtubs. We discussed bodies of water, ponds, rivers, oceans, and what you might find in and around each. The kids really loved this book, especially Charger who keeps asking us to read it.

The Boats Go from Go Go Go, part of the Read with Dick and Jane series, was the perfect story to read just before our sink or float lesson. It is a simple story about Dick & Jane's sink or float experiment.

Swimming Lessons by Betsy Jay is a wonderful story about-you guessed it-swimming lessons. We discussed that we {people} sink if we do not learn how to float and swim. The illustrations in this book are adorable! Love this one.

And, Puddles by Jonathan London, gave us the chance to talk about where some of our water comes from {rain} and small bodies of water-puddles and ponds.

The experiment:

We finally did the Sink or Float experiment at our house. It's so basic its almost funny to call it an experiment, but it certainly is. I gathered things from around the house-inside and out-a toy boat, a wooden block, a metal fork, a plastic fork, safety pin, pencil eraser, rock, penny, nickle, quarter, pine cone, cork, and the lid of a baby food jar.

The general prediction was that if an item was small it would float and if it was large it would sink. Obviously, that was incorrect as we found out that most of our large items can float and most of the small items would sink.

I used the baby food jar lid to help the kids understand that it is the air-not the actual item-that floats. When you place the lid rim side up, it will float. In fact, it will act as a boat and other small items can be placed on it. If it is placed rim side down, it sinks.

My husband and I were also interested to find out that the plastic fork only floats for a short time and then sinks. That's why it was in the middle of our sheet along with the lid.

And the art work:

We made a pond painting.

Step one- Paint a blue oval and a green square.

Step two-Let dry. In our case, overnight while you go swimming at Grandma's. While swimming, explore water further & water Grandma's flowers.

Step three-Cut out the oval & square. I cut out Charger's, but Mustang cut her own.

Step four-Glue together.

Step 5-Decorate your pond. I gave the kids foam sticker boats, fish, flowers, and ducks {the ducks are not pictured, Mustang told me she just had to have a duck, and so of course Charger needed one, too}. Check out Charger's concentration lol!

Step 6-the finished product.

We had a lot of fun with this unit. We are actually not completely done. We spent today pouring water into various containers, and plan to make another water related craft. I love the simplicity of this experiment, but how effective it has been. I dont know how many times I have caught the kids doing their own 'Sink or Float' experiments since the lesson. They enjoyed it too!

preschool corner

This post is linked up at Jolanthe's Homeschool Creations Preschool & Kindergarten corner. If you are looking for some awesome ideas for your homeschool, check out the weekly link ups.

Happy Homeschooling and God Bless!


Ticia said...

I love having a complete unit all together like that. It feels so cohesive.

Anonymous said...

What a great experiment and craft!! I loved all the books that went along with it as well :-)