As part of her work with St Thomas More primary school, Su Mennie recently led a staff meeting to share some CIEC science activities with the teachers. St Thomas More has a gold Primary Science Quality Mark and they were keen to add to their existing smorgasbord of engaging ways to teach the science curriculum, including 'Salt for my chips' from the free CIEC resource 'A Pinch of Salt'. They particularly appreciated that this activity provided a real life context in which children could apply learning objectives and practise vocabulary from the science curriculum.
The teachers first compared a sample of pure salt with some rock salt and considered how they could extract salt that was pure enough to use on food from the rock salt. They started by dissolving the rock salt sample in water before filtering it to remove all of the undissolved solids.
Then they evaporated the water from the salt solution to leave behind salt. Of course, important discussion should also focus on whether this salt could actually be used on chips, therefore providing an opportunity to discuss microbes. Teachers also discussed whether it would be safe to use a candle in class; the teachers decided that, with an appropriate risk assessment, they would be happy to do this with upper KS2 children, but other heat sources could be used, such as a radiator.
If you would like to try this, or any other activity, from A Pinch of Salt you will find that it is fully supported with teachers' notes and activity sheets for children.
We would love to hear about your experiences of using this, or any other CIEC resource, and will send a hard copy of our acclaimed 'Working Scientifically' to anyone who shares their experiences with us.