First Day Introduction and Procedural Thinking

Today your child began an exciting science program in their classroom offered by Science from Scientists. SfS is a Boston-based, non-profit organization that strives to improve science and technology attitudes and aptitudes. We send real scientists into the classroom during school every other week to teach exciting, fun, and curriculum-relevant science lessons. We will be visiting your child’s classroom every other week throughout the school year. We will bring engaging, informative, and stimulating hands-on lessons with us to supplement the school’s science curriculum.

Mr. Mavros and Mr. Hart will be the scientific instructors for the students at the Browne School this academic year. Mr. Mavros is earning his Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry from MIT. His area of research is in computational chemistry working with testing batteries. Mr. Hart received his degree in Biochemistry and studied multiple neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s Disease. They are both very excited to get the students exploring science in a hands-on atmosphere. 

For our first lesson, we looked at how to create and follow clear, ordered plans in life. Being able to provide a detailed, precise plan that others can follow can be challenging.  A plan that contains all the information needed to replicate an experiment includes three parts: a list of materials needed, a set of instructions on how to use these materials, and descriptions of the intermediate results.

In today’s activity, students got the chance to practice giving precise instructions.  Each student received a bag containing two identical sets of construction blocks.  Using one set of the colorful construction blocks, students were given 10 minutes to build a creation of their choosing and write a set of instructions detailing each step of the building process.  The purpose of this was for each student to write down instructions that are detailed enough so that others could replicate their models.  Once the students were done building and writing, they passed their instructions and blocks on to classmates to build by following the directions. Afterwards they compared the originals to the recreations and were able to see how more detailed and precise instructions had led to more accurate results.

As a class we talked about ways students could improve their directions to make it easier for another person to follow.  Using precise locations, like centered or on the left, and specific shapes, colors and sizes to identify pieces were some of the ideas that students came up with to help improve their directions.

Please check the Classroom Post on our website regularly to read about the science activities that your child is participating in and to view photos from your child’s classroom.

Keep in Touch with Science From Scientists!
How to view your child’s Classroom Post:
1. Visit our website at: https://www.sciencefromscientists.org/for-families
2. Click on the link for See inside the classroom.
3. Select your school/grade from the list.
4. Enter the password: SFS2016
. Submit the form then save a bookmark to skip these steps next time!

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