IMG_8060IMG_80503rd grade checked back in with their home-made geodes today.  Several of the egg shells had fully evaporated and the salt crystals really showed up.  Students were able to use a magnifying glass to take a closer look at where the salt crystals were–some all over and some just around the edges of the circle while the center was still filled with liquid, although all of the liquid had evaporated quite a bit from yesterday.

We started a new paragraph and wrote about what we noticed with our geodes on day 2.  What did it look like?  What changes did you notice?  What do you smell?  How did the color change?

They made me laugh by saying, “OH MY GOSH! LOOK AT MY GEODES!!!”  I had to remind them that this wasn’t a real geode.  We were just mimicking the properties of a geode.  It was still exciting.

From there we started a new experiment: do rocks float?

They all said no, rocks don’t float.  Rocks are heavy.  I passed around a series of IMG_8054rocks that they were able to inspect and examine and they had to decide if the rock would sink or float.  First up, pumice.  They were loud gasps and cheers when the pumice floated at the top of the glass.

We passed around rose quartz, magnetite, popcorn rock, and Iceland glass.  Each of the other rocks sank!  I was even surprised the tiny piece of magnetite sank.  It felt light and airy, but alas, it sank just as fast as the others.

Each student got a chance to scoop a rock back out after it sank.  After we put the rocks to the test then we wrote about what surprised us about the “do rocks float?” experiment.  Which rocks did they think would sink that floated?  Which rocks did they think would float actually sank? (After pumice floated then they shifted their thinking quite a bit!)

We were having such great conversations about the rock experiments that we only got through checking on our geodes and the floating experiment.  We are hoping to get through 2 sections tomorrow, but our excitement is keeping us from being more productive.  However, a lot of great IMG_8055learning is going on.  I’m enjoying see them get out the magnifying glass to take better looks, writing notes, checking with other teammates on what they notice, and examining all the different pieces.