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PERISCOPE template
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PERISCOPE template

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A simple A4 template that allows students to make a small but useable periscope, you will need the mirror card to glue onto the periscope. Challenges to make them longer...ie make an extension tube...does not need to be square! could be tin foil tube etc...periscope is cut in half and the ends slipped over the extension tube. I have had students make a "sea" out of tables, they crawl around underneath and pop up a periscope in gaps between tables to look around.
CRATERS
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CRATERS

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A set of experiments designed to get students thinking about possible VARIABLES that may make craters bigger or smaller. This can lead to a full investigation once the student has chosen a "good" (more controlable variable)
The biggest lungs
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The biggest lungs

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This is the bar chart that students end up with after having completed the excercise and lung capacity activity. It can lead nicely on from the "balloon" bar chart (if you chose to use it) for younger/less able students...or even more able but a "twist" on bar charts (see how big are your lungs)
Timing challenge
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Timing challenge

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Simple timing tasks using a stopwatch. Everyday activities are timed to see how long they take and to see how close the student's previous estimates were.
Light quiz
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Light quiz

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Short simple quiz that allows you to judge the understanding and level of your students
FORCES powerpoint
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FORCES powerpoint

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Simple visual introduction to FORCES should generate discussion and relevance to student's lives. All slides have lovely movements and funny stuff
Acids & Alkalis
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Acids & Alkalis

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This is a tried, tested and improved assesment that has worked well with many students. The assesment is based on the old NC levels 1 to 5 (subdivided into a,b & c)but you can convert into any level description you need, frankly a staged 1 to 5 indicator is as useful as ever whatever you may wish to call it. I have devised a sytem which gives you a measure of success: each question can score 0, 1 or 2, if a student scores a 2 then you can say they understand the concept fully, score of 1 they understand partially, 0 means they may have experienced the concept but do not understand it much if at all. The support sheet can be used as a teaching scheme for staff. Split into 3 columns the first column states what concept is being testsd, 2nd column tells you what is required for a score og 1, 3rd column what is required for a score of 2. I have used this sytem to calculate a score for students...if they achieve 75% or more then I believe you can say they have achieved that level. Good luck
Get the salt
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Get the salt

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Students are given some dirty salt (salt +sand/soil..whatever you wish) I have even simulated urine(orange juice) to reinforce the plight of poor hygeine in some countries. The sheet takes students through the 3 steps of purifying the salt. The final step of evaporating the water using evaporating basins can be tricky if the heat is left on too long.....if no bunsens/heat is available you can just leave the solutions to "dry out" naturally..you can get nice crystals forming over a couple of days. Why not take the students out for fish and chips later on (keeping a sample of your salt to sprinkle on your chips)
Parachuting eggs
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Parachuting eggs

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A simple activity which gets students thinking about how things fall and how they can be protected when they hit the floor
Does it burn?
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Does it burn?

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Lovely activity, not for the faint hearted. Give students a selection of materials which they examine and describe simply. They then (with the required H&S) heat the material/object using a bunsen(roaring or yellow...you decide), tongs, observe and describe the material afterwards. I have done this expt using tea light candles in a classroom, with bench mats and an extra pair of eyes it worked beautifully. This promotes many aspects of chemical changes, durability, suitability etc etc of materials for specific tasks
Materials quiz
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Materials quiz

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A simple quiz with well thought out and tested questions intended to stimulate thought and discussion about materials and their properties. There is no mark scheme as I have found that students come up with unexpected but valid answers which can engage the class and foster interest
Can you hear it?
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Can you hear it?

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With limited resorces this gives students an opportunity to test out "sound proofing" You just need a table, paper clip, ruler and a selection of materials that may be useful in blocking out the noise from a noisy neighbour Give the students as much guidance as you like or alternatively, as I prefer, just give them the limited resorces and tell them to devise a "fair" test. Potential for discussion, competition and looking silly walking around with ear protectors made out of the winning material
Using a microscope
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Using a microscope

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Worksheet that enables students to draw what they see under the microscope, suggested samples are on the sheet but of course you can add your own or even leave some blank for students to suggest. I have had students hunting for insects, leaves are popular, worms, ants are tricky but petri dishes are helpful, dust, finger nail dirt, etc etc Students love to enter the world of the microscopic..be prepared to allow a couple or 3 lessons to let their imagination soar.
Growing seeds
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Growing seeds

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I love these activities...you must be prepared for all sorts of ideas from the students...but more importantly allow them to try it out..PLEASE DO NOT tell them "this won't work because" and then give them all the answers that are required by law and the curriculum....let them excercise their own problem solving skills and love you for letting them try it out..in a controlled way of course. Basically they need to find out/ try out/ explore what conditions seeds need to germinate successfully I have had students burn some seeds with a bunsen as they had seen plants growing after a forest fire..indeed you can discuss thet some seeds need extreme heat before they germinate. Other ideas students have had: put in freezer overnight, soak in water, hit with rock, put in acid, keep in dark, keep in light, and so it goes on
Drawing small things
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Drawing small things

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Students use hand lenses, magnifiers, whatever you have available....this can lead to a "not fair" discussion as some students only have low magnification. The worksheet contains pictures of very small living things with varrying amounts of legs, antenae, wings, spots, colours...students must use the magnifier to draw as carefully as they can the pictures. The students can then mark their own efforts after you tell them what detail you expected and they should have spotted..be prepared for lots of moaning and a bit of banter.
My Teeth
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My Teeth

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A simple activity which could last a few lessons..depending on what you/the students find. Possible extra apparatus you could use: mirrors, cotton wool buds to help counting (don't use cocktail sticks unless you have a few hors spare to fill in the incident forms). The clear picture on the worksheet shows students which teeth are which and all they have to do is count their own and record the numbers. They can try on their own in pairs, use their tongue to keep track or cotton wool buds to "tap" the teeth as they count. A mirror is very useful. The activity usyually lends itself to much discussion regarding missing teeth, extra teeth, decay, bad breath, bacteria, diet etc. I like it because you can just watch the students find out about "themselves" remind them it is not a competition, unless you want it to be.
Forces quiz
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Forces quiz

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Short simple quiz that allows you to judge the understanding and level of your students
Find and sorting materials
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Find and sorting materials

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Simple worksheet that allows students to invstigate materials and their uses around school (at home for HW). Students can look at specific objects(chair) and write down what it seems to be from. Students are also encouraged to look for the material and say what it is used for...so that materials and properties are approached from both ways. Then the more tricky task of putting materials into groups, students can classify them in their own way..get ready for some unusual classification techniques. As an extension students can continue with materials/objects of their own choice..this usually introduces the student's own interests into scientific method.