It has been an exciting few months for the eighth grade science students on the Cascade Team. Students started the year learning about genetics and the important role that genes play in organisms. As part of this unit, we watched the new documentary from PBS called “9 Months that Made Me.” This three part documentary follows the development of a baby in the womb, showing important genetic milestones in the offspring's maturation. Next, we shifted to our unit on Natural Selection and Adaption. This provided the opportunity for them to apply what they learned from our genetics unit, focusing on how some organisms are able to adapt in order to survive and reproduce.
The Smithsonian Institution called Exploring Human Origins traveling exhibit is coming to Burlington! This presents a great learning opportunity that you can share with your student. The exhibit will be at the Fletcher Free Library, 235 College Street in Burlington, from February 18 to March 17 and will explore some of the concepts that have been covered in class using interactive kiosks, displays and video. These demonstrations illustrate important evolutionary milestones such as walking upright and the development of the brain.
Below are the links to the Fletcher Free Library site and the website from the Smithsonian Institute for more information on the exhibit. I hope you will take the opportunity to go visit the exhibit.
Fletcher Free Library: Click Here
Smithsonian Institute: Click Here
We continue studying in the theme “change” as we start our current unit on the History of the Earth. In this unit, we have been exploring the Theory of Plate Tectonics and how the surface of the Earth is continuously changing. This unit involves lots of lab work and simulations and ends with students studying different geological time periods from billions of years ago to present day. From here, we will learn about Chemical Reactions and finish our year with our physical science units on Waves and Forces of Motion.
Above: Cascade students performing NECAP release task, Colliding Plates, as a part of the Earth and Space Science unit, History of Earth.