Today I had the opportunity to attend a school who were having a science family afternoon. My role on this day was to help and engage in the activities and investigations the children were doing. It was based with a reception class and the “science ambassadors” from Year 6 were helping the children and running their activities. As this day was a family day, the children’s parents or carers where welcome to come and see what the children were doing, as well as work alongside them in accomplishing the activities.
The activities I observed and carried out are as follows.
Bubble activity – are bubbles always round? This was an activity were child had to use different shaped utensils to blow bubbles and see if they were still round.
Plant headband – The children had to explore the Field for different plants and flowers on a list then stick them to their head band.
Bug scavenger hunt – The children had a piece of paper and had to search the Field and environment for particular insect and create a tally of how many they found.
Leaf and Tree hunt – The children had a piece of paper and had to find the leaves and tress on their sheet and say where they were in the school.
Paper clips – do paper clips sink? This activity the children had to put a paper clip in different amounts of water and identify beforehand if they would sink or not.
Fairy cakes – What happens if we remove an ingredient? A teacher was creating fairy cakes and each time she would change or remove and ingredient. The children had to predict what would happen and then identify the different of a normal cake and one that has been altered. The teacher explained about the chemical reactions that took place such as the bicarbonate soda reacting with the bubbles to make the cake rise.
Pond – The children were given fishing nets and searched the pond for insects or plants. The children would put their finding in s bucket which would be put back in the pond at the end. There was an identifying sheet where the children could identify what they had found.
Due to the afternoon being busy there was not an opportunity to take images ourselves. However, a teacher was able take some images of the other trainees and myself engaging in the afternoon.
The afternoon was fun and engaging and offered children a vast amount of opportunities to be hands on with science. The skills the children used where: observing, predicting, choice, experiment, questioning, creativity, social and communication skills.
The benefits of having the family day, instead of a simple experiments afternoon, is it offers time for the children to work with their families and also offers parents time to identify if their children are having fun and learning. The afternoon would have had a lot of planning and organisation to ensure the day is a success for example, resources, risk assessments and safeguarding.
From this experience I have developed a tool kit of activities for science as well as incorporating the outdoor environment. It has also shown me how the early year’s foundation (EYFS) incorporates science/understanding the world, into their lessons. As I am a science and EYFS specialist, this afternoon has given me ideas and an opportunity to observe how science can be used in an EYFS setting. I enjoyed the experience and feel that it has supported me in my professional development as well as subject knowledge.
(Images from the teacher will be added to this post when received).