Aikman loves experiments, and I look for opportunities to incorporate math and science into those experiments. However, I am not the best at figuring out ideas on my own. That’s where AIMS has come in handy for the past few weeks!
AIMS -- Activities Integrating Math and Science – is a non-profit foundation based out of Fresno Pacific University that creates activity books designed to give kids a conceptual understanding of these two subjects.
AIMS’ Promises to You:
- We'll make learning engaging.
- We'll make our activities affordable, and the required materials will be readily available.
- We'll make our activities easy to use, without compromising their conceptual development or effectiveness.
The first AIMS book was developed in 1981 from a grant from the National Science Foundation. The main focus is on math and science, but has since expanded to include books on language arts and social studies.
I was given the chance to review AIMS activity book What on Earth? for grades K-1. The book is primarily based upon earth science, but it also includes a section on the sun and moon. Topics include conservation/natural resources, rocks and soil, water, earth changes, sun and moon, and the seasons. Thirty different experiments and activities are included. A CD also comes with the book that includes pdf versions of the student activities.
Since we have been discussing space and the moon here at our house, this is where we started! We decided to try “Moon Go Round” which discusses the different phases of the moon. The lesson within the book includes learning objectives, a list of materials used, background information, management tips on making the lesson successful, steps to complete the craft/lesson, and follow-up questions to ask. I really like that the lesson included a literature connection, “Papa, Please Get the Moon for Me” by Eric Carle. Likewise, this lesson also included a song that talks about the changing appearance of the moon.
Here’s our craft for the phases of the moon. The goal is to go out and look at the moon and mark which phase you are on with a clothespin. Over time, the child discovers that the phases of the moon cycle back around to the first phase that you started on.
We have enjoyed using this book so much that I truly cannot wait to start the “Changes” unit, which discusses changes to the environment due to hurricanes, earthquakes, volcanoes, ocean waves, and fault lines. What I really love about this book, compared to the many, MANY other resources that we own is that the ideas in here are not the same ‘ole experiments that you’ve seen a hundred times before. For example, in the hurricane lesson, it has the child examining images of the aftermath of hurricanes, and then has the child to try to construct a hurricane-proof house. I also love the ocean waves lesson, where the child discovers that water, air, and ice cause erosion.
You can purchase What on Earth? for $21.95 in pdf or print formats through their online store. We have loved this book so much that I’m contemplating purchasing others books from AIMS, such as Earth’s Explorations and It’s about Time. Read what other crew members think about AIMS here.
Disclosure: I received a copy of What on Earth? in exchange for a review. I received no other compensation. The book Papa, Please Get the Moon for Me is linked to my amazon astore.