Mrs. Fink’s 4th Graders have been focusing on energy in science class. In order to understand the connection between kinetic (movement) energy, potential (stored) energy, and how they each contribute to mechanical energy (the work or action that is done) we decided to make chain reaction machines. In the video attached, you are able to see that we used materials found in our very own classroom like books, rulers, and paper.
By working in teams, each group was able to create a chain reaction machine with various steps. We created a video to show all of our hard work and collaboration. However, what our video doesn’t show is the persistence and commitment the students had to this project. Each group had to set-up their projects numerous times to get the books or blocks to fall just right. As you can see sometimes a little nudge or help was needed even after many tries – but the students did not give up! This was the most impressive part of the project. The students really learned how much effort was needed to create a successful project and even with the difficulties, they continued to persevere.
Additionally, as a class we started to discuss how we can relate chain reactions to our own lives beyond science class. One of our recent classroom goals is to strive to practice kindness towards ourselves and then also to others. By doing this we are hoping that it can influence the behavior of people around us – like a chain reaction.
By: Mrs. Fink, 4th Grade