The eighth graders settled in quickly to the science class routines during the first few weeks of school. They were given the eighth grade science book called Glencoe Earth Science, yellow science folders, and little blue spelling books to use for notebooks.
After relearning how to cover their science books, the children reviewed the scientific process and learned how scientists work like detectives by gathering evidence to solve mysteries in the natural world. Ask your child how scientists used clues from drowned forests in Washington and New Hampshire to a learn about a historic devastating tsunami in Japan and Pleistocene glaciation in New England.
The first lab that the children undertook this year was an exploration of how changes to a pendulum's mass length, or angle of release would affect the period of the pendulum’s swing. As a follow up, Abbe Murphy graciously hosted a field trip to the Lyme Congregational Church. At the church, the boys and girls saw how the pendulum regulated the antique clock and bell system high in the church tower. As bonuses, the kids had fun playing Quiz Bowl and learned a little bit about the architectural history of the church.
Currently the children are leaning about matter. We began at the atomic level with a review of the parts of an atom. Isotopes and Ions were investigated and types of atomic bonds were discussed. The kids made simple models of helium and lithium atoms. An on-going lab is an investigation into the battery life of Duracell and Ace D cell batteries in common flashlights. The children have been testing these every class period since the beginning of the year. After many hours the batteries continue to work.
As the quarter proceeds the kids do several investigations into properties of matter, particularly density and buoyancy. These concepts will be helpful as when we begin our study of minerals.
Please check in with your child about science assignments. These are posted on Google Classroom. If they need help, please encourage your child to see me. I am available during the call back period, morning break, from 7:45 to 8:00 every morning, and after school.