We have a new head at school and I'm new to the role of science coordinator. It's science week in a few weeks and I'm supposed to be putting together boxes that will circulate round the classrooms for the children to investigate during the day. I'm fine with most of them but can anyone help me with things I can include in a box named magnets and forces and another called lights and shadows? They need to include mini investigations that the children (year 1-4) can do themselves. I'm starting to panic that it's going to be a bit of a failure but as we have a new head I want it to go well!
I'm a technician in middle school, so not sure what equipment you'll have, and I've no idea bout curriculum at that age but...
magnets - which materials are magnetic?
you need some magnets(!) and lots of different materials, so plastic spoons, lolly sticks, nails, paper clips, cotton wool, paper, plastic something, metal spoons, rubber bands etc
forces - maybe something to do with gravity, looking at how size of parachute can slow down a weight falling??
make different sized parachutes by cutting a bin bag into small medium and large squares, tie string / cotton from each corner to the middle and attach a lump of plasticine / duplo man / rubber duck ?! and drop from height and time how long it takes to reach the ground
forces - or friction? how easily does a toy can move over different surfaces?
use the carpet areas, tiled floor, playground, grass, desks etc and see which is easiest? if you've not got force meters to measure how much force is needed to pull the car, try pushing it gently and seeing how far it'll go?
light - look at whether materials are translucent, transparent or opaque
you'll need torches and different materials e.g. paper, thin card, thick card, plastic (cut from food packaging), polythene (those punched pocket filing things), tracing paper, metal (tin lid), wood (lolly sticks again)
shadows - fuzzy or sharp shadows
get them to cut a shape out of a piece of card and investigate what happens to the shadow when a torch is moved nearer / further away