This step is about organising all of the equipment needed for the investigations. An equipment shopping list is a good place to start. Other things to consider are:
- Where will equipment be sourced eg from homes, or from nearby high schools?
- Who will be responsible for particular items?
- Where will the equipment be stored at school?
School communities, Parent and Citizen (P&C) organisations or students' parents are often very willing to help provide materials if they are aware of what is needed. A request through the school newsletter written by students could source much of the equipment that is needed.
Students should have access to appropriate equipment for science investigations and not be limited by a lack of resources. Each KLA in the primary curriculum requires particular tools – PDHPE requires sport equipment, Mathematics requires measuring devices (also useful for science investigations), English requires readers or novels. Your school needs science resources. These can be borrowed but why not have your own collection?
Suggested resources include:
- electronic scales that can weigh small items or small weight changes for investigations such as 'Which mulch is the best for keeping soil moist?' or 'Which fabric absorbs the least/most amount of water?'
- simple data loggers that measure temperature, sound, light, humidity, air pressure and which have the possibility for additional probes.
- volumetric measures with finely graded measurements.
- a range of magnets (different sizes and shapes) for investigations such as 'Are large magnets stronger than small magnets?'
Role of mentors
Mentors can assist with guidance on the selection of equipment, and may even be able to assist with sourcing equipment though this should not be an expectation.