Monday, October 14, 2013

Making Marshmallow Molecules!

This year some of our children have been studying chemistry using the great books from Real Science-4-Kids.  We are using Focus on Elementary Chemistry for both Chiquita (3rd grade) and Snuggles (1st grade).  Twinkle Toes (4th grade) is working her way through Focus on Middle School Chemistry, which is more challenging and seemed to be a better fit for her.  (Currently my plan is to have her complete all the Middle School books in the series - Chemistry, Physics, Biology, Geology and Astronomy - before possibly moving on to Concepts and Challenges in Science sometime before high school.)  So far everyone has been very happy with the switch and learning so much, including myself since I never did study chemistry growing up! ;) 


The chemistry books are broken into ten chapters and we have been spending about two weeks or so on each - one week reading and studying the material in the student textbook and the following week working through the activities and experiments in the corresponding laboratory workbooks.    

Elementary Book on the Left and Middle School Book on the Right
I love that both levels cover basically the same material in each chapter (the middle school book is just more advanced and goes into further detail) so it is easy for me to combine lessons and work with all the children at the same time. 



The week before last we completed the experiments for Chapter 2 - which was all about "Molecules" - and the kids were so excited to see that the lab experiments included making molecules with marshmallows! 

Demonstrating a "water molecule" 

Recording data in their workbooks




First they got to make whatever creations they wanted, then they had to "follow the rules" to create specific types of molecules.  



The older boys wanted to know why they don't get to use this awesome science program this year... I'm actually considering switching them next semester, once they complete Book One of Concepts and Challenges in Science.  We'll see... In the meantime they can't resist participating in all the experiments!  

 
"Mom!  I made a square based Pyramid... Can this count as my Ancient History project?!"  
I am really looking forward to the kids returning from their trip so we can move on to Chapter 3! 

10 comments:

  1. I enjoyed seeing your photos about this science book before and plan to look at it more closely when ordering materials for next year. It looks like something I would have fun teaching as much as they would enjoy learning.

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  2. This looks like a lot more fun than the text we're using for science. I may have to switch things up for the next quarter.

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  3. You are awesome! Our family is truly blessed to learn from your example. God reward your efforts and thank you for the amazing ideas and resources. When we save up for our next materials I'm looking forward to using your links so we can give back to you!!

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  4. We're using the Astronomy elementary book (2nd grader here) with the study guide folder download (kinda like a lapbook but we're putting it into a scrapbook). We've done Ch. 1 so far and hoep to buy a telescope soon to use for experiments! I like this program, too!

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    1. How fun! I have been meaning to look into the study folders a little further.

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  5. I've been hoping you would post about this science text. Thanks!

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  6. The experiment looks fun! Do you seal your wooden saint dolls? If so what do you use? Thanks and God bless!

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    1. Yes, I usually spray them with a clear acrylic sealer or lacquer.

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  7. Oh wow! Those look amazing! I might have to check out these books for next year!!

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  8. We recently switched from Apologia, great curriculum but we often didn't do because it was just too involved for our family. We'll probably use it in middle school or high school and utilize their teaching DVD's. But for our younger group we went to God's Design for Science by AIG. We just love it! I'm glad you have also found a curriculum for your family to enjoy. Those experiments look super fun, and I'm sure will make a lasting impression on your kiddos. Blessings! K

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