Wednesday, November 24, 2010

M&M Math

So, I was going to do an experiment involving chromatography and M&Ms. I found a great description online and I even asked my students to give up their Halloween M&Ms for the cause! Well, I tried the experiment- nothing happened. I tried the experiment the next day with a different blotting paper- nothing happened. Then, I pouted, stressed, and scoured the internet to find out what I was doing wrong! Well, I gave up after I found out that M&Ms changed their formula and took out color additives that made the chromatography work. Then I ignored the looming science fair deadline, considered just doing what I did last year (I already had the board!) and moaned my dilemma to my husband. I decided to deal with the change, use magic markers, get the experiment and board done, and get rid of this headache! My experiment was a success. My class learned really big words (5th grade words!) and we had a great showing in the science fair. BUT- I had M&Ms... lots of M&Ms to get rid of. So, I surprised my sprouts at math time! We sorted the M&Ms and counted parts/whole.. since we are getting ready to add. They enjoyed the edible manipulatives much more then the red and yellow counters we usually use.

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