• Week of November 27, 2017

    STEM Science 8

    Between now and Christmas Break, we will be exploring our place in the Solar System and Universe. Specific topics include the reason for the seasons, moons phases and tides, and the Big Bang. There are a number of astronomical events coming up including a supermoon and meteor shower. Check out the link to the NY Times Astronomical Calendar in the "Useful Links" Section (you can even download calendar to iPhone/Android).

    Geo Technology 7

    Over the next two weeks your students will be working on a very timely topic, designing structures that are resistant to the impacts of hurricanes. We will begin the week modeling hurricane formation and looking at the impacts hurricanes have on our society. Students will then be tasked with designing and building a structure that can withstand the high winds and flooding associated with hurricanes while working within the constraints of a materials budget. Watching the news about the impacts associated with Hurricanes Harvey and Irma with your student would be benificial as they think about the importance of natural hazard mitigation.  

     

    Week of November 13, 2017

    STEM Science 8

    Students are finishing up finals preparations to race their mouse trap powered cars. The students never cease to amaze me with their engineering design solutions. On Friday students will be examining the motion of super worms. Next week will be tying up some loose ends and finishing up our unit on physics (although the concepts learned will be utilized as begin our exploration of astronomy and chemistry). Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

    Geo Technology 7

    Welcome to Marking Period 2 Geo Technology. A welcome letter and syllabus went home of Friday, please review with your child. Over the next few days, we will be working on collaboration and communication through several team building/problem solving activities. Students will be introduced to the engineering design and project planning process as they must complete their tasks while adhering to specific constraints. They will be building a pyramid out of plastic cups, a tower out of paper and saving a worm whose boat has capsized. Ask your student about what constraints they faced as they worked to find solutions to these problems. 

     

    Week of October 23, 2017

    STEM Science 8

    Last week your students finished up their catapults. I was beyond impressed with the diligence and resilience the students displayed while designing, building and refining their catapults. This week we will be connecting speed and acceleration to our exploration of energy and forces. Next week students will be designing and testing mousetrap powered cars.

     Geo Technology 7

    Students are exploring how we can conserve and protect water resources this week. They will be making a working model of the water cycle, getting outside to gather soil profiles, examining runoff and, as a summative activity, designing and building a water filter to turn polluted water into potable. 

     

    Week of October 10, 2017

    STEM Science 8

    This week students will be designing and building their catapults. There ultimate goal is to be able to shoot a velcro covered foam ball four meters to land on a felt target. Anyone can design a catapult to launch a projectile as far as possible but engineering an accurate catapult is a real challenge. I know your students are up for it. Ask them about their design and how construction is coming along. This Thursday and Friday students are welcome to stay until the late bus if the want to continue working.

     Geo Technology 7

    Students are still working on their Canva infographics. The ability to use Canva will really benefit them as it makes producing posters, brochures, etc. for other classes super easy.

     

    E-A-G-L-E-S EAGLES!  

     

    Week of October 2, 2017

    STEM Science 8

    Last week students began their exploration of physics by examining potential and kinetic energy via an online simulation (PhET in links section) and a hands-on pendulum lab. They graphed and analyzed their data utilizing Google Sheets. This week the will be designing and conducting their own experiment that exhibits the relationship between potential and kinetic energy. We will be introducing the catapult project at the end of the week. While materials will be provided (an all work done in class), students can bring material from home if the like (do not buy stuff! scrap wood, PVC, etc. works great). Ask your students about how potential and kinetic energy relates to the sports they play.

    Geo Technology 7

    Last week students modeled how wave action affects beach erosion using wave pools. This week we will examine the features they observed, focusing on rip currents. Students will use Canva to produce a inforgraphic that could be used at beaches to education swimmers about rips, why they are an important part of beach dynamics and the hazards posed. If you have time, take a walk on the beach with your student and ask them to identify different features on the beach and what they tell us about erosion. 

     

     

    Week of September 18, 2017

    STEM Science 8

    This week students will be building balsa wood propeller planes to explore how rubber band tension affects flight distance. They will learn how to create trend lines based on their data to make predictions. This is the last activity where they will be collecting data and graphing by hand. On Friday, they will be finding the percent mass by color of candy corn. Using Google Sheets (like Excel), they will create a data table to record their measurements, learn how use formulas to find percent and present their data with a circle graph.

    Geo Technology 7

    The students have been diligently working on designing and constructing their hurricane proof structures. They will continue building this week and will be testing their designs on Thursday. We will take a break from building one day this week to take advantage of Hurricane Jose and examine the impacts it is having on the Jersey Coast. We will also discuss storm preparedness and safety.

     

    Week of September 11, 2017

    STEM Science 8

    On Friday the students built and tested straw rockets. The experiment was designed to be imperfect. This week they will be reading an article on a substance that is frequently studied, coffee. They will examine how the results of coffee experimentation (it's seems every other month coffee is either deemed a "superfood" or a carcinogen) are often invalid due to confounding variables. They will apply this new knowledge to how they could improve the validity of the straw rocket experiment. Later in the week we will attempt to answer the age old question, "how many licks does it take to get to the center of a Tootsie Roll Pop?" Through this activity, students will learn the importance of creating an experiment with results that are reproducible and presenting data via a graph.

    Geo Technology 7

    Over the next two weeks your students will be working on a very timely topic, designing structures that are resistant to the impacts of hurricanes. We will begin the week modeling hurricane formation and looking at the impacts hurricanes have on our society. Students will then be tasked with designing and building a structure that can withstand the high winds and flooding associated with hurricanes while working within the constraints of a materials budget. Watching the news about the impacts associated with Hurricanes Harvey and Irma with your student would be benificial as they think about the importance of natural hazard mitigation.  

    Week of September 5, 2017

    STEM Science 8/Geo Technology 7

    This week, in both classes, we will be working on collaboration and communication through several team building/problem solving activities. Students will be introduced to the engineering design and project planning process as they must complete their tasks while adhering to specific constraints. They will be building a pyramid out of plastic cups, a tower out of paper and saving a worm whose boat has capsized. Ask your student about what constraints they faced as they worked to find solutions to these problems.