The Woodstock Elementary School STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) Lab and Makerspace is an exploratory learning space that strives to infuse the STEM disciplines into the broader curriculum. We have established a science, engineering and design learning lab in its own dedicated space, preparing our students today with the critical thinking, designing, engineering and problem solving skills they need to fill the jobs of tomorrow!
First Grade Studies "How Does a Cactus' Roots Compare to an Oak Tree's Roots?"
In this model, students used small horizontal "roots" made out of thin strips of sponge to capture "rainfall" - just like a cactus does.
They squeezed them out and measured how much water they were able to get, as a group, in two minutes of "rain."
70 ml for our cactus
The oak tree roots were larger pieces of sponge, were able to access the water directly from groundwater, and could be vertical to do so. After 2 minutes, the whole group collected the amount of "oak tree" root water.
4300 ml for the oak.
Quite a difference!
While not a perfect model, it illustrates how different plants adapt to their different environments.
We ended by drawing the root systems, taking notes, and recording our experimental data!