# STEM Projects

Wow!  We are having fun in science with our STEM projects.  STEM stands for science, technology, engineering and math.  Each grade is completing a STEM project.   Kincaid will be having a STEM Expo during the day on January 3oth.  In the evening, we will be showcasing all of the STEM projects during our curriculum night.  Watch your child’s classroom blogs and the school emails for more information about our STEM night.  Be sure to stop by and see all of the great projects our students have been working on.

# Kindergarten

We started the second quarter learning about Gravity.  We did experiments just like Galileo did to study how balls of different sizes and weight all fell to the ground at the same speed.

In Kindergarten we also had a lesson on our 5 senses.  We tried to identify what was in a container based only on what we could hear, smell or feel.  We then used our 5 senses to describe an OREO cookie.  Lastly we used our sense of taste and ate our OREO.  YUM!

In first grade, we have been investigating Magnets & Sound.  The students came to the lab for a hands on investigation into many of the properties of magnets.  We experimented with magnets to see what types of materials are attracted to a magnet.  We learned that magnets can attract and repel, that they have a north and a south pole, and that there is an invisible magnetic field.

In our sound unit we have learned that sound is caused by vibrations. We learned the difference between volume and pitch.  Ask your first grader to tell you the difference between the two.  We felt vibrations in our throats and on tuning forks.  Ask your child what happens when you touch the tines of a tuning fork to the surface of water. We used sound bottles and made our own guitars using tissue boxes and rubber bands to explore what makes a high or low pitch.

Next we made homemade silly putty and saw that when we mixed two liquids together we created a solid with different properties than the two liquids.

Here is the recipe in case you want to try it at home:

• Dissolve 1 tsp of Borax powder in 1/2 cup of warm water.
• Dilute 1 ounce of Elmer’s school glue with 1 ounce of water  in a plastic cup.
• Optional (for a fun color): add 2-3 drops of food coloring to the glue and stir.
• Add about 2-3 tsps of the Borax mixture to the glue mixture and stir with a popsicle stick.
• As you stir the mixture, it will stiffen into a soft lump.  After the lump has formed, take it out of the cup and knead until all of the excess water is squeezed out.

Note: be careful not to lay it on paper or it may stick.  Store it in a Ziploc bag when not using to keep it elastic.

Lastly we will be learning about making predictions.  We will make boats out of tin foil, predict how many blocks they can hold before they sink, then perform an experiment to see if our predictions were right.

In second grade, we have been investigating Energy!  We used wind energy to study how the size, shape and weight of an object can affect how it moves and how much energy is necessary to move it.  We learned that a force is any push or pull.  Next we studied forces and motion by using marbles, foam tracks, and dominoes.  Ask your second grader to tell you about our “Domino Knockdown” activity.  See if they can tell you what we needed to do to increase the force and be able to move our block of four dominoes.

Second grade will be working on a STEM project in December that uses what they have learned about energy and pushes/pulls.

Third grade has been learning all about weathering and erosion.  We used chalk and sugar cubes to study chemical weathering and physical weathering.  We then got our hands dirty and learned about stream erosion.  We saw how rain caused erosion and learned that waves can erode beaches.  After spending all fall learning about rocks, minerals, fossils, soils, weathering and erosion we will finish the semester with a STEM project that combines all that we have learned.  The students will be making a “mining tool” to “mine” chocolate chips from cookies.

The Kincaid fourth graders have been learning about simple machines, forces and motion.

We saw how each of the simple machines worked and then investigated Force & Motion by making our own “roller coasters”.  The students used foam tubing to make a roller coaster track with a loop.  They used the track to study the motion of a marble on their track and to demonstrate Potential and Kinetic energy.

Next the students divided up into teams and constructed their own catapult.  They launched marshmallows to study forces and to see whose catapult could fling a marshmallow the farthest distance.  Too much fun!

The overall winner was Cassine in Mr. Bridges’ class.

And the class winners were

Nya, Ms. Thompson’s class – second place overall

Susanna, Ms. Michael’s class

Riley, Ms. Rausch’s class

Avery, Mr. Long’s class

Fifth grade is unique from the other grades in that instead of all fifth graders studying the same unit at the same time they rotate through the units therefor each class is studying a different topic.  By the time CRCT testing is done in April all student swill have experienced all of the science units.

Here are the units all fifth graders will study during the year:

Electricity:

The fifth graders will make their hair stand on end when they experiment with static electricity.  They will learn what is needed to make a complete circuit that allows electricity to flow through.  Students will use batteries, light bulbs and wires to make series and parallel circuits.  See if your child knows which type of circuit is used to wire a house.  They will also learn what items are good conductors of electricity and what materials make good insulators.

Matter:

We will be making molecules out of pretzels and marshmellows and learning about density.  Additional activities in the science lab will include experiments to see physical and chemical changes.  Most of our experiments use items commonly found in your house so you can ask them to show you some of our experiments.

Classification and Heredity:

We will learn about taxonomy by classifying “aliens” from the planet “Pamishan” based upon their appearance.  During our science lab time we will also learn about inherited and acquired characteristics, what a genotype and a phenotype are, and do an activity where each student will come up with different genotypes for facial features and then draw the face based upon the genotype/phenotype that they came up with.

Constructive and Destructive Forces:

Students will do activities to learn about erosion, volcanoes, earthquakes, and deltas.  Students will use stream tables to show erosion caused by streams and rain and the formation of deltas.  They will also study the effects of waves on beach erosion and learn how a reef can lessen the force of the waves and therefor reduce beach erosion.

Cells and Microorganisms:

For this unit the students are learning how to use microscopes.  They will make their our own slides of onion skins and cheek cells to see some of the differences between animal and plant cells.  They will also learn about helpful and harmful microorganisms and test areas of the school to see which are the germiest.

# Garden News

Look what we found in our garden!

We are continuing to grow and harvest vegetables in the Kincaid school garden.  Some of the classes have helped prepare garden beds and plant fall, cool weather crops.  We have planted lettuce, spinach, radishes, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale, bok choy, chard, and brussel sprouts.  As you can see from the pictures the garden has also become a habitat for some animals.

# Kindergarten

Kindergarten is learning about pushes and pulls and different types of motion.  They will also come to the science lab in October for some experiments to help them learn about gravity.

The Kincaid first graders will have a lesson on water, the water cycle, and the different forms of precipitation.  We will discuss the phases of water and perform an experiment to see if the weight of ice changes as it melts.  They will also be making ice cream to observe how matter changes states.  We will try to turn our liquid milk into solid-like ice cream.  And then we will eat it, yum!

Second grade is learning about matter this quarter.  They will be doing different experiments to see physical and chemical changes of matter.   In one of our experiments we will be trying to clean pennies with different substances.  If you have a few extra dirty pennies, send them in with your second grader so we can see if we can get them shiny again.

In third grade the students have been learning about rocks and minerals.  We have been doing several tests on our rocks and minerals to see how they have different characteristics.  Ask your third grader how we test for hardness.  See if they know what the softest and hardest minerals are.  Did you know that not all rocks produce the same color streak when you try to “write” with them?  There are even magnetic rocks and rocks that can float.

Third grade will also be learning about fossils.  They will “dig” for real fossils and try to identify them.  Ask your child what the difference is between a mold and a cast fossil.  Each third grader will make their own cast fossil and bring it home in October.

The fourth grade classes have been learning about the water cycle and weather.  Each student had a “water cycle in a bag” experiment to bring home.  During our weather unit we have been learning about different weather instruments.  We made our own wind vane in class and learned how to read rain gauges.  All fourth graders are doing a STEM project along with the weather unit.  Each student is designing their own rain gauge, making it in science lab, taking it home to test and record data for two weeks, and then evaluating their design.

Fifth grade is unique from the other grades in that instead of all fifth graders studying the same unit at the same time they rotate through the units therefor each class is studying a different topic.  By the time CRCT testing is done in April all student swill have experienced all of the science units.

Here are the units all fifth graders will study during the year:

Electricity:

The fifth graders will make their hair stand on end when they experiment with static electricity.  They will learn what is needed to make a complete circuit that allows electricity to flow through.  Students will use batteries, light bulbs and wires to make series and parallel circuits.  See if your child knows which type of circuit is used to wire a house.  They will also learn what items are good conductors of electricity and what materials make good insulators.

