PHILADELPHIA — GlaxoSmithKline’s Science in the Summer (www.scienceinthesummer.com) returns to the Greater Philadelphia area for its 27th year. Sponsored by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), the free educational program is administered by The Franklin Institute and conducted in partnership with local libraries. Using simple, inquiry-based, hands-on experiments and everyday objects, GSK’s Science in the Summer provides students entering 2nd through 6th grades with first-hand knowledge of complex concepts, such as Newton’s laws of motion, what causes static electricity and how genetic traits make us who we are.
Following is a fun science activity from the program curriculum that families can do at home. Please note: For optimum safety, an adult should be present during all experiments. Also, children should wear safety glasses when conducting experiments at home and school.
Starting Your Own Seed Collection
What is a seed? Seeds carry the beginnings of plants inside of them. A seed has a seed coat covering it for protection. Seeds come in different sizes and shapes and can be found in different locations on the plant.
You will need: An adult, envelopes or sandwich bags to hold seeds, several sheets of paper or a notebook, pencil, glue and a newspaper.
Activity: Please follow the following steps:
1) SEARCH: With an adult helper, go on a seed expedition, starting in your kitchen. Beans and nuts are seeds. Collect only dried beans and nuts that are in their shells. Seeds also may be found in apples, pears, oranges, strawberries and melons. Put every kind of seed in its own bag or envelope and label it. Continue your expedition outside. Can you find the helicopters dropped by maple trees? Those are seeds. So are acorns, pinecones, sunflowers, dandelion puffs, etc.
2) SORT: When your collection is complete, carefully sort your different kinds of seeds onto a sheet of newspaper.
3) DISPLAY: Glue your seeds to the sheets of paper. Under each kind of seed, write down its name and where you found it.
4) ANALYZE: When your collection is complete, look at the different kinds of seeds. Which seeds are biggest and which are smallest? Which kinds of plants produce the most seeds, and which produce the fewest? Is there anything that all seeds seem to have in common?
Taught by certified teachers, GSK’s Science in the Summer courses vary by county and continue through early August. This summer, students will learn about Simple Machines (Bucks County), Physical Science & Electricity (Chester County), Bioscience (Delaware County), Genetics (Montgomery County) and Chemistry (Philadelphia County). For more information about the program, please visit www.scienceinthesummer.com or your local library.
About GlaxoSmithKline – one of the world's leading research-based pharmaceutical and healthcare companies – is committed to improving the quality of human life by enabling people to do more, feel better and live longer. For further information, go to us.gsk.com, follow us on twitter.com/GSKUS or visit our blog (www.morethanmedicine.us.gsk.com/blog/).
About The Franklin Institute – Founded in honor of America’s first scientist, Benjamin Franklin, The Franklin Institute is a renowned and innovative leader in the field of science and technology learning, as well as a dynamic center of activity. It is dedicated to creating a passion for science by offering new and exciting access to science and technology in ways that would dazzle and delight its namesake. For more information, please visit The Franklin Institute on the Web at www.fi.edu, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TheFranklinInstitute or follow on twitter.com/TheFranklin.
###Editor’s Note: Teacher, student, and sponsor spokespersons are available for interviews and live demos. Please contact Camille Dager at 215-440-9800 or Camille@hbmadv.com for contacts and/or downloads.