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  • Writer's pictureCarolyn Balch

Displaying Science Equipment

Updated: May 18, 2018

Now that we've taken care of our small supplies and our unit equipment what else do we have to think about? Is there anything we could put on display? Are there things we could put out to make a room more engaging and look like a science classroom? 

What about microscopes, glassware, or engaging equipment like a skeleton or a Van de Graaff machine? These are the items I like to have out in the open if possible—I want folks to come in and to know exactly what goes on in our classroom, and think, “Yup, this is a science classroom.”  

One of the few rules in our classroom is, “touch with a purpose.” If students are going to handle and play with the equipment, I’d like them to do so intentionally, as a scientist would. Once the students have learned how to use items like the Van de Graaff machine, they’re welcome to use it as they have time to do so.

The glassware (mostly plastic) sits on a shelf near our sink. In addition to the typical pipettes, graduated cylinders, test tubes, and flasks, we’ve also collected plastic spoons, scales, trays, measuring cups, and spoons. In general, I tend to add stuff to the collection as we have a need for it.

In addition to the items that are on display, there are a number of items that are too large for the bins—some of these are general items, like meter sticks, and others are specific to various units like ramps for simple machine units, or fluorescent tubes from our static electricity unit. I look for obvious and not-so-obvious places to tuck items away, so they’re accessible but not in the way. 

If you missed the first two posts you can find them here:

Next week I’ll share about clean up tips—not an expert on that one, but I learned the hard way ☺

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