Interactive Science Notebooks 2

Last week I shared the first experiment I do with my students. You can check it out here. Because the Great Banana Experiment takes several days I do another experiment in the meantime. The idea for it came from Steve Spangler, and my students absolutely loved it last year!


We begin with the question: "Will taco sauce clean dirty pennies?" Working in groups we put dirty pennies in soapy water and in taco sauce, leave them for 8 minutes, and clean them off. Students are amazed to find that the best cleaner is the taco sauce! What I like about this particular activity is that it is a great way to teach that scientists usually have more questions at the end of an experiment. In this case I guide students toward the question of what ingredient in the taco sauce cleans the penny. That leads us to a second activity on a following day.

(click to download this recording brochure)

For the next experiment we test to see if water, vinegar, salt, or tomato paste work best in cleaning the penny. From now on we will discuss new questions that come up in our experiments; time limitations prevent us from being able to test but I want students to be in the habit of looking at the end of one experiment being the beginning of another. 

(click to download)

So this is where we are in the Interactive Science Notebook:

Page  1     Table of Contents
Page  2     Safety Rules
Page  3     Unit essential questions
Page  4     Left blank for vocabulary
Page  5     Banana brochure
Page  6     Left blank for notes
Page  7     Pennies and Taco Sauce brochure
Page  8     Left blank
Page  9     Taco Sauce as a Cleaner brochure

We typically glue onto the odd numbered pages and write on the even numbered pages.

Do you have some go - to activities to get kids thinking like scientists?


  1. I like the idea of sending some activities home so parents can see what they are doing. Most of ours stay in school....hmm, you have me thinking!

    Hunter's Tales from Teaching

  2. I absolutely *love* how you are incorporating inquiry science into your interactive notebooks instead of just content. Your kiddos are super lucky - if I had been taught science this way, I might know a thing or two about it today! ;)
    Thanks for linking up!

  3. I like specifying odd and even number pages as writing vs pasting pages.



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