The children have been interested in exploring science these last few weeks. We noticed the children were drawn to the river rocks laid out on the table one morning. K-L began to feel the rocks with her hands. “These are hard, what are they concrete? Metal? I can’t break them, wood chips are easy to break”. K-L took her time feeling each rock and comparing them to different materials. N decided to join K-L. “Wood chips are not hard, the rocks are so hard. I can’t even break the rock, it's so hard!” - N.
The next day, we found a book on rocks and minerals and placed it next to the river rocks and some natural rocks from outside. K began flipping through the book. “Look Sarah! We can grow something” K said to one of our educators, pointing to a page in the book that said “grow your own crystals”. “Can we make this?” K asked. We got our supplies and got to work! The children grabbed the container, salt, pencil, and string for the experiment. Working together, D, E, R, B, and K stirred salt into warm water and attached a string to a pencil. The pencil was placed over the container for the crystals to form on. “Can we check it after school?” D eagerly asked. The children are all so excited to watch their crystals grow!
After the long weekend, we checked on our crystals. The string crystal ended up not working, so we tried another experiment! Using borax, pipe cleaners and water, the children were able to watch crystals form over the pipe cleaners. Our second crystal experiment was a huge success! “It looks so sparkly” - L. The children said the crystals looked like candy that they couldn't eat. They were all so excited to take it home to show their grown-ups!
The next day, K found a picture of a rock in our rocks and minerals book. “Can we make this?” K asked. We went to look in our art cupboard to see what we could use to make this rock. We found colourful tissue paper and construction paper that “looks like the same colours”. K, E, and L each made their own rock craft, using the book as a reference. They glued each piece of paper on one by one, taking their time to make sure there were no gaps. After their craft dried, we displayed them on our art cupboard so their friends at school could see their creations!
Miranda Lange RECE, Sarah Whitehouse RECE