Middle School Science

Systems within Systems

The Middle School students began looking at major systems in our universe and world that impact one another.  As reported last fall, we began with creating our own solar system and gaining a size perspective using squares of TP to represent scale models.  The results were pretty impressive!

Lining up the planets

Lining up the planets

Further out . . .

Further out . . .

Pluto was WAY out there!

Pluto was WAY out there!

In order to create a visual format we found the furthest planets were WAY FAR OUT! We also learned using this scale that the sun would fill our entire Atrium and more!

We planned vacations on several of the planets and determined there wasn’t a lot to do and travelers need to be really prepared for extreme temperatures—amazing!

We found Volcanic activity in the strangest places with the largest being on Mars!

From the Solar System we traveled to the center of the earth and learned about the structure of the earth. Thanks to malted milk balls, cookie dough, and granola for the earth’s crust.  Love those experiments we can eat!!!!!

Then came plate tectonics  . . . and another edible experiment!

Then came plate tectonics . . . and another edible experiment!

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Plate interaction creates seafloor spreading, plate movement and VOLCANOES.

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We researched the 12 most dangerous volcanoes and then built our own, painted and designed them and then had a grand time setting them off.  Unfortunately the best and biggest eruption got the camera, Mrs. Neil’s clothes, hair, and glasses.  THAT was fun.

Plate tectonics and geological impact got far too exciting to leave our studies in the lab so we ventured out on a three-day trip to Mt. St. Helens to see the impact of volcanism ‘up-close-and-personal’.  And it was definitely a BLAST.

First stop:  the house buried by ash in the 1980 eruption; and of course a photo-op with the resident Sasquatch.

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We toured Johnson Ridge Observatory, hiked trails and then to the Ape Cave Lava Tubes.

MS science 13Our last day was spent touring the Nisqually Wildlife Refuge exploring earth dynamics and changes related to geology.

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