In the class that I work in, we use and love Mystery Science. If you have not heard of it, check it out! It’s super engaging and the kids love it so much more than learning from a textbook. I believe you can still get one free year of membership.
Each lesson (mystery) is set up with an “exploration” – usually a combination of video, pictures, and discussion questions. Followed by that is an activity – a fun, hands-on small project that the kids complete individually or in groups. Some activities require supplies that need to be purchased ahead of time, but usually they are inexpensive household items.
Following the activity, there is always a list of extras, including an assessment – usually 3-5 questions that check for understanding.
Here is what the beginning of each lesson looks like:
As amazing as Mystery Science is though, there aren’t enough mysteries to get through the whole year. We try stretch the lessons out by sprinkling in a few fun projects or activities to go with each unit. (And I always try to create a related reading list on Epic!)
We’re currently working through the “Spaceship Earth” unit of 5th grade science. It’s all about astronomy – the sun, stars, constellations, seasons, etc.
For a quick activity in between mysteries, the kids made these cute constellation maps to hang on the wall.
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We put a list of constellations on the board and each student chose one to work with. I put my sample up on the board then turned them loose with half a sheet of black card stock, some gold star stickers, a white colored pencil, and a ruler.
They looked up their constellations on their computers, drew out the shape of it with their ruler and white pencil, then stuck the star stickers on. The constellation names were written on the front with the white pencil.
A simple, fun activity for any kid old enough to handle a ruler!
Does anybody else use Mystery Science? What kinds of activities do you use to go along with it?