This afternoon in Year 2 we began a new companion project – Will It Degrade? We looked at photographs of litter in the ocean and discussed what we could see, why this happens and how it makes us feel. The children expressed that it made them feel sad for the wildlife, and annoyed that people weren’t making good choices. We also watched a video explaining The Great Pacific Garbage Patch – a huge patch of litter that has grown to the size of a country (there is some debate as to just how big it is!). We identified all of the different materials we could see in the litter patch such as wood, plastic, cardboard and metal.
We then discussed how materials degrade over time, and thought about how long it might take for different materials to degrade. We learned that the combination of salty sea water, the motion of the waves and sunshine help to speed up the process of materials degrading.
To investigate this, we made a solution of salty water. The children helped to measure the salt out and then stir it gently into the water until it dissolved.
We filled jars with a variety of materials – one in each jar. We labelled them and gave them a good shake to represent the waves! We will take turns to shake them every day for six weeks. We will then take the materials out of the jars to see how they have degraded over time, and compare them with photographs that we took today. Amazing engagement and discussions today Year 2, well done!