The Times invites educators to submit articles highlighting programs and activities happening in schools. For more information, email email@example.com.
Teachers at Centennial Elementary School use a new program called Mystery Science to spice things up.
Mystery Science ditches the textbook and uses engaging videos and experiments to teach science concepts.
For each grade level there are four key ideas the students will learn throughout the year. In third grade, for example, the four topics throughout the year are plant life cycle and hereditary, animal survival and hereditary, weather and climate, and forces, motion and magnets.
Within each topic there are four to five mysteries about those big topics that the students explore.
Mystery Science poses a question to the students that by the end of the mystery they should be able to answer. For example, “Why do plants grow flowers?” is one question posed to third-grade students learning about plants.
During this mystery the students explore pollination through videos and class discussions. Then, after the videos, they are given an experiment to complete.
“As a teacher, I love that Mystery Science goes right along with our Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)," said Mrs. Michelle Tyne. "The questions focus student attention, and my class always has engaging conversations about the topics.”
Students also really love Mystery Science.
“I like that we get to work together (on the experiments) and it’s really fun," said Genevieve Farris, a third-grader in Rachel Reff’s class.