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1st Grade Activities | Posted in Early Childhood

Hello Kristina. In Texas children learn about clouds in first grade. I saw an activity that used shaving cream in a jar to represent the different types of clouds. I also think you need food coloring. You can find the exact materials on Pinterest. Basically it is a hands on way to provide students with a visual of various clouds. Also shaving cream is usually inexpensive. Another option is to teach moon phases with oreo cookies. Not sure what you are looking for but I hope that helps. I always check pinterest for fun ideas.


Naomi Bourrous

Learning Science Concepts through Play | Posted in Early Childhood

I think A LOT of science concepts can be taught through play! A lot of the experiments done with children, they will think it is playing. Children are so much more engaged in activities like this instead of just sitting in lecturing to young children. Learning through play is even beneficial for older students!

One experiment that I did with second graders that they really liked was "Cloud in a Cup". In this experiment, the children really liked putting the shaving cream on top of the water, adding food coloring and watching the food coloring collect and eventually fall like rain.

This link talks about different experiments that children can do that are basically playing!
http://www.fundamentallychildren.com/play-ideas/by-subject/science/


Ashtyn Riley

Teaching for Conceptual Understanding in Science | Posted in Professional Development

Currently, I am entering my 4th year of teaching 7th and 8th grade science. I’ve always felt that the traditional lecture format my department employs is not the most effective way to reach my students. I’ve added numerous lab activities in an attempt to promote deeper understanding. However, it wasn’t until I stumbled across this thread and read about conceptual understanding that I felt like this is the method that I should have been using all along. The shift to NGSS blends perfectly with this style of instruction and learning. I agree with Joyce in regards to covering the curriculum. We tend to sacrifice depth of learning in favor of squeezing everything in before the next round of state testing begins.

I have read and reviewed many of the resources provided in your book “Teaching for Conceptual Understanding in Science.” I felt the different instructional strategies listed in chapter 8 were extremely beneficial. I’m left with a few lingering questions though. Based on what I’ve read, teachers need to administer some sort of probe or pre-assessment to gauge students’ misconceptions or prior knowledge before planning instruction. Are these probes supposed to take the entire class period? If not, then how do you plan the day based on information you are gathering in a 15-20 minute time span? Using the conceptual thinking model how are teachers providing instruction for concepts that are completely unfamiliar to students?


Shalen Boyer

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