This morning one of our middle schools has four sessions of Energy with Andy Campbell at LearnNCO. Andy’s videoconferences are some of our favorite videoconferences. He mixes hands-on activities with lots of thinking and predicting what might happen if…
Andy has a great sense of humor and really engages the students in the conversation. For each activity, a couple volunteers come up to demonstrate the experiment. All the students are involved in predicting what might happen during that experiment.
Students are learning about kinetic energy, potential energy, sound energy, light energy, transfer of energy, chemical energy and more. One of my favorite activities involves the basketball and tennis ball to show the transfer of energy. It’s always fun to hear what students predict will happen “the tennis ball will roll off the basketball”, and their reaction with the result: “whoa, wow, ahhhh!”
In another experiment, batteries are hooked to pencil lead in water, which creates bubbles in the water. After hooking it up, Andy asks the students how it works. What is it doing? What makes the bubbles? Students draw on their prior knowledge to figure it out.
From the sounds in the classroom, you can tell students are engaged, enjoying the activities, and expanding their understanding of science principles. Great programs, Andy!