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Scotch: Science Fair Central

  What it is:   Scotch Science Fair Central is a website collaboration between Scotch brand products from 3M and Discovery Education.  The site is a wealth of free resources for creating innovative science fair projects.  The site leads students step by step through creating a science fair project starting with choosing a project idea.   Students can search through multiple science topics in life sciences, earth science, or physical science.  Within each of these topics is several subcategories and then ideas based on a testable question, what is tested, and what data is collected.  This site is very comprehensive and will have your students thinking like a scientist in no time!  The site then leads students through the steps of differentiating their project between investigations and inventions so they can choose the appropriate project type.  Step two actually leads them through the investigation or invention process depending on which project type was chosen.  Step three takes students through the process of creating the actual presentation portion of the science fair project.  There is a great section of parent resources as well as a section for science fair coordinators. How to integrate Scotch: Science Fair Central into the classroom:  Science fair projects have the potential to teach students a lot.  They learn organization, responsibility, the scientific process, observation, testing, inquiry, problem solving, and critical thinking.  Science fair projects are extremelly worthwhile when they are accompanied by a quality process that students can follow.  I remember years when the science fair meant quickly pulling something ‘scientific’ together (two cans with a string in between to show sound travel) with very little gained from the project.  This was due in part to being assigned a science fair project without understanding the basis of how scientists work and think.  Scotch: Science Fair Central solves this dilemma because students are led step-by-step through the scientific process and along the way learn how a scientist thinks.  Before you assign a science fair project, spend a day in the computer lab with students and let them go through this site and begin to plan their science fair project.  I love how this site is organized into different types of science because it gives every student the opportunity to find a project that they are interested in and motivated by.  If you don’t have access to the lab, set up a science fair planning center on your classroom computers or guide your students through the site with a computer and projector.  If you are a science teacher, take a look at this great resource and use the planning guide to plan a school science fair.   Tips:  Be sure to send this site home to parents, they will appreciate the parent section as they help their child at home.   Leave a comment and tell us how you are using Scotch: Science Fair Central in your classroom.

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“It’s Project PLN Time, Project PLN Time!”

Posted by admin | Posted in Project PLN | Posted on 11-10-2012

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“It’s Project PLN Time, Project PLN Time!” (In my head, that is being sung to the tune of “It’s Peanut Butter Jelly Time, Peanut Butter Jelly Time!”)  There are dance moves accompanying this. Can you tell I’ve been surrounded by 10 year olds all day long? 😉  Are you singing it now?  Good.

Project PLN is now accepting submissions for the November Issue.  This issue is labeled the “Sharing Issue”.  Whenever teachers get together, we quickly start sharing great lesson plans, resources and tools that we have discovered (this is one of the reasons that my husband is not interested in having dinner with a bunch of educators!).  Since it isn’t practical for us to all get together for a edugeeky dinner, we want Project PLN to be a place where people can share their awesome lesson plans or resources with everyone out there.

If you think you have something awesome to share, please send an email to ProjectPLN10@gmail.com and we will add it to the November Issue. Please follow the guidelines for submissions below so we can quickly and easily load your posts to the site.

Please email the article or link to the article to ProjectPLN10@gmail.com

Please include a small bio that includes your blog, Twitter handle and other information you would like to share. A picture is encouraged, but not required.

It may be a piece you have published on your blog already. A good idea is still a good idea even if you had it a few months ago.

Please submit posts by Monday November 5. We expect for the issue to go live on Tuesday November 13.

Thanks again for all of the support you have given Project PLN over the years.

Kelly and Nick

Co-Editors – Project PLN

Help me personalize education for EVERY child!  Donate and spread the word about the Learning Genome Project.

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