Review: Physics of Sound was designed for grades 3 and 4, but can also be used with older students. It is one of the 27 modules of the Full Option Science System, each of which is available as a kit. This kit and teacher's guide contain several excellent activities including building a xylophone, kalimba and "mini-gutbucket." Much printed material for sutdents has been translated into Spanish. A new series of FOSS Science Stories is available. The teacher's guide is available only with purchse of FOSS as a full classroom kit.
Other Information: FOSS Physics of Sound module ($419.00 plus 10% shipping) is available from Delta Education, PO Box 3000, Nashua NH 03061-3000. Call 800-442-5444. On-line address is www.delta-ed.com
Scientists rely on a variety of senses when conducting investigations. In order to help my students draw connections between what scientists do and what we learn in class, we decided to determine just how much scientists depended on their senses. These three activities encourage students to rely on their own senses to identify natural objects and to describe their surrounding environment.
What do we want our students to discover about sound? what activities and materials would be helpful in facilitating these discoveries? These were the questions that led a team of primary teachers to develop a collection of activities and materials to build a kit on sound.
To get you started in exploring the mathematical dimension of your senses, here are three activities which involve the collection and analysis of data. In turn, these activities provide opportunities for a meaningful integration of technology into your classroom. Using computer software or graphing calculators, your students can make tables of the data, calculate statistics, and create graphs - and in the process develop an appreciation for the power of technology as a research tool.
What do you hear near the school? Could we go outside and make a collection of sounds and then bring our ideas back and make a map? Questions such as these started two groups of first graders off in different directions from an older school building at the edge of a downtown neighborhood.