Science safety is something that students must learn. However, teaching science safety and tools can feel like a repetitive way to start each year. The good news is – It doesn't have to be! I've outlined these lesson plans for science safety and tools that will keep your students engaged and excited to learn about these core pieces of any science curriculum.
Fun Lesson Plan For Science: Safety & Tools
Here's an outline of our week:
Day 1: Setting Up Journals
Here's a quick peek into how I set up my science journals.
Our entire campus utilizes journals so it doesn't take a ton of explanation besides the little individualized stylings that I use in my room.
My journal is divided into three tabs:
This is a new twist I am trying out this year to help these journals be a little more organized.
Day 2: We are Scientists
I love this lesson….really, seriously love it!
I read it on a chat board years ago, which I cannot seem to locate (if this is your lesson, let me know so I can give you credit!).
It works so perfectly to connect the rest of the week, and it is super simple.
All you need are envelopes with a small hand mirror in each, and it really stick with the kids. The day begins with the question, “What is a scientist?”
I elaborate by adding what do they look like, what might they wear, where would I find them.
I try to really get them to think deeply about their preconceived notions.
After my students brainstorm independently for about 3-5 minutes under their top flap, I put them into small groups to share for another 5 minutes or so.
Finally, I bring them together to share what they wrote.
I create a class list either on a board or chart paper to track their answers. They can add to their flap if something strikes them.
After we do this, I tell them I have the complete full answer sealed in an envelope for each group.
I let them know they will get to see this answer, but they'll need to keep it a secret from the other groups. Then I hand each group an envelope.
When the kids first open their “answer”, I often get a lot of confused looks.
They check the back of the mirror and the sides, and sometimes even need guidance to get to the idea of looking into the mirror.
However, at least one student in each group ends up making the connection and the word quickly spreads. WE ARE SCIENTISTS!
I wrap up the lesson by having students reflect on this new understanding under the after flap.
I provide some guiding questions to help them write this second flap.
They need to tell me how their idea of what a scientist is changed because of this activity and whether the answer surprised them.
I conclude the lesson by giving a few students a chance to share out.
Then I let them know as scientists we have certain responsibilities to follow science safety rules, follow the scientific method, and use tools correctly.
This becomes the focus for the rest of our week!
Day 3: Science Safety
I begin by connecting with yesterday's lesson that we are all scientists in our class and reminding them that, as scientists, we are required to follow science safety rules.
Depending on my class, I use one of two videos.
The first is a cartoon, and the kids find it really entertaining.
However, I personally love the second one, and I use it those years I have a more musically oriented class because it is a rock opera version with muppet-like creatures.
Then my class cuts and glues this easy foldable into their journal, and we sort and record the science safety rules by sense.
I feel like using the senses is a really approachable way to address safety rules, and my kids seem to really pick up on the point this way.
We discuss each one as we go and why it is a rule.
Finally, my students are ready to sign their safety contract, and they glue it to the front cover of their journal.
I use this as a reminder when I see students not obeying lab safety rules.
If time allows, I also have a printable that is an illustration of a science lab with lots of safety violations.
Their job is to find and color ONLY the things that are not ok in the lab.
Many years I never get to this though because we are having such a great conversation about the safety rules and why they are in place.
Days 4 & 5: Science Tools
This year I am planning to do something a little different to help the students get a better grasp on science tools, their names, and uses.
I have created a few stations that the kids will complete to get better acquainted with the main tools and how they work.
So there you have it, a quick look into my first lesson plan for science.
Teaching and learning about science should be fun for both students and teacher.
If you enjoyed my overview and would like to get a copy of my lesson plan for science: Safety & Tools including all these great resources, they are available at my TPT store.
What's your favorite lesson plan for science to teach? Let me know in the comments below!