## Monday, May 20, 2013

### Spiky Crystals

Grow crystals in your fridge with epsom salt and hot water!
Chemistry crystals (featured above) - Instructables
Cup of Quick Crystal Needles - About.com

You can also explore evaporation by growing crystals outdoors! Check out Exploratorium's Spiky Sun Crystals!

To incorporate this into a fossil unit, grow crystals on a sponge to investigate permineralization, visit Layers of Learning!

## Sunday, May 19, 2013

### Color UN-mixing

Awesome experiment from the Surfing Scientist! Kids investigate laminar flow: liquid flowing in parallel layers. They rotate a cylinder glass, watching colors mix and un-mix right before their eyes!

### Cubes and Color

How does color affect how fast an ice cube will melt from Green-Planet-Solar-Energy! Investigate the heat absorbing capacity of different colors by placing ice cubes on various colors of construction paper (make sure you include black and white). Do certain colors reflect or absorb more light? Lay the paper and cubes in a super sunny spot. Then, make a prediction, create a list of what cubes you think will melt the fastest. Have kids write the color names in a column, starting with the color they think will make the ice cube melt the fastest and ending with the color they think will melt the ice cube the slowest. Create a graph of the kids' predictions.

Green Planet also suggests a twist on the experiment. Kids test colored cubes on white paper. They use food coloring to create different colors. For a white cube they add milk. To create a black cube they add cola. They place one colored cube on each piece of white paper. Which cube will melt the fastest?!

## Friday, May 17, 2013

### Solar Energy Balloon Blow Up!

Explore the power of the sun's heat by blowing up a balloon on a bottle! Kids paint one soda bottle white and the other black. Once dry, they attach a small balloon to the necks of their bottles. Then, they put the bottles out in the sun for a solar reaction!

Kids see that the air in the black bottle will make the balloon expand! The white bottle doesn't heat up as fast. Check out the experiment here!

### Art in Numbers: Multiplication Patterns

Practice your multiplication tables by creating grid paper designs from Sharynideas! Kids identify patterns in their multiplication tables. When they identify a repeating pattern, they create art! Check out the activity here! Also, visit NRich Math for a slightly different way to create designs from your times tables!

## Thursday, May 16, 2013

### Fishing for Angles

This math station game is inspired by Art in Education's Angle Fish drawings. Kids construct a fish out of a circle, using a protractor to create its mouth (make sure each kid creates a different angle). They cut out the angle and the chunk of paper becomes the caudal fin (or tail fin).

Game: All of the fish get magnets put on them. For a fishing pole, use a stick with yarn and a magnet attached to the end. Kids go fishing for angles! When they catch a fish, they use a protractor and figure out the angle of its mouth. They write down the type of fish they caught (ex: 30 degree angle). They keep their fish. If they can't figure out the angle, they throw their fish back! Whoever has the most fish wins!

## Tuesday, May 14, 2013

### Fraction Color Spinner

Integrate math, art, and science by creating a colorful spinning toy! Kids trace a circle (at least 6 inch diameter) on poster board (or cardstock) and divide it into six equal parts. Then, they color it in, using any colors they'd like! Once it's colored, an adult punches two holes in the center of the circle. Kids measure out a 3 foot piece of string or yarn and lace it through their circle. Move the circle towards the center of the yarn (keep the one side of the string in a loop - don't pull the string all the way through). Next, tie a knot on the other side so it has a loop. Then, twist the string up by flipping the circle round and round. Pull the string outward and let it unravel. Watch it spin and the colors mix!

## Monday, May 13, 2013

### Kid Meteorologist

Become a weather watcher by making your own weather instruments!

Rain Gauge - Measure rainfall - Jameson's Lab
Visit Scholastic for a printable to go along with your rain gauge!

Wind Vane - Measure wind direction - