Join Our Elementary Science Club Today!


Tami O'Connorby Tami G. O’Connor

As elementary school teachers, we are expected to help our students become scientifically literate (among many other things), but let’s face it:  too often we have limited time for science instruction during the school day.  Still, we know that kids just love science!  They’re always eager to learn more about the world around them, especially when the material is taught in fun and creative ways.

But what can we do when our science teaching time is so limited in school?  How do you get students involved in scientific discovery outside the classroom?  Sure, you can give them homework, but many kids find simply reading about science unappealing.  You want your students to LOVE learning more about science… not dread it.

Read the rest of this entry »


First Graders and the Drinking Bird: A Love Story


First Graders & the Drinking Bird: A Love Story - Educational Innovations Blogby John Frassinelli

Having first seen a “drinking bird” in elementary school myself, I had never forgotten it.  Our teacher, I think, had placed one on the windowsill.  We had no air conditioning in those days, and the windows actually opened!  Air circulated through the room, and that probably influenced the bird.  I think it’s too bad that many classrooms are hermetically sealed these days, but we do what we can.

Recently I decided to introduce my first graders to my old friend, the Drinking Bird.   I bought a few birds and fooled around with them, making sure each one would “drink” as it was supposed to.  I learned that some birds need a bit of adjustment—their centers of mass might be too high or too low.  But this is easily remedied by gently twisting the bird’s body and raising (or lowering) it on its metal clasp.

Read the rest of this entry »


20 Musts for Every Elementary (Science) Teacher


Tami O'Connorby: Tami O’Connor

Okay, so you’re a new (or not-so-new) elementary teacher, and you need to teach science.  Some teachers feel apprehensive when they think they have to teach science, but let me assure you, it’s the easiest subject to teach in elementary school. Why? Because the kids are totally into it!  Children are born with that natural curiosity.  As infants, everything goes into their mouths to taste, feel and discover their surroundings.  It’s only when we kill this curiosity that kids begin to dislike or even fear science class.  Here are 20 easy tips for all elementary teachers that will foster your students’ love of science.

Elementary Science Teachers, Take Note!

Read the rest of this entry »