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Slow As Molasses…May Not Always Be True!

molasses_content2.jpgSecond graders studied The Great Molasses Flood of 1919, and discovered that molasses is not always slow. In fact, during this great disaster in Boston’s North End, the molasses was traveling up to 35 MPH, destroying everything in its path.

During this expedition, Second graders first learned about different liquids through their science unit. They learned about the concept of viscosity—some liquids move faster than others. They also learned to observe, and they learned how to ask questions and design experiments to get answers to their questions.

Second graders also dove into history for the first time. They constructed a historical timeline and started to explore the concept of “a very very long time ago” like when the dinosaurs roamed the earth, to “long ago” like when their parents were born. While they were enthralled with the details of the Great Molasses Flood, they were also very intrigued by the idea of what life was like in 1919. They looked at pictures of Cambridge from that time period, and examined similarities and differences between then and now. They also created individual timelines of their own lives to parallel the historical timelines in their classrooms.

molasses_content.pngThroughout this expedition, students were working hard on building their skills in reading and writing non-fiction. They read several historical accounts of the Great Molasses Flood, and also read a great deal of other non-fiction to develop these skills. In writing, they worked on writing a retelling of the historical event as well as writing engaging captions for pictures they had examined.

The project culminated in a curriculum share with parents on January 23rd. Students displayed their own personal timelines, their science research about liquids, and historical pictures with captions they had penned themselves. They hope to eventually share some of their learning with other students and teachers across the district who may think that learning about liquids is kind of boring… these students have found this to be anything but true!