Thursday, March 26, 2015

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Hovercraft

Today was awesome. A few students were making paper plate hovercrafts last week & we just weren't that impressed with the outcome. I asked the director over at Excelsior Science Workshop for some tips, & he pointed me to a much larger version of the hovercraft. Thanks Sol.

Quote for the day: "I am going to be an engineer." 

Thank you Martinez Community Foundation for making projects like this possible! Also thanks to Martinez Home Depot for donating your scrap wood. We appreciate it.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Tinkering at Vicente

I am thoroughly pleased to say that we had a successful tinkering session at Vicente this morning. Students chose to be there, decided what to work on and when they were done; everyone stayed engaged & creative and cleaned up their work spaces to boot. Tools & supplies were abundant thanks to our principal Carol Adams who has worked so hard to create engaging opportunities for her students. I'm still working on models for inspiration but this didn't seem to be a problem today. Students were working on paper circuits, a few battery & solar powered cars, a hovercraft in the making & a flashlight.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Castle Design Challenge

We started today's workshop off by reading Yurtle the Turtle, discussed team work, had a side chat about the similarities between Yurtle and some older siblings. .. and then circled back around to the challenge: design a castle that included a tower where Yurtle would have an unobstructed 360 degree view of his land and include 2 other features as well. Each team looked at pictures of castles and sketched out their ideas, once they had a design they got their materials & went to work.   I was impressed how creative & different they all were. One had a pretty elaborate tower complete with cork knights, another had a dungeon & a working drawbridge, they all were unique & each group presented their project at the end of the workshop. Thanks Rich & Cathy at Shell for all the cardboard we can use & thanks to Ms. Hardesty for bringing a bag full of corks.  I love how this designer is evaluating their plans against their model. 

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Apple battery

Vicente CSW was held outside on the lawn today, other students experimented thermal, wind & solar energy. Science in the sun.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Paper circuits

John Muir Workshop goers made paper circuits on Wednesday using copper tape (slug tape), surface mount LEDs,  3v cell batteries, tape, paper & crayons. Proud of these kids for their persistence, working with copper tape & those teeny tiny lights gets tricky!  Thanks high-low tech for the idea.

Friday, January 9, 2015

JMSW electromagnetic wall additions


These Wednesday workshop goers worked on some clever & crafty additions to our electromagnetic wall, Others made magnet toys, some made lava lamps & some were fascinated watching all the living creatures in our pond. Everybody was working on something they chose, it was slightly chaotic and harmonious all at the same time.