On the 14th of May we had our second science lesson conducted by the scientists from GTAC. (to read about the first go to - To read the students’s reflections follow the links to their own blogs on the left of this page)

For this second session Jacinta and Chris first went over over the POE (predict, observe, explain) process. Although we’d introduced this in class Jacinta opened it up further with a particular focus on how we use our various senses as we observe.

Next students got to apply the POE approach, see second slide show below.

Finally, as they have done on previous lessons, Chris and Jacinta had the students physically act out what the gas and liquid particles were doing during the experiment.


“This week, the people from GTAC, Chris and Jacinta came to our school and explained the gas state to us. Firstly, we looked at the senses that we use in the labs. We use see, hear, smell and feel but not taste. We don’t use taste in the lab because of all of the dangerous chemicals. We then did and experiment to how gas particles react when touching other particles.  We put a ping pong ball into a jug of water and then pushed a cup onto it and pushed the ping pong ball and the cup down into the bottom of the jug. Only a bit of water was in the cup, and the ping pong ball was floating in that.”

Tom (click here to read his full post on his own blog)


Term 1 Project Reflection:

In Term One we learnt about …

Three facts I found interesting and surprising:

  • (List as dot points, write as full sentences and paragraphs)


Two Understandings I now have:

  • (List as dot points, write as full sentences and paragraphs)


One Wondering I still have is:

  • (List as dot points, write as full sentences and paragraphs)


What were the most important things I learnt?

Write as full sentences and paragraphs.

How did I learn it?

Write as full sentences and paragraphs.

What am I going to do with what I have learnt?

Write as full sentences and paragraphs.

Finally end with a wrap up statement.

A good example of how to write a unit reflection like this can be found at:


As a part of this term’s unit scientists from GTAC will come in and conduct several hands on lessons in the science lab. This is part of the States of Matter unit which the 5/6 team has developed in cooperation with Jacinta and Chris  from GTAC.

Our teaching team first met Jacinta and Chris when we took our students on an excursion to GTAC last year. It didn’t take long to realise we had many convergent goals which lead to us putting our experiences together to create this unit.

Over the course of this term while our teaching team will deliver many of the lessons Jacinta and Chris will also be coming to MPPS to work directly with our students. We are also fortunate to have our own science lab (a rarity for many primary schools) which is where these lessons will take place.

Finally we will again be taking all our classes to GTAC, near Uni High, for a full day of activities. We will be going next week which is Education Week, which this year has the theme ‘Scientists Do Amazing Things’.

Last week for our first session conducted by the GTAC scientists Chris was joined by Maria. Below are Afrah and Eamon’s reflections on the lessons. To read fuller accounts of their experiences, and that of other students, click on the links to their individual blogs on the left of this page

“On May the 6th, 2014, the 5/6s of Moonee Ponds Primary School had a visit from some people from GTAC (Gene Technology Access Centre). As out term topic is chemistry, two people (Maria and Chris) who specialize in this area explained the components of solids and liquids.

In the science lab, the 5/6s had a chance to explore and experiment with solids and liquids to expand our knowledge. Chris and Maria set us a series of activities in order for us to understand the changes liquids and solids go through.”

Afrah 5/6B


“Yesterday we went to the science room to see Chris and Maria from GTAC. They were excited to teach us about Solids and Liquids.

We got into groups and did four challenges against other groups. One we did was to move play dough from one end of the classroom to the other. We couldn’t touch the play dough, and we had to pick it up with tongs. We then had to place it into a container that had holes in both ends and carry it across the room. Chris showed us what both Solids and Liquids would look like. In a Solid the atoms squish together and in Liquid they shake hands for 3 seconds then move on.

Something interesting was that the golden syrup is slower than water.My questions are ‘Why are some liquids stickier then others?’ and ‘Why do Solid atoms look the same as liquid atoms but feel different?’”

Eamon 5/6A

“On the 6th of May the year 6 house and vice captains had their first session with the Preps. At lunch time the year 6s went down to the Prep area and worked with some of the Preps on ‘Picking teams, taking turns and being fair’. In partners we took groups of three and talked to them about how we do all of these things in years 5/6.

We talked to them about how we pick fair teams. For example we would give everyone a number (1 or 2) and that way we had 2 even teams. We taught them a few games like paper, scissors, rock and twenty one. By knowing these games they can settle arguments like who’s ‘it’ in tiggy.

We year 6s will be doing this every Tuesday at the first half of lunch for the rest of the term. We will move on to teaching them ball games and so on later. I know I had fun and I think everyone else involved did to.”



The last two weeks have been busy for many of our year 6 school leaders. The Library Monitors have met with Liz several times as they prepare for the Premier’s Reading Challenge and Book Week. Jess’ Science Lab Captains have also been busy helping her prepare for the 5/6 science incursions.

As a part of this term’s unit scientists from GTAC will come in and conduct several hands on lessons in the science lab. This is part of the States of Matter unit which the 5/6 team has developed in cooperation with Jacinta and Chris from GTAC.

Finally our House Captains and Vice Captains started another exciting cross age activity involving the Preps. Our old students have begun talking to the younger students about games they can play out in the yard. The goal is that they younger students will develop an understanding of the type of games and activities they may want to play in the yard and with the equipment available to them. They’ll also explore some strategies around picking teams, being inclusive and taking turns.

Over the next couple of weeks they will explore:

week 1 – picking teams, taking turns, being fair etc

week 2 – playground games – elastics, different variations of tiggy, marbles etc

week 3 – ball games

week 4 – skipping games

week 5 – clapping games

This is a new part of the House Captains’ role and I thank all of them for volunteering their time.