Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Peeps Science Adventure, a S.T.R.E.A.M. event

Being a scientist with Peeps candy.

I set out a bunch of stations where children can pretend to be scientists with Peeps sweet treats. Most of my ideas came from a lovely packet of science ideas found at the site Teachers Pay Teachers. It was totally worth the $3!  I only made a few adjustments and added only one additional science station. 

To start us off thinking like scientists I handed out one peep to every child. We talked about the smell of the Peep, its taste, and its feel. The children then recorded their words with a pencil in their personal "Peep Journal." Next, I handed each child a Ziploc bag with 3 Peeps and told them to explore the different stations using their journal.

MEASUREMENT STATION - At this station the children observed what type of Peeps they had (rabbit or duck). Then they chose one Peep to weigh on a kitchen scale (in grams, of course). They also used a ruler to measure the length and width of their marshmallow friend.

PEEPS IN A POND - The children had to hypothesis what would happen to a Peep in the following liquids: water, lemon-lime soda, baking soda and vinegar. I had some Peeps set aside just for this station. The children could then draw a picture or write what happened to each Peep. (Note: This was a great station but I don't think I would use the baking soda and vinegar again. It didn't seem to do anything but bubble when they were first combined. I would try to find another liquid to use here.)

FREEZING PEEPS - I am lucky that there is a small refrigerator in my library's meeting room. I froze some Peeps at home in small Ziploc bags. I brought them in that day and placed them in the tiny freezer compartment of the fridge. The children had to hypothesis what they thought would happen to a Peep when frozen, then explain in writing or a picture why or why not their hypothesis was correct. The parents were especially impressed with the state of a frozen Peep. 

HOW MANY DOMINOES? - How many dominoes will it take to make a Peep sink?  Children needed to hypothesize and then experiment with the dominoes in the water. (Note: Make sure your dominoes sink. I knew my dominoes had home would, but the ones at work did not. A learning opportunity for everyone!)

PEEP STRUCTURES - Build a tall structure using marshmallows and toothpicks. (Note: I used the less pricey mini marshmallows here for the building, so the children could go crazy with height. But that did not stop the children from adding a Peep or two to their finished products.)

Overall, this was a fun program to do with the children. Most of the parents were also having fun. It was easy to put together, although the Peeps can get expensive if you have a large group. 

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