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View Diary: Try running a science class on $2.87/ student/ YEAR (154 comments)

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  •  Ah, I love the stories of teacher's creativity! (1+ / 0-)
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    lgmcp

    I am a BIG yard sale fan.  I also drag my son all over the state collecting rocks etc.  

    For example, we couldn't afford a field trip to our local river, this year, so I decided to bring the river to the kids.  I bought a bunch of Bell jars, and we went to the the river.  It actually turned into kind of a mini-community learning situation as people got interested in what we were doing.  We filled the jars with river water, algea, river rocks with scummy stuff on them, small bits of detris, snails, tiny fish, and small peices of driftwood.  Each jar was a river ecosystem in a jar.  The people who were at the river site where we were doing our collecting all pitched in to help us create 24 jars!  

    (Oh, and yeah, I paid for the jars out-of-my-pocket and this was a full day of that supposedly free-time summer vacation I and my son supposedly have "off"  LOL)

    We had enough jars to put on every 8th grade science team table to start the year!  We did so many things with those jars ... from discriminating between abiotic and biotic elements to testing water quality and pH to studying the effects of agricultural run-off on water systems to learning how the scientific method actually works and how to plan unique experimental designs.  

    Thank you for the tip about using Christmas Tree lights!!!  Wow!  What a great new idea and CHEAP way for us to have materials for our circuitry lessons. Thank you!

    Plutocracy (noun) Greek ploutokratia, from ploutos wealth; 1) government by the wealthy; 2) 21st c. U.S.A.; 3) 22nd c. The World

    by bkamr on Mon Nov 28, 2011 at 02:42:21 PM PST

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    •  You are most welcome, and many thanks (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bkamr

      for all you do!

      Go for the "fairy" Xmas lights, small clear ones.   Rechargeable batteries don't really have QUITE enough juice to brighten the bulbs properly, so regular alkaline C cells are really best, though I hate the waste.  Plastic holders for them from radio shack are a must, and pretty durable.    Thumbtacks or brass brads make good junctions AND anchor things to the "house".  Little folded tabs of aluminum foil make a nice-looking "switch".  

      I used to gather up discarded fruit crates, which are satisfyingly sturdy, and paint them over with white(ish) paint remnants (also yardsaled).   The kids would divide them into 2 or 3 "stories" using cardboard floors and brads.   Amazing how much  adolescent males can enjoy a "doll house" if they're wiring it!  

      Tiny electric motors are a huge hit, and kids will compete to win one so they can add fans or elevators to their "house".  

      "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

      by lgmcp on Mon Nov 28, 2011 at 02:54:50 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  You are fantastic! And thanks for the ideas. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        lgmcp

        THIS will definitely be something I'm talking to my content team about.  

        Plutocracy (noun) Greek ploutokratia, from ploutos wealth; 1) government by the wealthy; 2) 21st c. U.S.A.; 3) 22nd c. The World

        by bkamr on Mon Nov 28, 2011 at 03:12:39 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  The kids are so proud (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bkamr

          to show off their model houses on parent's night.  Time the circuitry unit to wrap up right before Open House!  

          "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

          by lgmcp on Mon Nov 28, 2011 at 03:36:39 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

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