Thursday, April 21, 2016

Ramp it Up

Despite the scaffolding and reduced space, first graders explore physics.

Get the marble in the cup, after a very, very  long trip.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Renewable Energy

Fourth graders explore renewable part of their study of the Dutch in New Amsterdam.   The two projects are taken from the K'Nex Renewable Energy Kits.

Water powered grist mill.  

Alex, I.C.E. intern, troubleshooting grist mill.

Proud constructors with their wind-powered water lifter.

Warning:  When the fan is on full speed, the water splashes quite a bit.

Thanks Hila for the photos.

Indoor Shore

Some snapshots of another themed choice/work time.  This time the theme was:  shells.

Shell sort.  

Printing in clay with shells.

Which animal(s) were born with their shell?  Which borrowed theirs?

A hermit crab?  A fiddler crab? A water snail?

What is this? 

Students hypothesized:  "A snake skin?"  "A rattle snake skin?" when they heard the shaker sound.  "Beads? "  Then they dissected the specimen (a whelk egg case) and found tiny shells in each section.  Students pasted the shells on paper to keep them to study later on.

Upon opening the whelk egg case:  "Oh it is a cocoon of shells."

Thank you Celso for sending the photos.  

Scavenger Hunt at the Shore

 Urban Park Rangers guided K students as they hunted for Shore treasures.

A grid for placing specimens.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Found Objects Turn into Vehicles

GM look out.  Green Studio is challenging your dominance in auto design.

Found objects and wood scraps,  carefully cultivated by J.E., get turned into cars by First Graders.  So scientific...after weeks of testing sliders and rollers on ramps.  So cute... "My cheeks hurt from smiling so much."  

Sustainability Connection?

It's rather weak.  But couldn't keep myself from publishing this...

Okay:  How about humor sustains us?  See the play on words...loads of fun?  As 2nd graders build model bridges we ask them to test to find out how much of a  load their bridges can hold.  According to his teachers, Amy and Penina, Zaydon was hysterical laughing at the double meaning in his entry.

Indoor Shore with K

On Fridays,  half of the K classes go to a Brooklyn Salt Marsh.  But that doesn't mean the other two K classes don't get to experience the shore.  Why? The shore is brought into their rooms. In Maryann's class last "Indoor Shore" Friday the theme was fish anatomy.

A tracing paper overlaid on a picture of a fish skeleton allowed students to  "flesh" out their own fish.

Caught to be food for people's bodies, these fish are "food" for student brains.

Respectfully handling once living fish. to learn about gills, scales, and fins.

These students are looking at living fish.

Making gyotaku-like prints with fish molds.  Look for the prints in the Kindergarten classrooms and corridors.

Cut out and stuffed with paper, then stapled.

A shout out to Fifth Grade community service volunteers...who arrived to support the adults.  We love community service.  And to Sophie Fels Brennan for running an activity and sending these great photos.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Forest School Fairy Houses

Is the forest filled with fairy spirits? Are those mysterious nooks and crannies among the roots and tree branches homes to magical creatures?

Last winter, Amy and Jacqueline read a very special book about fairy houses to their Pre-K classes. The children were immediately intrigued... could they build fairy homes at Forest School?  If they did, would the fairies move in? After some debate about whether fairies are "real" or not, the children decided to try.
At Forest School, the children saw a curious thing, were these the remains of a fairy house?

The children got to work...

Things took shape...

Fairy houses were sprouting everywhere!

Back at school, the work continued during  recess...

And in the classroom, too!

Nature's beauty is everywhere!