Tuesday, October 12, 2010

We're Back!!! with UV Detecting Beads

Whew!!! It has been so busy at school and I have fallen behind with our blog. The ACES have been hard at work for just over three weeks now. We have some exciting things happening and I can't wait to tell you about them!

For our first class, we had a science inquiry lesson. I gave all the ACES, 1st grade all the way through 6th graders, three mysterious beads to examine and describe.

The kids thought of adjectives like: smooth, hard, white, small, and circular. They noted there was a hole in the center.

After carefully observing these "magic" beads, the students hypothesized about what could be so special about the beads.

They said . . .

. . . maybe they glow in the dark!

. . . maybe they change color because of our mood!

. . . maybe they are sensitive to heat and cold!

We spent time observing the "magic" beads in the classroom. Then . . . we went outside with our beads. Something amazing happened!

The "magic" beads changed from white to a rainbow of colors. Why? Because these beads are ULTRAVIOLET DETECTING BEADS!!!

The ACES are so naturally curious that a myriad of experimentation began to take place. What happens if I go in the shade of the building? What happens when we go back inside the school? Will the beads always be colored now instead of white? This curiosity is why I love my job and never cease to be amazed at the learning that unfolds in young minds every day!

We talked about how ultraviolet rays from the sun can be harmful to our skin. We also decided that we could experiment to see if sunscreen is really effective. The possibilities with our UV detecting beads were endless!