By: Nicole Anderson
During the summertime things are a bit quiet in the ISEE Outreach Science Education Department at Discovery Gateway: The Children’s Museum of Utah. At least that’s how it was last year. This year it is a whole different story. This year, our Outreach Science Education Team, Lauren Fletcher, Phillip Evans, Laura England, and Nicole Anderson under the direction of our CEO, Maria Farrington have decided to adopt Jackson Elementary School in Salt Lake City. The plan is to work together and spread the word that science is fun!
In preparation for the summer school program the education team created a new curriculum that is educational, fun, and adaptable to all grades K-6. The curriculum ranges from a focus on habitat changes, physics, the universe, and wetlands. The summer school program runs for five weeks and began last Monday, June 10th with the team presenting a lesson in science about the adaptation and survival of animals that live in different habitats.
Different animals have adapted to certain habitats throughout the world. In order to help the students understand the meaning of adaptation they were to use their imagination to create and draw an animal. They were given six small papers with each one having a different characteristic of an animal such as a nose, tail, feet, eyes, a covering such as feathers or fur, and their habitat in which they call home.
For example the nose could have been one that was long and skinny, short and fat, slits for nostrils, or perhaps gills. The students were presented these same types of characteristics in each area. Webbed feet, long tails, insects, mammals, and fish that all lived in the desert or had feathers on their bodies.
As the children laughed and drew their animal the team taught them about where these animals may live, how they keep warm or cool, and whether or not they could swim or fly (or maybe even both.) We saw some of the craziest, wild animal creations and then we surprised the students and explained how learning about different habitats is part of science.
The students learned that science can be fun! They asked if we were coming back the next day and although we were saddened that we couldn’t go every day, we are thrilled to present our new curriculum to the students every Monday for the next four weeks. We can’t wait to see what next week brings as Phillp Evans presents his lesson on Physics as he hopes to have the force be with you.
Stay tuned for another week of science adventures!