Marvellous Machines - Autumn Term 2
Our project this term is called 'Marvellous Machines'. This interest-led project teaches children about the technology that is part of their daily lives and how machines help us. The project gives children the opportunity to build and create marvellous machines. Our companion project is called 'Puppets and Pop-ups'.
Our big question this term is: "How does it work?"
This week our lovely children have been learning about puppets that move. We started our split pin reindeers, we have been busy consolidating our learning in phonics and maths and performing in our Christmas Nativity.
This week we have learnt how to make pop up gingerbread men. The children had to follow the instructions carefully to make sure that their gingerbread man popped up when they opened the card.
Over the last few weeks of term, we are completing our companion project 'Puppets and Pop-ups' As part of our memorable experience the children watched my puppet show of 'The Gingerbread Man' before having a go at being the puppeteers and retelling the story themselves. Throughout the rest of the week, we began to explore and make different types of puppets and used them in our puppet show.
Our innovate challenge for this projected is based around the story Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty. After reading the book as a class the children received a letter from Rosie asking them to design and create a new machine. They children thought about what they would like their machines to do, designed them, made them and then gave them a name.
Tilly decided that her robot would make silly songs. She adapted and changed her ideas as she built. Tilly needed some help to join the pieces together an decide where to put each part. Tilly was particularly proud of the wires in her robot and she even made a charger to plug it in.
This week we are looking at robots. On Monday we looked at the robots that are programmed to do different jobs and actions in factories. We talked about different factory machines and discussed what they did. We then thought about the sounds they make, and the children used their voices and percussion instruments to try and replicate these sounds. On Tuesday we looked at robots that are designed to look more like humans. We then practised creating robots using a range of 3D shapes.
This week we have been learning about vehicles now and in the past. We talked about how they work and what has changed. The children were shocked to discover that fire engines in the past were pulled by horses and had to be pumped by hand. The children used the small world dolls house and café to role play fighting fires with a new and old fire engine.
The children have been busy creating their own vehicles and testing them on our ramps and tracks outside. We experimented to see which track made our vehicles go the furthest. The children used resilience and reflection skills to adapt their vehicles as they played and mend them when they crashed!
This week we have been looking at lots of different types of machines
We started by investigating machines that light up. We looked at a range of light sources and created our own simple circuits.
We then explored machines that help us in the home. We talk about how these are powered and what was used in the past. The children LOVED using the hoover and the dustpan and brush to see who could clean up the quickest and thoroughly enjoyed testing out the hand whisk and electric whisk to see which could make the best bubbles. We all agreed that the electric machines were faster and much easier to use.
Finally, we looked at machines that help us communicate. The children were fascinated by the old, wired phones and phone boxes. We learnt about sound waves and how sound is created when something vibrates. We explored this by making our own paper cup phones. When the string was held taut, we could feel the vibrations as our friend spoke into the cup.
We started our new project by talking about the different machines we have in our homes, at school and in our community. We talked about how machines work and ways that we can stay safe when using them. We then used two machines: a toaster and a microwave to make tasty snacks. We then opened our own café for the children to role play using pretend machines too.
Next we began exploring terrific tablets and iPads. We learnt about how they work, explored the different ways they could be used and tested out the different apps. We also read the story Smartie the Penguin, who taught us how to stay safe while using computers, phones and iPads.