A couple of weeks ago I was contacted by an AIMS customer. She had signed up and received one of our free activities, then she had purchased two science books with activities about weather. She had a question that was forwarded to me, “How do I implement the activities from the two weather books (Weather Sense: Temperature, Air Pressure, and Wind, and Weather Sense: Moisture) in to my science classroom?” That question needed more clarification, so I had to get some more information before I could help my new contemporary, Laura.
These are the questions I asked before I could give her some advice. How familiar are you with AIMS activities? How many minutes a week do you teach science? What weather standards do you need to cover? What experiences about weather would you like your students to have? What kinds of projects or activities do you do for science now? Laura said she had done some AIMS science activities in the past; she taught approximately 90 minutes of science per week and; she needed to cover air pressure and temperature; she wanted her students to collect and record data over a longer period of time and display it; and she was hoping to do all of this by the end of the school year.
Laura’s wishes were not unreasonable, and here is what I recommended to help her realize success. Ninety minutes of science per week was enough time to cover approximately two AIMS weather activities. I encouraged her to go through the books she had purchased and pick some of the air pressure and temperature activities but not all of them. I thought she should review what was covered in her science textbook if she was using these activities to supplement what it covered. I thought it would work for her to create a weather data collection station somewhere in her classroom so students could log daily observations.
Laura and I had a really great conversation. I had merely been there to help her brainstorm about her science planning for the rest of the school year. Teachers have precious little time outside of the classroom to plan and collaborate such as Laura and I did, but I know that she is ready for and very excited about science during the last quarter of her school year.
We at the AIMS Education Foundation are lucky to be affiliated with a smaller organization and to be able to help in ways like what happened in this instance. Be in touch; comment on this post and I’m happy to lend an ear to other educators with questions like Laura’s.
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