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Titanic's Lost Sister

Ideas from Teachers


(Gr. 3-5)
This activity could be used with NOVA's "Titanic's Lost Sister" program. This idea is in our reading text. Take a dark tub (not see through) and fill with soapy water. Drop some small items in the water. Explain to your students that they must figure out what is in the tub of soapy water without moving, dumping or reaching into the water. They cannot get any part of themselves wet.

Give groups of students a clear glass filled with all sorts of building materials (pens, pencil, paper clips, tape, napkin, glue, whatever). Explain to students that they can only use these materials to find what is in the tub and they cannot move bubbles to clear a space.

Give them some time to work.

As groups work, have them document each of their inventions by listing the invention's name, materials used, and why they think their inventions will work.

Hopefully, someone will realize that if you take the clear glass and place it in the water, you can see through it into the bottom. All the other materials are used for distraction. (And of course some humorous inventions.)

Explain that that is sort of how Robert Ballard had to find the Titanic. He couldn't send divers (no wet hands), he really didn't even know where it was.

It is a fun lesson, but be sure to do some preventative teaching or you will have a soapy mess.

Enjoy!

Sent in by
Michelle Lee
Guadalupe Elementary
Lubbock, TX
kelee@ttu.edu


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