11/7 - Upper Grades Science ET

A packed day of science exploration around the city

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Read about our Upper Grades Science Expeditionary Thursday Adventures last week!


Students carried out their Kirby-Bauer lab, learning about and writing their significance and hypothesis sections of their lab report. In addition, students conducted water testing for coliform bacteria (including E. coli) at our local waterway - the Gowanus Canal. The Kirby Bauer lab is a scientific protocol used to test the efficacy of antibiotics on the growth of e. Coli. It involves inoculating a petri dish with E. coli, then applying antibiotic disks. Students considered the question: Why is understanding the treatment of E. coli relevant and important? Finally, students researched and crafted a hypothesis so they are prepared for data collection the following day.


Students explored and analyzed the Red Hook neighborhood in terms of elevation above sea level and buildings at risk in a future of sea level rise and coastal flooding events, focusing on the question: How do cartographers (map-makers) collect and analyze geoscience data to make predictions about future climate change impacts in this particular neighborhood?


Students visited a Cogeneration plant in the Brooklyn Navy Yard to see how electricity and steam are generated for the city. Then students observed an electrical substation to get first-hand knowledge of what these important parts of the NYC electrical grid look like.
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Students demonstrated their classroom learning with a real-world challenge. In the morning, student groups planned their route to a common destination in Red Hook and determined their units to measure position and time. Then they walked to this location, collecting data along the way, then made the return trip doing the same. In the afternoon, students represented this motion in four different ways: graphically, algebraically, in a written description and with a motion map.


Students were in one of three groups: 1) with Luz Guel, Community Engagement Coordinator at Mount Sanai’s Transdisciplinary Center on Early Environmental Exposures - students worked through three different modules on Community Science and Data Collection and received a certification at the end of the day. In the afternoon, students practiced collecting air quality samples in the surrounding neighborhood. 2) with Dr. Eisl, Barry Commoner Center for Health and the Environment at Queens College - students participated in a lecture on the NYC Community Air Survey, in partnership with the DOH, and then toured their lab facilities. 3) at the Arcadia Earth exhibit - students spent the morning learning about various air quality activists and their sustainability projects. In the afternoon, students visited the interactive exhibit to see how small lifestyle changes can impact the quality of air on Earth.


Students learned about different classifications of organisms by drawing scientific diagrams of organisms from different clades at the American Museum of Natural History. This will help them create higher quality models of ecosystems throughout the semester.
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