Features of the Magnet Model:
• Manipulate parts. This magnet board allowed students to manipulate characters and slide them around on the board to illustrate their ideas while they narrated their science story. A variety of magnet characters were available showing different weights and sizes (ie. Sumo wrestler, the Hulk, a small baby, a boy, girl, dog, etc.)
• Key places. The model also has RED dots on 5 places. These 5 places are parts that students must pause to explain what is happening. In general, phenomena students are explaining will likely have 3 to 7 key places. By marking key places on the magnet model, the teacher points out to students where key places of the science story take place – focusing their attention around these events/steps.
• Science word cards. Having a set of science word cards available helps students label the magnet model and also supports students’ writing and familiarity with reading and identifying science words. In this particular example, students demanded more “push” and “pull” word cards because as the boy climbed the ladder he pushed with his legs and pulled with his arms and so each rung needed alternating push-pull-push-pull and then they needed more push words for what happened at the bottom of the slide.