Over the past couple of weeks, students used techniques of filtering and evaporation to separate the products of the reactions (baking soda, calcium chloride, and citric acid).  Students found they could make a precipitate, or new product – chalk – when the calcium chloride and baking soda were mixed together.

Using combinations of the substances (again, baking soda, calcium chloride and citric acid), students produced chemical reactions in a zip bag. The closed systems allow students to effectively observe the volume of gas and discover a new precipitate when all three substances are mixed in a bag.
On Monday, students collected water samples from the school and use observation and evaporation to determine what’s in each sample.
We will wrap up this unit on Friday, March 29 by making our own ice cream in a bag.
Our final test on Mixtures and Solutions will be on April 3.


This week, students make a saturated solution by adding salt to water until no more salt will dissolve.

There will be a test on Friday, March 1.   See study guide for topics.  Students are encouraged to take their journals home to study.


Next week:  Continuing to learn about saturation and solubility, students will also make a saturated Epsom salts solution. Using a balance scale, they will compare the solubility of the two solid materials by comparing the mass of the salt and Epsom salts dissolved in the saturated solutions. Students use the property of solubility to identify an unknown material.


5th graders have been exploring the difference between a mixture and a solution.  They found that mixtures are easier to separate than solutions by using filters to separate gravel, diatomaceous earth, (crushed rocks, shells that make a powder), and salt from water.   The students also went outdoors to find out if they could find any materials that make a solution – they learned that essential oils and extracts are made that way.

To close out this week, students will observe and compare soft-drink solutions that differ in the amount of powder (water held constant) and in the amount of water (powder held constant) to develop the concept of concentration.

Next week we will continue to explore concentration using salt.  No tasting though!

Join us for STEM Night on Friday, February 8.  The fun begins at 5:30pm


Students did very well on their final test for our Sun, Moon and Planets unit.  I have already graded them and gave them to their teachers.

We are moving on to our next area of study:  Mixtures and Solutions.  I will be sending home a letter in the Eagle Express detailing this new unit.  Here is a short summary of what they will be doing next week:

Students will make mixtures of water and solid materials and separate the mixtures with screens and filters. They then find that water and salt make a special kind of mixture, a solution, which cannot be separated with a filter but only through evaporation. Students are then challenged with a problem: how to separate a mixture of three dry solid materials. The investigation concludes with students going outdoors to see what natural materials make solutions with water.


Have a wonderful weekend.


Lisa Jamsion


Happy New Year!

We will finish our unit on the Solar System with a test this Friday, January 11.  A short review will take place on Wednesday, January 9.

A new year brings a new unit.  We will be starting our Mixtures and Solutions module next week.  THIS is what they have all been waiting for: The mixing! The solutions!   I will send a letter home with a summary of the unit next week also.


Please contact me with any questions, thank you!


There will be a short science quiz on Friday, November 30 over shadows and our Earth’s rotation.  Students will have a review on Wednesday.



Goodnight Moon…..Our journey to the moon is complete and now we are moving on to our next investigation:

5th Graders will be exploring our solar system when we return from Thanksgiving break.  They will classify planets by their various properties and be able to record and display the organization of the solar system graphically.   We will then move on to learning about some of the 88 constellations.


Happy Thanksgiving


New Unit  – Sun, Moon and Planets

This week, students will trace their shadows in the morning and afternoon. They use this information to monitor the position of the Sun as it moves across the sky. After using a compass to orient a Sun tracker, students make hourly records of the position of the shadow cast by a golf tee. Back in the classroom, students will  use flashlights to reproduce the shadow movements. Students imagine an observer on Earth (their head) and position themselves around a lamp to observe day and night. They discover that rotation of Earth produces day and night.

Get ready for moon observations.  Look for their Moon Journal to come home…..

Science Quiz

We are wrapping up our Living Systems unit, concluding with transport systems in humans and plants.

There will be a 10 question, multiple choice quiz on Monday, October 22.  There is a diagram of the heart that they will have to label, but other than that it’s multiple choice.

A study guide went home today and we reviewed it in class.

Dr. Juneman will be here on Friday, October 19 to present about the heart.  The information she presents will NOT be on the quiz.

We will be moving on to our Astronomy Unit next!


Today, students designed an investigation to determine the necessary conditions for activating dry yeast. After determining that water and a cookie produce yeast activity, they conducted an experiment to discover that it is the sugar in the cookie that activates the yeast. Yeast is introduced as a single-celled fungus.

Moving on to the Human System, the students got an introduction to the digestive system.  We will move on to the circulatory and vascular systems this week.