Lab_13 Gillespie news, week of 8th September 2014

Applications are open for the Lab_13 Gillespie Management Team!

We would like to tell everybody that applications are open for Gillespie’s Lab_13 Management Team! If you go to Gillespie, and you are in Y5 (next term for Y6), we will be giving out application forms this week, and they will be expected to be handed in by the morning of Wednesday 17th September. We have attached the application form here Application form, so you can print it off if you need to.

We asked members of the current Management Team why you should apply, and they said:

“You should apply because you will get to help children with their science and it’s really fun!”
“I have gained more confidence, definitely, especially speaking in front of lots of people.”
“I have become better at science!”
“You will get help from the old committee to get you going in the first term.”

– Written by Alessandro and Henry, Y6

“What is Science?” and “Thinking like a Scientist” – Carole’s Bit

At Lab_13 Gillespie we want as much of the science that we do to be based around the children’s questions. As Scientist/Inventor in Residence here at Gillespie, I have spent much of my first week this term making sure that the children know what science is, and how to ask scientific questions!

This seems to be paying off, as my question wall is already starting to fill up with lots of brilliant scientific questions, and inventive ideas, some of which have already been investigated/created. Keep them coming in!

Here are two examples:

1. Five children in Y1 and Y2 wanted to know how to make potions. I invited them into Lab_13, along with five responsible children in Y5, who were their Lab Buddies to make sure that they stayed safe during experiments in the lab. After discussing what a potion is (between them, the children managed to work it out!), we considered how this linked with science and chemistry in particular, before considering the curious case of colour-changing cabbage.

Carole potion 1

Potion team

As you can see from the photos, plenty of experimenting took place – to find out which combinations of substances resulted in changes. At the end I checked whether they had noticed any patterns, and we recreated some of the most fun reactions:

Explosions 1

Explosions 5

2. During the introductory “Thinking Like a Scientist” session last week, I gave the children a fiendish challenge – to work out the interior construction of a mystery tube. This required the children to observe the tube, form a hypothesis about what was inside it, then to experiment with another tube and string to see whether they could recreate their results. Sumaya and Idil in Y5 asked to come back to Lab_13 as they didn’t have time during the session to work it out. I was very impressed as, rather than give up when their first design didn’t work, they wanted to try again until they succeeded. Which they eventually did! How did it make them feel? According to Sumaya, “It makes you feel really good to have worked it out, it’s something you can be proud of”

– Written by Carole, Scientist/Inventor in Residence

About lab13network

Lab_13 is a space in a school managed by pupils for pupils to conduct their own research and experiments driven by their curiosity, imagination and enthusiasm, and under the watchful supervision of a Scientist in Residence (not a teacher!!).
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