Help! Warmer temperatures are creating a problem for penguins!
Fifth grade students in Ms. McKay’s classroom have been learning all about heat transfer, conductors, and insulators. As a final project for their unit, students took on an engineering challenge. Their clients? Penguins. The design challenge? Create a penguin hut to protect precious eggs from too much heat!
Students worked in groups to apply their new science knowledge to design and build model huts to help prevent the eggs from being over-heated from conduction, convection, and radiation. They tested their model huts by placing “penguin” ice cubes in their huts, and then placing the huts under a heat lamp. They measured the amount of ice that melted during the experiment. Each team then analyzed their results to identify how their model could be improved. They made revisions and then re-tested.
When students are asked to solve problems and apply their knowledge to reach challenges – that’s when engagement and learning take place. Here’s what our 5th grade scientists had to say about the penguin project: