Planting Seeds of Science

Project summary

Arrangements were made with the local elementary schools. Supplies were ordered. Parent and student volunteers were recruited. Pre-survey assessments were sent to the schools to gauge student interest in science.

Each student tie-dyed a shirt. After the activity, the students gathered in small groups to discuss different branches of science, what makes up matter, and how matter changes, both physically and chemically. They also took a post-survey assessment to gauge their reaction to the activity and science. Over the next few days, they viewed a PowerPoint presentation that reviewed what was discussed in their small groups. A week or so after the activity, students completed a worksheet to gauge what they remembered about the day.

Outcomes

  1. 81% of the second grade students were able to correctly identify a picture of an atom.
  2. 66% of the second graders were able to correctly identify a picture of a physical change.
  3. 71% of the second graders were able to correctly identify a picture of a chemical change.
  4. Pre- and post-activity surveys showed that this activity was a positive experience for the students. Students reported more excitement and less anxiety toward scientific concepts.

Tips for similar projects

This kind of project strengthens relationships between institutions. Much collaboration, communication, and organization is needed for the day to be successful. This project also takes many volunteers. We had high school students, parents, and teachers helping with every stage of the activity from set-up to clean-up.

Next steps

We plan to continue the outreach of introducing science to the elementary school students in our area via science days such as these.

Materials produced