Matter:

We will be making molecules out of pretzels and marshmellows and learning about density.  Additional activities in the science lab will include experiments to see physical and chemical changes.  Most of our experiments use items commonly found in your house so you can ask them to show you some of our experiments.

Classification and Heredity:

We will learn about taxonomy by classifying “aliens” from the planet “Pamishan” based upon their appearance.  During our science lab time we will also learn about inherited and acquired characteristics, what a genotype and a phenotype are, and do an activity where each student will come up with different genotypes for facial features and then draw the face based upon the genotype/phenotype that they came up with.

Constructive and Destructive Forces:

Students will do activities to learn about erosion, volcanoes, earthquakes, and deltas.  Students will use stream tables to show erosion caused by streams and rain and the formation of deltas.  They will also study the effects of waves on beach erosion and learn how a reef can lessen the force of the waves and therefor reduce beach erosion.

Cells and Microorganisms:

For this unit the students are learning how to use microscopes.  They will make their our own slides of onion skins and cheek cells to see some of the differences between animal and plant cells.  They will also learn about helpful and harmful microorganisms and test areas of the school to see which are the germiest.

# WOW! See how we’ve grown!

The Kincaid Garden has really started to grow now that the weather is warmer.  Many thanks to all of the students, staff and parents who have helped get our garden growing!  Please by stop during the summer and check on the garden.  If you see a ripe tomato, pepper or anything else that is ready to be picked please harvest it.  There are also some great herbs (basil, oregano, parsley, mint) that can be harvested throughout the summer.

# Earth Day in the Garden

Stop by and see how our Kincaid School Garden is growing.  In celebration of Earth Day, we had a garden work day on 4/18 and 4/19.   Some of the 2nd-5th grade classes spent time in the garden working throughout the two days.  Home Depot (Shallowford Road) donated many plants and sent volunteers to help us with our gardening.  Thank you Home Depot!   Also, thank you to all of our parent volunteers!  Our garden would not be possible without you.   Other contributions to our garden were made by Keep Cobb Beautiful, Queen of Hearts, Pike Nurseries, Lowes, Hummel Landscaping, and Wild Birds Unlimited.

As part of Earth Day, we created an area in our garden in memory of Bea T.  Pink butterfly bushes and pink flowers were chosen since pink was Bea’s favorite color.  We also moved soil and mulch, weeded, planted the remaining garden beds, filled some pots with herbs and flowers, created a perennial garden, and planted some bushes.  Below are pictures of some of our students hard at work.

And the results of everyone’s hard work:

# Kindergarten

The kindergarten classes came to the science lab to learn about rocks.  They sorted rocks by different characteristics and saw that rocks can be very different from one another.  They started their own rock collection by “panning for rocks.

We also thought like Galileo and did experiments to learn how gravity affects how objects fall.

First Grade has been learning about animals this 9 weeks.  We observed earthworms to learn how they respond to their environment.  Ask your first grader “What do all animals need in order to survive?”.

The second graders are studying life cycles.  We learned the four stages of a butterfly life cycle and made a model of the butterfly life cycle.  All of the second grade classes have butterfly larva in their class rooms.  They will observe the caterpillars pupate and turn into butterflies.  We can’t wait to see what color the butterflies are!  We will release the butterflies into the Kincaid Garden in May.

We modeled food webs and food chains this 9 weeks.  Next, the fourth graders learned about animal adaptations.  Here are some of the students “Eating Like a Bird”.

Then we studied forces and Newton’s Laws of Motion using balloon rockets.

Fifth grade has been learning about Classification of Living Organisms and Heredity.  We used what we learned about the parts of animal and plant cells to go through a process to extract the DNA from bananas.  In May, we will get the microscopes out again and obsere pond water to see what microscopic organisms we can find.

# Third 9 Weeks

Thank you to all of the families who have sent in donations to the science lab!

# Kindergarten

The kindergarteners completed a lesson in the science lab on “The 5 Senses”.  We tried to identify objects by just their sound, smell or feel.  Then we used our 5 senses to describe an OREO cookie.  YUM!

They also learned how to keep their teeth healthy by brushing “Dinosaur teeth” in February.

