Wheels in Motion: A Fun Activity to Investigate Simple Machines and Linear Motion

Science is one of my favourite subjects to teach.  Although I love Language Arts, I really enjoy teaching math and science because students have so many opportunities to take part in fun, engaging, and educational activities that allow them to discover concepts and investigate different ideas.

As Elita previously mentioned, we have created another science unit to address the Ontario science curriculum when teaching a combined grade 4/5 class.

The following investigative activity is part of that unit, but it would be a great activity to use with students from grades 4-8 either as a way to introduce or review simple machines and motion.  I think it will be a fun way to review some key concepts with my grade eight students before we delve into systems in action and students design, build, test, and present their own devices.

In this activity, students will work in small groups to investigate both simple machines and linear movement.  The activity begins as a whole class activity where simple machines are discussed, to a small group investigation.  First, students will examine the car and layout of the experiment to investigate several simple machines. Next, in order to observe linear movement, the car will be allowed to travel down a ramp.  Finally, students will demonstrate how changes to the mass of the cart will then affect its linear movement.

Just click on the image below!

wheels in motion

Place Value for Middle Grades

Place ValueIt is essential for students to keep practicing concepts that have been introduced to them during class time.  A fantastic way is through centre activities and games.  Here is a great game for students to keep practicing the concepts of place value.  Included is a place value chart (from Millions to Thousandths), 24 cards with numbers in written form and an answer key.  It could easily be used as a game between students, friendly competition is a great motivator!  It could also be used as a means for independent practice.  Laminate the cards so they can be used continuously and will withstand wear and tear!  We hope that you will find this product useful!  Just click on the image above to be brought to the product page.

Just a reminder that we have other centre activities available for your classroom as well.

 

Grade 4/5 Science Unit: Pulleys and Gears & Forces acting Upon Structures and Mechanisms

Gr 4:5 badgeWe have been hard at work!  Here is another great science unit for Grades 4/5.  Our first unit on Habitats and Communities and Human Organ Systems was a great success.  With great feedback from other teachers, we know that you find our products engaging, thorough and distinguished!

This new unit is a cross curricular Gr. 4/5 Science Unit  which allows teachers to meet the Ontario Science curriculum expectations all the while teaching a split grade!  Our science unit: Pulleys and Gears (4) & Forces Acting Upon Structures and Mechanisms(5)  combines the following overall big ideas:

  • Machines, mechanisms, and structures are designed to improve efficiency or simplify tasks
  • Forces act on and within structures and mechanisms
  • Mechanical systems have various impacts on society and the environment

Our Lessons include the following:

  • Learning centres: students work in small groups or individually to rotate between four centres over the course of the activity (four types of centre activities: technology, reading/writing activity, creative response, and a fun or hands-on activity);
  • Whole class lesson/discussion followed by either small group activities or whole class activity

Our unit is cross-curricular and integrates the following subjects:

  • Language Arts (Reading, Writing, Oral Communication, Media Literacy)
  • Math
  • 21st Century Learning
  • Art

We have many activities that are both engaging and active.  Differentiated instruction is also key and diverse assessment methods are incorporated.  We hope you find this unit useful for your classroom.

Here is a preview of our Gr 4/5 Science Unit.  Click on the picture above and you will be taken right to the full product!

Super Duper Donut Fun! Circle Investigations Using Donuts!

In a previous post, I mentioned how my students have been learning about the circumference and area of a circle.  We have been doing several activities in our math journals, completing math centres for extra practice, and reviewing for our test.  Since this has been a really fun unit and my students have been doing well, I decided to have a fun and rewarding end of unit activity.

We will be investigating the radius, diameter, circumference, and area of a circle by measuring donuts! The following booklet contains the teacher resource, student booklets (two versions using “donut” and “doughnut”), and donut images if you cannot or choose not to use actual donuts in the activity.

Click on the image below!

super duper donut badge

The Circumference and Area of a Circle: Student Learning Centres

When we return to school next week, my students and I will continue to explore the circumference and area of a circle.  We had begun to work on circumference prior to Christmas holidays and my students seem to be grasping the concepts well.  We did a GREAT activity in our math journals (I’ll post that soon) and that helped them to understand Pi, circumference, radius, diameter, and the circumference formula.  We will work on the area of a circle when we return.  After introducing the concept of area through a few math journal activities (more on the next week), we’re going to amalgamate, explore, and review these concepts through math centres.  I’ve created the following math centres to help students apply the skills and concepts they are learning about circles and have some extra practice activities.  Student worksheets are included in this package.

There are five math centres:

  • Reviewing the Circumference and Area of a Circle
  • Circumference Extra Practice
  • Area of a Circle Extra Practice
  • Calculating Radius and Diameter
  • Circumference and Area Word Problems

Students will take part in the following activities:

  • extra practice questions
  • practice using proper problem solving format (record given information from the question, formula, calculations, and final statement)
  • solving word problems
  • working backwards using algebra to determine the radius and diameter when given the area or circumference
  • developing their own word problems to trade and solve with a partner
  • review sheets to aid in recapping and studying

Just click on the image below!

circumference and area

The Tuesday 12: 12 Fun, Festive, and {FREE} Christmas Activities from TPT!

