As part of National Science and Engineering Week P1-4 explored ‘The World in Motion’. For our morning challenge pupils had to draw and label non-living things which move on the land, in or on the water and in the air. We had lots of books to help give us ideas and we had to sort all the different machines and vehicles that we drew.
After break, P1-4 invited in parents and friends to join them as they explored and investigated different experiments and activities about forces and motion. They constructed amazing gearing systems, experienced the power of elastic or stored energy by constructing and testing paddle boats, flew paper areoplanes and tested the different designs, measuring distances flown to see which was the most effective and had lots of fun seeing how pushing forces could make balloon rockets speed along a length of crabbing line! We kept the activities in the classroom until the end of term so pupils had plenty of time to investigate them.
The scientific concepts and rules behind the experiments are pretty big and complicated and we wouldn’t expect children to be able to wax lyrical about the detail of the physics, (could I – without a bit of swotting up?!), but it is really important for children to have exposure to these experiments – most of the planned activities could just as easily be classified as children’s games and toys as well as science experiments. Hopefully as they grow older, children will remember and be enthused by what they were able to discover and develop an appreciation that so much of what they experience and play with as children is grounded in science.