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The Science Playground Story

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BC: Thank you to the Nimitz P.T.O. and the Kerrville Public School Foundation for making our dreams come true

1: This is the story of the Science Playground at Nimitz Elementary School

2: Schonbrunn Palace Vienna, Austria While on vacation, my family toured this famous palace and discovered a wonderful playground area. This is the Archimedes Water Screw that inspired the notion that we should be providing these kinds of experiences at our own schools in the USA. So often we lament the lack of experiences our students have and this seemed to be a wonderful way for our 500+ students to experience an ancient invention that changed the world then and is still used today. I came back with this compelling project on my mind and proposed it to my principal, Wade Ivy. He agreed that we could study it and try to accomplish it on our elementary school playground. Research began with a 5th grade study group and as we learned about the physics on our playground, we discovered that there was only one source that could provide this equipment for our project.. | Pictures:(europe2010blog, 2010)

3: Archimedes lived from 287 B.C. until 212 B.C. | He was one of the greatest mathematicians who ever lived. | While studying the way to circumscribe a sphere, he was asked to find a way to drain water from the bottom of the king's ships. This water screw was the result. Then this device was used for many other applications. | That company was a playground manufacturer in Germany. I wrote a grant to help us buy this equipment and received it. It was a complicated process, but in December of 2009 we had a ribbon cutting ceremony for our newly installed Archimedes Water Spiral.

5: Step by Step This shows some of our progress from the original site, through the details of the order, then the installation of the screw itself.

6: Phase II After the installation of the water spiral, the next phase was to identify the science of the existing equipment on our playground. Our P.T.O. had added several wonderful pieces in the past few years.

7: We began by studying the laws of force and motion and the simple machines. We spent some time on the playground, taking pictures, trying some of the activities and seeing what worked. | Some of our newer equipment

8: SLIDES An inclined plane is a flat surface at an angle. A slide is an inclined plane.

10: vocabulary: air resistance force gravity inertia friction kinetic energy mass momentum

12: A swing is a pendulum.

13: A Merry-Go-Round is a wheel and axle.

14: Work is done when a force moves an object. | learning

15: An inclined plane wrapped around an axle makes work easier, although a longer distance is covered. | by doing

16: We decided to make signs for the equipment that would identify the concept demonstrated by the activity.

19: NEXT STEP: Grade level backpacks with activities and materials to do on the playground.

21: Works Cited europe2010blog. (2010, June 3). Archimedes Screw. (YouTube.com, Producer) Retrieved June 18, 2010, from YouTube.com: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MVH3f-POCFs

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  • By: Cheryl R.
  • Joined: over 6 years ago
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  • Title: The Science Playground Story
  • Tags: education, school, science, playground
  • Published: over 6 years ago

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