Backyard Science - Primary & Secondary Teaching Resource
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About this Resource
The Backyard Science 2: Primary & Secondary Teaching Resource (DVD-ROM) features experiments from the popular Backyard Science television series. This interactive resource uses video clips to showcase children utilising everyday household materials in fun and creative experiments. Through innovative and exciting activities, students develop insight into the knowledge and skills of science, and learn how to work scientifically.
The resource contains:
- 12 topics of investigations across 3 strands: Chemical Sciences, Physical Sciences and Biological Sciences
- Clips from Backyard Science television series
- Teaching activities and aligned student activity sheets for Years 4 to 8
- Background information to science concepts
- Classroom quiz for each investigation
- Equipment list and safety advice
Biological Sciences: Adaptations
These experiments and investigations provide opportunities for students to investigate the special features of plants which enable water to travel from the roots to the leaves. Students work both independently and collaboratively to explore the behaviour of water, test different weather conditions that affect the speed that water travels up the stem and examine features that influence the loss of water from plants.
Biological Sciences: Arthropods
These experiments and investigations provide opportunities for students to explore the diversity of living things and the classification system scientists use to communicate about, and to understand these creatures. Students are introduced to the idea of trapping organisms for scientific study and identify the ethical and safety issues involved. Different insects are used to compare and contrast characteristics; these observations are then recorded in a dichotomous key.
Biological Sciences: Circulation
These experiments and investigations provide opportunities for students to explore the structure and function of the heart and its role in the circulatory system. Students will recognise that sounds made by the heart can help indicate if a person is well and functioning normally. By reading about the history of the stethoscope, students engage with the concept of inventing and using medical devices to help monitor and diagnose the functions of the human body.
Biological Sciences: Life Cycles
These experiments and investigations provide opportunities for students to deepen their understanding of life cycles. Students investigate and record the stages of mushroom growth, conduct their own experiment by placing the same type of seed (broad bean) in four different orientations to see if the leaves still grow up and roots grow down, and discover how decomposition occurs, learning how their component nutrients allow them to be reused to continue the life cycle.
Chemical Sciences: Material Madness
These experiments and investigations provide opportunities for students to examine, explore and evaluate the properties of different materials and their uses. Students will identify the material/s that make up an object and investigate properties of paper and plastic, and relate the properties to how the materials are used. They will predict how wetting paper affects its strength and conduct tests to investigate their predictions.
Chemical Sciences: Reversible and Irreversible Changes
These experiments and investigations provide opportunities for students to analyse and compare the changes substances undergo, and classify them as reversible and irreversible. Students will revise states of matter and the terms used to describe these changes. They will be introduced to the processes of dissolving and crystallising, make their own super bouncing ball and compare properties to those explored throughout the unit.
Chemical Sciences: States of Matter
These experiments and investigations provide opportunities for students to observe the behaviour of solids, liquids and gases and compare their properties. Students will be introduced to the terms which describe different changes of state. They will design and conduct an investigation to determine how temperature affects the rate of evaporation, examine a substance that can be both a liquid and a solid, and will learn about colloids, which are a mixture of two different states of matter.
Physical Sciences: Circulating Charges
These experiments and investigations provide opportunities for students to investigate the movement of electricity through electrical circuits. Students explore different ways to form a closed circuit to light a bulb, and classify materials as conductors or non-conductors (insulators) of electricity. Students research the acidity of fruit and vegetables and design an investigation involving one of these to light an LED.
Physical Sciences: Energy Changes
These experiments and investigations provide opportunities for students to analyse different forms of energy changes and their impact on systems. Students construct an elastic potential energy device and record the energy changes that occur using flow diagrams. By building a stomp rocket and throwing balls, students are able to investigate the energy changes that occur on launch and flight while also exploring motion in simple and complex situations.
Physical Sciences: Forces
These experiments and investigations provide opportunities for students to identify types of forces, determine whether forces are balanced or unbalanced and compare water and air resistance. They will conduct an investigation into the relationship between friction and different types of surfaces. Students will design, conduct and report on an investigation to determine how the size of a parachute affects the rate of fall of an object.
Physical Sciences: Mysterious Magnets
These experiments and investigations provide opportunities for students to explore how a non-contact force, magnetism, interacts with everyday objects. Students will investigate the behaviour of a variety of materials when placed near a magnet and classify objects as magnetic or non-magnetic. Students will use their experiences to identify the attraction and repulsion of objects due to magnetic forces, identify the presence of magnetic field lines and develop an understanding of the non-contact nature of magnetism.
Physical Sciences: Shadows and Colours
These experiments and investigations provide opportunities for students to observe, explore and form conclusions about the interaction of light with materials which result in shadows and colour. Students will apply understandings of the terms transparent, translucent and opaque to classify materials and suggest an appropriate material for use as a shadow puppet. They explore interactions between materials and light which result in colours being observed and construct a Benham disk to investigate its interaction with light.