New Facilitator!

By Alondra

Although the girls understood that there was going to be a new facilitator, I was still nervous. I thought of so many ways to present myself: nice, funny, or even strict. It was nerve wrecking. Fortunately, Marilee , their previous facilitator, instructed them very well.

Badges had been introduced during their previous class, so they were excited to know when the first badge was going to be awarded. I told them that during the first week the Communication Badge was going to be awarded. I also had them read and explain the criteria so they would understand better.

The girls began class a little shy, but throughout the day their attitudes changed. I decided to let them vote on the activity for the day; the options were either building straw bridges or making slime. All of them voted for slime. They worked as a team:

Team work makes the dream work!

Team work makes the dream work!

First, Lesly helped me set up the equipment. But the other girls wanted to help too so I gave them each a different task. They each read a step and completed what it said; then, as Jade read the instructions, Denise would follow them and complete the step. I was amazed at how they understood each other, sometimes without using words. The girls were interested in knowing exactly what made the slime stretch more or make it “softer” like Jade said. So I allowed them to experiment it themselves.

Jade exploring!

Here Jade decides to submerge her slime into water and borax. When I asked her what had happened to it, she said, “It became softer.”

Lesly trying to see how far her slime stretched.

Lesly trying to see how far her slime stretched.

Lesly had something a little different in mind. She wanted to know how far her slime would stretch without breaking. Her conclusion was , “the more I have it in my hands the faster it breaks.”

They then helped me clean up and we headed to lunch where we got to tell each other what we liked and what we didn’t. By that time the girls seemed more relaxed and laughed much more than at the beginning. When I asked who thought they deserved the Communication Badge they all raised their hand, but of course they all made sure to look over the criteria first. Towards the end we played charades and hang man: There the girls really let themselves go. As they shared their journals I realized that I didn’t have to be so nervous because they thought that having a new member in their group wasn’t so bad. Knowing that they felt comfortable with me and that they had fun learning makes me look forward to the future classes with my curious explorers!

Jade, Lesly, Denise

Jade, Lesly, Denise

Advertisements

Sisters4Science girls are hope for this world

“What are we doing today?”

“We are making clean water.”

“What? Ms. Kim you always bring the weird experiments.  I’m not saying it in a bad way.”

S4S_Joslin_11_2013_2As the girls were all settled, I brought up the concept we were about to do together, “Clean Water Project.”  I had the girls take notes while watching the interactive online lesson; all of the girls were so engaged.  Faith didn’t want to take notes at all so I let her just watch and remember the procedure, but she took notes. She did it!  As we moved to the experiment Brianna got up, marker in hand, and began to lead the class through the steps of the scientific process.  Wow, I did nothing!  I just let it flow as they were.  They were making the whole class!  It was so amazing to see the girls grow in curiosity.  They all took a turn to be a part of it–Faith did the first step by shaking the swamp water in the bottle–I couldn’t capture her in a photo.  She was shaking the bottle and her body as well.

S4S_Joslin_11_2013We made a water filter by creating a layer with pebbles, coarse sand, and white beach sand.  I couldn’t find a measuring cup, but Micha volunteered to be a measuring cup–actually her hands.  Amorianna, Ashley, and Brianna made the layer together.  Team work, yay!  Then we poured the dirty swamp water little by little through the filter.  We filtered the water twice to have a better result.

For journaling, I shared a little of my experience helping little children and women in India, where there was no access to the clean water even the restrooms.  The poor people that live on the mountain valley had no access to clean water, restrooms, and no schools at all for little children.  They would sleep on concrete floors.  My team and I joined the families and slept on the concrete floors for 15 days while building a small restroom for the mountain village people. Once I shared a little of my life in India, the girls had a better idea with “Clean Water Project.”  The journal prompt was: “Based on this experiment, how would you support or help others in order to provide the clean water?”

S4S_Joslin_11_2013_3Brianna said, “We can fund a trip to Africa.  We can educate them like teach this experiment then help them go to the school.”  Micha had stunning questions, more political, “Do the rich people know this?  Why aren’t they helping them?  Is there any way for the companies to do this?”  Honestly I did not have an answer for her.  I still don’t.  It is sad, very sad to see how unfair the world is, but I see hope right here in our classroom.  I believe we, Sisters4Science girls, are hope for this world.  We are taking a tiny step, but we are making an amazing difference together!