Monday, March 29, 2010

Sink or Float Experiment

Ryan missed 'boat day' at preschool last week, when he stayed home with pink eye. I was planning to make up the sink or float experiment that he missed, and was so excited to get some inspiration from Allie at No Time For Flashcards

As you can see, we collected different items from around the house and yard to test their buoyancy. Before Ryan would place each item in the water he would make a prediction about whether he thought it would sink or float. I'm always surprised when we do experiments at how well he asks questions, makes predictions and assumptions and tests hypotheses.

For the first few items I was recording his predictions and outcomes. Then I realized that it was unnecessary since he wasn't getting anything out of the written chart. I quickly abandoned it to focus on the more important conversation we were having.

After we tested our items we used Allie's idea and tested each item again inside a plastic egg. We talked about how the eggs were like boats that helped our objects to float. When Ryan made the hypothesis that anything that fits in an egg would float I had him fill an egg with rocks. As the rock filled egg sank we talked about weight and density.

We are going to get this experiment out again soon to try an idea that his preschool teacher incorporated. She had the kids test a ball of play-dough, and then turn their ball into a boat and try it again.

1 comment:

  1. This is a cute experiment, and I liked the egg shakers above too. I plan to do all of them once grandparents leave and we have more free time again.