I’m the Queen/King of the Castle

Contributed by: Gordon Webb

Grade 1: Structures and Mechanisms


  • An object is held together by its structure.
  • The materials and structure of an object determine its purpose.

Inquiry Skills Used

This is a hands-on activity with students exploring and experimenting to produce a structurally sound building using various materials.

Safety Considerations

Students should be reminded about safe practices regarding the use of scissors.


Structures can be made from various materials.

The soundness of the structure is dependent on how these materials are made into various structures and used in combination to create a solid structure.

What You Need

  • Straws
  • Bamboo cooking skews
  • Coloured tissue paper or other thin paper
  • Scissors
  • Glue, tape or staples
  • Toilet/paper towel rolls
  • String
  • Construction paper
  • Templates of a cone, rectangular prism, cylinder
  • Corrugated cardboard for a base


What to Do

1. Start by reading a story about different types of castles to the class.

2. Brain storm with the class about which shapes can be       used in a castle.

  • cone and cylinder make a tower
  • a rectangular prism makes a keep or a wall

This activity can be done individually or in groups.

3. Distribute the materials to the class.

4. Demonstrate how to convert a cone and cylinder into a wall tower.

5. Have the students explore how to connect the towers and how the occupants of the castle will get in and out of the castle.

6. Provide an example of a pre-made castle, using the various components, or demonstrate using pictures.

Where to Go from Here?

Students can learn more about structures of a castle in the following websites:



Have the students explore the following:

  • What is the purpose of your structure?
  • What materials did you use to build your structure?
  • Why did you choose those materials instead of _____ to build your structure?
  • What did you use to fasten your structure together?
  • What might happen to the materials in your structure when it is no longer being used?

STSE Links

Discuss with the students the various materials used to build houses and which would be stronger or more durable.

Cross Curricular Connections


  • The teacher can combine this activity with literacy, reading the story, The Three Little Pigs or Three pigs, A Wolf and Seven Magic Shapes by Grace Maccarone, and comparing the materials used to build the various structures.


  • The structures can be made of three-dimensional shapes.


Recycle Your Electronics: Classroom Activities to Teach Stewardship

recycle electronicsBy Sandra Pakosh

Curriculum Connection: Grade 9 Applied and Academic — Physics, Technology

We all love our electronics. We never go anywhere without them and we want to keep up with the latest and greatest tech toys.

Did you know electronics contain gold and other precious metals? They are also made with some hazardous materials, and contain recyclables like glass, plastic, and metal. That’s why it’s a lot more efficient to recycle these materials safely than to dig them from the ground or to remake them.

But, what do we do with our out-of-use electronics? What is the responsible choice?

Our job at RecycleYourElectronics.ca is to make sure that there is a safe, environmentally responsible way to reuse or recycle electronics.

RecycleYourElectronics.ca is operated by Ontario Electronic Stewardship (OES), and is a not-for-profit organization funded and governed by the electronics industry producers. RecycleYourElectronics.ca offers a convenient and secure way for Ontario residents and businesses to recycle electronics free of charge. We believe that we have a shared responsibility to take care of electronics here in the province we call home;,using high environmental and health and safety standards. So we divert these items from landfill, using local service providers who adhere to strict regulations and standards, including techniques to ensure sensitive data, such as your personal information and photographs, are destroyed in the recycling process.

That’s where you come in. Learn how to reuse or recycle your electronics. Take action by collecting electronics at home, in your school and in your community.

Help divert electronic waste from landfill and protect our environment. Remember the three Rs: reduce, reuse, and recycle. Use your electronics as long as possible.

When you have to replace your electronics, take the old or unwanted item(s) free of charge to one of hundreds of
approved collection depots, sites or events. Go to www.recycleyourelectronics.ca to find out where and how.

On the following pages, you’ll find some activities to do with your class, to help teach about electronics recycling.

Taking care now will mean a greener tomorrow for us all.

Click here for the Teacher’s Activity Guide.


Sandra Pakosh is the Director of Communications at Ontario Electronic Stewardship. From: Grade 9 Science and Technology Electricity Student Activities Guides by RecycleYourElectronics.ca, a free resource.

Theory vs. Hypothesis vs. Law… Explained!

Think you know the difference?
Tweet ⇒ http://bit.ly/OKTBStheory Share on FB ⇒ http://bit.ly/theoryFB
↓ More info and sources below ↓

Some people try to attack things like evolution by natural selection and man-made climate change by saying “Oh, that’s just a THEORY!”

Yes, they are both theories. Stop saying it like it’s a bad thing! It’s time we learn the difference between a fact, a theory, a hypothesis, and a scientific law.
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