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DOUBLE TAP TO ZOOM ON PHONE OR TABLET Dear Families: To begin our study of physical science, we are studying pushes and pulls. These are common experiences for children everywhere they go. You can help support our science investigations by using appropriate language as you provide company for your children. A force is a push or a pull . It changes the movement of an object—sometimes speeding it up or slowing it down, sometimes changing the direction of its movement, sometimes changing its position. An object in motion remains in motion until forces like friction slow it down. Almost every time you enter a door of a commercial building, there will be a sign saying “Push” or “Pull.” Read these signs as you demonstrate their meaning to your child. While you are at home, ask your child to help you push or pull. The grocery cart, the lawn mower, and the vacuum cleaner can all be tools for learning. We are using a spring scale to measure pulls. Pushes and pulls are especially important in sports. We push a bat or a soccer ball. We pull when we wrestle or play tug-of-war. We are also marking the pushes and pulls we feel on photos of children as they play. When we use science words to reinforce these ideas at home, it makes learning a lot more fun. Many of our science lessons integrate science with technology, engineering, and mathematics. You might be familiar with the acronym STEM, which stands for science, technology, engineering, and math. STEM is not a separate subject, but a way of thinking. STEM learning emphasizes problem solving and innovation. Your children may take the ideas from our lessons and apply them to questions that they invent themselves. “How hard do I have to push to make a big box move?” “What happens when I pull on the chain for this ceiling light?” When the experience is safe, encourage your children to try! And in the conversation that follows, make sure that you leave room for ideas that include measurement and invention. Thanks for being great STEM partners. And have fun. From Teaching STEM Literacy: A Constructivist Approach by Juliana Texley and Ruth M. Ruud © 2018. Published by Redleaf Press, www.redleafpress.org. This page may be reproduced for classroom use only. COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL