What student – or teacher – can resist the chance to experiment
with Rocket Launchers, Sound Pipes, Drinking Birds, Dropper Poppers and more?
The 35 experiments in Using Physical
Science Gadgets and Gizmos, Grades 6–8, cover topics including pressure and
force, thermodynamics, energy, light and colour, resonance and buoyancy.
The phenomenon-based learning (PBL) approach used by the authors –
two Finnish teachers and a US professor – is as educational as the experiments
are attention-grabbing. Instead of putting the theory before the application,
PBL encourages students to first experience how the gadgets work and then grow
curious enough to find out why. Working in groups, students engage in the
activities now as a task to be completed but as exploration and discovery.
The idea is to motivate young scientists to go beyond simply
memorising science facts. Using Physical
Science Gadgets and Gizmos can help them learn broader concepts, useful
thinking skills, and science and engineering practices (as defined by the Next
Generation Science Standards). And – thanks to those Sound Pipes and Dropper
Poppers – both your students and you will have some serious fun.