12 free christmas tpt activities

On this week’s edition of The Tuesday 12, we have rounded up 12 festively fantastic Christmas activities from TeachersPayTeachers.com.  The best part?  All the resources are FREE! Enjoy!  I’ve included the product overview from the description for each resource to help you determine which products suit your students best. Also, don’t forget to check out the other awesome products these teachers have in their TPT stores!

1. Gingerbread Fact Family by Tina’s Teaching Treasures (for grades 2 and 3)

“A FREE product to help your students learn about fact families and the inverse properties of addition and subtraction!
Great for Related Facts, Fact Families, and Addition and Subtraction! Perfect for a winter center, Christmas center, or gingerbread unit!
Included:
2 Posters to explain fact families and leave up for student reference
2 sheets (1 sheet if you double side) for student practice
3 pages for “Craftivity”
Pictures of Craftivity
1 Page of flashcard templates”

2. ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas-I Have Who Has by MrHughes (for grades 3-7)

“Who hasn’t heard the classic poem “A Visit from St. Nicholas” by Clement C. Moore?
This fun and interactive activity will have your students begging to play again and again as they try to beat their best time by reading fluently and more quickly each time.
The poem has been divided into 28 cards in a “I have, Who Has” fashion. Students will have to listen carefully as they only get the 3 or 4 words in poem ahead of their lines.”

3. Christmas Elf Application by Kindergarten Squared (for pre-K to gr 2)

“This cute freebie has your little elves applying for 1 of 3 jobs in the: Elf Toy Workshop, Elf Bakery, or Elf Gift Wrapping. This is a great activity that ties in with the Common Core opinion/persuasion writing standard!”

4. New Year’s Resolution Friendly Letter by Primary Paradise (for K to gr 3)

“What a better way to talk about the New Year than to let your students make their own New Year’s Resolution, or goal!
Student will practice their friendly letter writing skills and will make New Year’s resolutions for the coming year. They can write to a friend, parent, or even to themselves!
This packet includes:
Directions on how to Use
A New Year’s Resolution Poster
Sample New Year’s Resolution Letter
Kindergarten Letter Formats in which students can draw first
First Grade Letter Formats
Second & Third Grade Letter Formats”

5. Snow Day Snowman Writing Mini-Pack by TeacherMomof3 (for K to gr 2)

“Students will have snow much fun with this little writing pack! Use in your writing center, for homework, or in small groups!
Contents:
~Page 3- Have students write a description or a story for the picture.
~Page 4– Extra stationery page
~Page 5- Finish the writing stem
~Page 6- students write what they think the snowman is saying in the speech cloud.”

6. Free Packet: We Are Kind Kids {Random Acts of Kindness} by A Year of Many First (for K to gr 8)

“Have your students learn all about the importance of paying it forward with this packet!”

7. Christmas Puns: Puns from the North—Santa Takes the Pole Position by Margaret Whisnant (for gr 4 to 8)

“PUNS FROM THE NORTH–SANTA TAKES THE POLE POSITION is a giggle-powered collection of riddle puns about Santa and his life at the North Pole. Youngsters will enjoy revving up their punnybones to go searching for each riddle’s pun-filled answer from a choice of four possible responses.
This activity has two parts with twenty items each.
Full answer keys included. Eight pages including the cover and links to other items.”

8. Christmas Holiday Logic Puzzle by Lindsay Perro (for gr 3 to 8)

“This fun activity will keep your students thinking as they try to figure out which gift each child received!”

9. Christmas and Winter Themed Word Problems by Runde’s Room (for gr 5 to 7)

“This file contains 14 Christmas and winter themed math word problems that cover a variety of concepts and skills. Each word problem is displayed on beautiful festive background. These problems can be projected from the computer or placed under the document camera for all students to see during bell work or in a lesson. They could also be laminated and used in a math center. Answers are also included.”

10. Christmas Freebie: 12 Point of View Improv Cards for Christmas by Krystal Mills (for gr 5 to 7)

“This download contains 12 point of view improv cards, each with a Christmas theme, to engage your students.
Students will love speaking from unique points of view with this fun improv activity. Through completing this activity, they’ll develop more of an understanding of what it means to write from different points of view. Hopefully they will then take this back into their own writing! It’s a fun, interactive activity to do closer to Christmas time.”

11. What’s Your Favorite Christmas Song? by Cooperative Learning 365 (for gr 3 to 8)

“Students decide on their favorite Christmas song and as a class graph the results. Students can then create their own graph and answer questions.”

12. Winter Holiday Write Away Writing Prompts by LittleRed (for gr 3 to 8)

“Winter Holiday Write Away! writing prompts. This set contains 25 different writing prompts, all related to winter holidays (e.g. Christmas, Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, as well as general ‘holiday’ prompts).”

Enjoy! Tune in next week for another edition of The Tuesday 12!