Air can move things. STEM session plan
This is fun STEM activity where children learn the power of air.
Air science it is! Don’t panic, it’s only science… and math … You can do it, and so can young students! It’s all about asking good questions, encouraging children to repeat your actions, observe, and cheer them on.
In this STEM activity students will move various materials by blowing air through a straw. Experiments help students develop basic science skills like observing what is happening, using words to describe what they notice, and repeating the action to compare results.
Content: Science: force, properties and characterization of materials. Math: comparing and ordering, length.
Skills: Predicting, experimenting, observing, measuring, recording, analysing.
Vocabulary: Heavy/light, hard/easy.
Materials: Straws, small pieces of light material (e.g. kitchen foil, tissue, cotton balls ….)
Background information: We cannot see air, but we can feel it when it moves. Ask the students to blow air on their hands or to wave their hands in the air. Ask them, ‘What do you feel?’.
Air can move things – think of leaves or sand blowing on a windy day. Air can speed things up, think of large sails of sailing boats catch the wind to push them through the water.
1. Students will try and predict which material is the easiest to move, and which one is the hardest.
2. Give each student a straw and ask them if they can move the material by blowing at it.
3. Follow-up questions:
How far each material moved with the same number of puffs?
Which material was the easiest to move? Why?
Which were you able to move the farthest? How far were you able to make it move?
The students can classify the things into ‘Easy to Move’ and ‘Hard to Move’.