We started out with a lapbook on the basics of maps and globes. This was a great opportunity to continue working on continents and oceans with the youngest. My oldest fashioned his own globe out of a styrofoam ball that we found laying around and two toothpicks.
We read the Magic School Bus : Amazing Magnetism and completed an accompanying unit (free!). The boys built their own compass using the same methods from as Miss Frizzle. We also used the Young Scientist Series : Magnetism kit.
For our field trip, we took a trip to the zoo to test our map skills. Not once (including this trip) have we visited the zoo without getting lost! While we were there, we stopped in to see the baby rhino that was just born. (Everybody say "awwwwwww.")
We learned about how magnetism helps animals, such as butterflies, with their migratory paths. And we finally got to see the chameleon at the herpetology house. While in the herpetology house, we brushed up on our knowledge of local (and venomous) snakes.The front of the zoo has an enormous world map. The boys were challenged to find someplace they had recently visited, and go stand on it. One is at the Great Lakes, while the other is by New York City.
We enjoyed a nice little hike as we attempted to find our way out of the maze that they call the zoo....it's always an adventure!We walked next door to the Science Museum to take this adventure into cooler, and less humid, temperatures. At the entrance, we found an extra-large globe, and enjoyed pointing out where different family members live. See the world's largest globe in Maine!
We talked about different types of maps, as well. Here is a cute map of the solar system and an astronomical chart of the stars during different seasons.In the hands-on section, we learned about magnetic fields, how magnetism and electricity are related, and how magnetism affects gravitational pull.
We have been studying Leonardo da Vinci for history, and reading the Magic Treehouse : Monday with a Mad Genius . In the book (spoiler alert), Leonardo's secret to happiness is his perpetual curiosity. As we had just completed the book, I found this wall mural to be relevant and fascinating.Back at home, we created maps of the zoo and learned about animal classification. There were some great sections in the animal classification unit about how the earth's magnetic pull affects different animals. It was a nice, albeit unintentional, segue.
My youngest took this photo. He says that I never put pictures of myself on the blog posts. I told him that it was because I took most of the pictures, so he decided to put his own artwork online today. In my defense, it was very hot and humid!!