Category: Science

Science Update

Dear Parents,

Just a quick update on the content we are learning in science right now: We are studying light.

That means we are learning more about the way that color works, the way that light travels, and the way that light interacts with other materials. Your kids should be able to tell you about words like transmission, reflection and absorption. By the end of the week, they should also tell you the similarities and differences between transparent, translucent and opaque objects.

Hope this helps,

Bill Ferriter

Diffraction Glasses Coming Home Today.

Dear Parents,

Just a quick heads up to let you know that your kids are coming home today with diffraction glasses. They LOVE them.

You can learn more about how they work here:

http://64gnomes.blogspot.com/2017/12/hey-gnome-nation-need-proof-that-there_8.html

The reason I wanted you to know about the glasses is to be sure that they don’t stare at the sun — or other insanely bright lights — with their glasses on! The glasses do cool things with white light, but they are not protective — so if your kids look straight into an incredibly bright light with the glasses on, they will feel pain.

As an aside, take the glasses with you when you go look at Christmas lights in the neighborhood. You’ll dig them. And your kid SHOULD be able to explain the science behind the glasses to you all at the same time.

Hope this helps,

Bill Ferriter

Science Update

Dear Parents,

Just a quick update on science happenings:

Finishing up our study of heat: Over the last few weeks, we’ve been studying the way that heat transfers from one object to another. We’ve talked at length about conduction and convection and we will look closer at radiation as we get into our study of light. We are just now finishing up a project focused on conductors and insulators. Your students have designed a container to try to prevent an ice cube from melting.

All of those assignments can be found in Google Classroom. There are also a few fill in the blank handouts that serve as notes for your students. Those notes will come in handy as kids begin to prepare for any assessments that we take on this topic.

Moving into a study of light: Our next mini unit will be a study of light. We will be looking at how light travels, how it is converted into heat, and how colors work. The kids usually dig this mini study simply because light plays a major role in our lives but we don’t often think about exactly what it is or how it works.

There are a bunch of new grades posted in PowerSchools. Your students will be opening up Powerschool in Spartan Time today as a part of their three week grade check-in, so they should have a good sense of the scores that they are making and the ways that they can raise those scores. If you haven’t seen your child’s grades in a while, today would be a good day to ask them about it!

Hope this helps,

Bill Ferriter

New Science Grades Posted

Dear Parents,

A quick heads up: Students took their matter unit test on Wednesday of last week. They also recently submitted a lab on Solubility.

Those grades have been entered in the gradebook. They counted as summative assessments — which are heavily weighted in student averages.

There is a rework opportunity posted for the matter unit test in Google Classroom. Any student who scored less than an 80 on the test is eligible to complete the rework to raise their grade up to an 80.

I will introduce the rework opportunity in class tomorrow.

Hope this helps,

Bill Ferriter

Study for Science Test!

Just a reminder that there is a science test on Wednesday of this week covering all of the content in our Matter Unit.

We have been studying hard in class and will study again tomorrow — but it wouldn’t hurt for students to spend some time studying at home too.

There is both a traditional study guide (with answer key) and a digital Socrative test posted in Google Classroom.

Socrative looks VERY similar to the actual test kids will take on Wednesday. If students can do well on that, they should be able to do well on the actual exam, too.

Hope this helps,

Bill Ferriter

Science Update

Dear Parents,

Just a quick update on happenings in science class:

Finished our last matter unit concept: Yesterday in class, we finished studying our last concept for the matter unit by studying what happens to matter when it is heated. Students have a handout that they need to complete documenting several observations that they saw in class. That handout will be due on Monday or Tuesday of next week.

Began preparing for our end of unit assessment: Our end of unit assessment for matter will be held on Wednesday of next week. We’ve been doing a bunch of review for that assessment in class over the course of the week. We will continue with that review between now and Tuesday. There will be an official study guide posted in Google Classroom tomorrow, but in the meantime, students can be studying with Quizizz and Quizlet review materials posted in Google Classroom.

Two practice task grades going in averages: Students have two Quizizz review tasks that they must complete for a grade posted in Google Classroom. They may take the Quizizz tests as many times as they like to earn a score that they are proud of — but the work must be completed no later than Monday.

Solubility lab work due today: Last week in class, we completed a solubility lab. The writing for that lab is due today. Doublecheck with your students to see if they have turned it in.

Hope this helps,

Bill Ferriter

Science Update

Dear Parents,

Just a quick update on science happenings:

We are continuing to work through our unit on Matter. Specifically, we’ve been looking at the concept of solubility this week. Solubility means the ability to be dissolved — and it is a characteristic property of matter that allows scientists to identify unknown substances. Your students completed a mini-lab in class on Wednesday and will be working on the writing part for that lab in class today. It will be due sometime next week.

The final concept that we have to study in our matter unit is what happens to matter when it is heated. We will be working on that early next week. Then, your students will be taking their final exam on our matter unit.

Hope this helps,

Bill Ferriter

Science Supplies Needed

Dear Parents,

First, welcome back to school! Here’s to hoping that your trackout was amazing. Mine was long and busy — and I missed your kids! What a good bunch.

Second, we’ll be doing a mini-lab on solubility later next week. To pull that off, I could use a few supplies.

If you think you can help, here’s the Signup Genius.

Thanks in advance!
Bill Ferriter

Quick Science Update

Dear Parents,

First, here’s to hoping that you are well and happy as we move into the end of September and beginning of October! Track out is around the corner and I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t looking forward to it! I’m sure you are, too.

Second, here’s a few things happening in science:

We have moved into our study of matter. Specifically, we’ve been talking about the characteristics of matter and the structure of matter this week. We also began a short lab experience designed to introduce kids to density — one of the characteristic properties of matter. The kids usually dig our matter unit because there are lots of short, hands on experiences that go along with the concepts. To learn more about what is covered in the unit, you can look at this unit overview sheet.

I am making short review videos for our units. You can find them posted online here. The videos come out between two and three times a week and they are designed as a refresher of things that we have been studying in class. Consider checking the site out if you want to know more about the science that your kids are learning — and have your kids check them out if you want them to get a quick review of what they’ve been learning in class.

Hope this helps,

Bill Ferriter

Science Quiz on Friday

Dear Parents,

Just a quick heads up: Your kids will PROBABLY have a quiz on Friday on scientific method vocabulary.

It might be pushed until Tuesday because we’ve had a bunch of technical issues in the county over the last few days and it has been difficult to study for the test here at school.

Regardless, your students are required to know these words and definitions.

They can use this Quizlet to study, if you have internet access at home.

Hope this helps,

Bill Ferriter