Big Hit or Big Bust

Pat on the Back

There were many highlights during our day at Eshleman Elementary, I think the number one highlight was just being able to spend that time with all the amazing First Graders. So many of the children seemed extremely engaged and interested during the ten minutes we had with each group. Another highlight would be the overall success that our project had, all of our trials were consistent and each one worked just as well as the last. A huge highlight was the brain break at the middle of the rounds, we got to take some time to dance and have fun with all the students. We also enjoyed being able to spend some time asking the students about the overall experience after all the rounds were complete. We had a lot of great feedback from the teachers there along with the students on our Elephant Toothpaste, which is an overall highlight as well. Being complimented by many of the teachers at Eshleman Elementary was a lasting highlight that will stick with us, especially the comment “you will make great teachers.”

Taking Pride

We were extremely proud of the overall turn out of the event, each group had an awesome activity to engage the students and the event ran very smooth. We also were very proud of our group as a team, we all worked extremely well together, taking turns on who would say what and all having our time talking to the kids. All three of us contributed equally, whether it was with materials or  effort during each round with the kids. Another very proud moment for us was when a lot of the children commented on our project as one of their favorites, it feels good to hear positive feedback and know that your hard work was accounted for.

Think Quick

The amazing thing about Inquiry in the Rounds is that we got to do our experiment with the students eight times. This gave us seven chances to improve our experiment station for the students. We were forced to quickly reflect, think on the spot, and come up with modifications. One modification that we made was that we learned to slow down and take our time for the experiment so that we could fill the entire ten minutes.  Another modification we made was the way in which we engaged students, we modified by introducing the students to the activity explaining that they themselves were scientists. We had them put on their imaginary scientist safety goggles and gloves, and referred to them as scientist (child’s name). We also modified how we explained the science behind the reaction. We first presented the science information as matter of factly but by the end modified to presenting the science by explaining that this is top secret information from the elephant toothpaste factory. All of these modifications led to our last two rounds being our best rounds. The modifications increased students engagement, learning, and enjoyment.

Hmmmm, I Wonder….

There were some questions that emerged from our time at Eshleman that could influence the way we could recreate this experiment for the future. 

Questions for students:

  1. What would happen if we didn’t include one of the ingredients in the experiment? Would it still work the same?
  2. What made the mixture bubble up and come out of the bottle?
  3. Is this what you thought was going to happen?
  4. Can you explain what just happened?

Questions for teachers:

  1. How can I ensure every student has an equal role in the experiment?
  2. How can I ensure the students understood the lesson and it’s purpose? 
  3. How can we rapidly adjust our lessons in the moment in the classroom?


If you missed our last blog post check out the experiment we conducted at Inquiry in the Rounds:

Elephant toothpaste

Uploaded by Felicia Swift on 2019-10-29.