Thursday, June 18, 2015

Expanding the Classroom Walls, Bell Museum of Natural History

There was a lot to been seen at the Bell Museum! I went there once with my daughter while she was attending a Montessori Pre School.  It is filled with exquisite dioramas, a star dome, artwork, hands on activities, and experiments.  

I fell in love with a couple of exhibits.  The bell museum has a whole room of activities and animals (snakes, bugs, turtles) that kids can play with and even get to touch some of the animals sometimes.  So that's a highlight for kids, but this time I was most impressed with the Honey Bee educations.  This is one that I can see being highly supported in my classroom. As you can see their were microscopes available to students to look and examine dead bees.  There was also a HUGE, 3-D diorama of a Bee Hive.  

One of the 'combs' had fallen out and I took a picture of how this diorama was certitude.  It would be fun to have students make this 3-D shape to included in a collaborative project as seen above.  I could also see this moving into a living lesson where students are building and growing a Bee environment at the school.  I would love to head that up for our school.   

I was also introduced to Marla Spivak and her TED talk.  She was the main researcher of bees from Minnesota and her work is highlighted at the Bell Museum.  Watch out, if you view this TED talk, you are going to want to put in a butterfly/bee garden tomorrow... but I guess if you don't have anything going on, that might work out perfect. 

It was also really fun to see the Art of Stanley Meltzoff.  This was a new introduction to his work for me.  I was really impressed with his paintings of underwater life.  It doesn't take too far of a stretch to imagine how this artwork could relate to a lesson or two, or three, or 100.  

Check out more about our field trips by searching the #TCWALLSI on twitter.  There are also a lot of images and information on their Facebook page. I would love for you to send links to lesson plans that you think would help support these field trips I will be posting about as well. Have you had a program like this that you were able to support in your classroom?  Send me links, pictures, or stories in the comments.  Thanks!

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