Saturday, October 6, 2012

The Life Cycle of a Snowman 2012


Last year I created a snowman for my classroom and it was a huge success! This year I made 2 snowmen for our entire 2nd grade. All of the students enjoyed watching their snowman change throughout the day. I put the full instructions and the recording page on a Google Document. 
For full instructions and the recording sheet click HERE.
First, I filled balloons with water and froze them.
Lay a plate on top to create a flat surface
Next, after they were frozen, I stacked them. The biggest on the bottom, medium in the middle, and the smallest on top. I used some salt to help the ice stick together. Finally, I added some cut out felt pieces for the eyes, nose, mouth and buttons!
Using salt helps melt the ice a little and create a rough surface for adhesion.

The 3 States of Matter

In the morning, the students named the snowman and predicted what would happen to it by the end of the day. Throughout the day we watched as the snowman changed from solid to liquid as the ice melted.
Our snowman's head fell off while we were at lunch . We also measured the water throughout the day and saw how the  water rose as the snowman melted.
At the end of the day, I put the remains of our snowman in a electric skillet and turned it into a gas!
Using an electric skillet allowed the snowman to melt more quickly. Once the water in the pan came to a boil we were able to see the gas as evaporation occurred!
The students recorded what they saw and drew pictures in the morning, after lunch, and at the end of the day. It was a fun way to learn about the 3 states of matter. There were  many opportunities to talk about how the atoms were staying still or moving in each state. This song by They Might Be Giants is an excellent visual for this concept. We also added hand and body motions. 
We ended our day by discussing how we could use this information in every day situations and we created a question.

**Check out this awesome sequencing activity page 
created by Lauren Lynes!