The next lesson for kindergarteners will be on Rocks.  They will be looking at a collection of interesting and unique rocks, sorting rocks by different characteristics, and “panning” for their own collection of rocks.

First grade is learning about what plants and animals need to survive.  The first graders helped to plant our first crop in the new Kincaid Garden.  They planted radishes, carrots, broccoli, spinach and lettuce.  Can’t wait to see what we harvest in May!

Next they will have a lesson on the different parts of the plant and learn that we eat roots, stems, leaves, flowers and seeds.

# Second grade used Oreo cookies to model the phases of the moon.  What a delicious way to learn!

Third grade has been learning all about the habitats of Georgia.   Kincaid is so lucky to have our own nature trail.  We took some walks on our nature trail to identify habitats of animals common to the Piedmont region.

In our next two units we will be exploring heat energy and magnets in the lab!  Third graders will experiment to see how heat moves through different states of matter.  We will learn about repulsion and attraction,  explore magnetic fields and making temporary magnets.

Last month Fourth grade explored the night sky!  They began by learning about stars and constellations.  Students made their own pinhole constellation viewers.  They also learned about the phases of the moon.  Next, we will discover the reason for the seasons (revolution and the axis) and what makes day & night (rotation).

Fifth graders had an electrifying experience in science last month.  They learned about circuits and electromagnets.  We learned the difference between a series and parallel circuit and made electromagnets.  They tested their electromagnets to see how strong they were.

Now the fifth graders are using our microscopes to look at cells.  They made slides of onion skin cells and human cheek cells to see some of the differences between plant and animal cells.

# “Help Us Grow in Science”

## WOW, What a great group of volunteers showed up for our Garden Work Day!

THANKS TO OUR GARDEN VOLUNTEERS…  Have you seen the Science Lab garden beds? They look great now, thanks to the combined efforts of all our wonderful Kincaid family volunteers.  Here are some of our volunteers in action.

# RECENT SCIENCE LABS

## Kincaid Garden Update

Great News!  We have received one of the Keep Cobb Beautiful “Dig’n the Dirt” grants.  These funds will help us repair the garden beds and fill them with soil.  Our Garden Committee will be meeting on Thursday, December 13th, at 9:00 to discuss our spring plans for the garden.  If you are interested in helping please contact Bridget Nastasi, Kincaid Science Instructor.

# Kindergarten

The kindergarten class visited the science lab last month to learn about living and nonliving things.  They sorted items into two groups: living and nonliving, and learned the characteristics of living things.  Thank you to our parent volunteers who helped out in the lab!

The first graders came to the science lab this month to learn about magnets.  They did experiments to see what is attracted to a magnet and learned that a magnet’s force can be felt through different objects like our hands.  They also used magnets to attract and repel toy cars.

Second grade spent time in the science lab learning about forces.  They experimented with how pushes and pulls can move an object.

Third grade used the scientific method to perform an experiment to prove there is iron in Total cereal.

## Fourth grade has been studying how light can be reflected or refracted.

The fifth grade classes have been studying Matter.  They have been learning about physical and chemical changes.

We have a need for the following items in the science lab.  If you wish to donate any of them please drop them off on the counter in the science lab or in the mailroom with a label “for science lab”.

Thank you!

Science Lab Needs:

matchbox cars

8 count crayons

sponges

2 ounce clear plastic condiment cups

# October 2012

`  `
`Kincaid Garden   `

Wow!  I want to thank all of the volunteers who came to Kincaid on Hands on Atlanta day and helped clean up our garden area.  I am very excited to begin a garden project at Kincaid.  I hope to make the Kincaid Garden into an extension of not only the Science Lab but also of all of our other classrooms.  Watch for news for updates on the garden as we begin to plant the garden beds.

Also, a big thank you to all of you who have donated supplies to the science lab!

Kindergarten

Kindergarten is returning to the Science Lab later this month for a lesson on Living vs. Nonliving.

Yum!  We made ice cream this month to learn about how freezing and melting points and changing between different states of matter.

Second grade will be coming to the science lab for a lesson on Forces and Pushes and Pulls.

In third grade we learned the difference between mold and cast fossils.  We even made our own “fossils” to bring home.  Last week the third grade classes performed an experiment to see if there is iron in the cereal we eat.  Ask them about their results!