"Good Morning, Dr Kennedy!" "Good Morning, Doctors!" That is how we greet each other during human body labs week, when my classroom becomes a hospital. I love classroom transformations, and they don't have to be expensive. Students love classroom transformations, and they stay engaged. I like to do one new transformation a year. Then, I keep the supplies to reuse. I am only on my third year of teaching. So, it's time to make a new one. My next one is planned for ecology. Check out my two previous classroom transformations below. (I have included affiliate links to the supplies I use.)
My first classroom transformation was Human Body Hospital Labs. My 7th graders have to learn about the human body systems, and diseases. After studying the information, I transform the lab for investigations. I cover the lab tables with white plastic table cloths from Amazon. Then I splash the cloths with a little bit of red paint. This helps to set the scene of an emergency…
My latest lab that I did with my 8th graders was Plate Tectonics. They have to study convergent, divergent, and transform boundaries. They also need to know what events happen at each boundary. This lab is the perfect way to learn it, show it, and get messy! To prepare for this lab each student will need the following materials. Materials:
Two full graham crackers broken in half
Paper towels/baby wipes for easy clean up
** I like to put a little bit of red and orange food dye in the cool whip. This helps to make it look more like the mantle. For the lab, each plate needs to have the cool whip spread across the plate. (smaller plates will be easier and cheaper). The cool whip will represent the mantle and the graham crackers will represent continental and oceanic crust. Then the student’s will slide the crackers around on top of the cool whip to represent each plate boundary.
During the lab the students will model a transform boundary by rubbing the crackers together. Then…
Middle Schoolers love gross and fun (so do I). This Poop Lab modeling brings all of that together in one amazing hands-on lesson, that they will never forget!
My 7th graders need to know the digestive system function, and the organs that aid in digestion. This lab uses all the primary organs of digestion, and the digestive juices from the secondary organs. I usually have the students do a writing activity based on the digestive system, a few days before the lab to lay a foundation. That assignment prepares them for the quickness of the lab. The most time consuming part for the teacher is prepping the lab. I have learned to have students help. Together we can complete the lab set up in 10 minutes. Alone it takes me over an hour to set it up.
For set up, each group gets a station with all of the materials. You can see below what I use for each organ. In addition to those materials, you will need a sandwich. I use white bread and refried beans. This ends up looking like ja peanut butter …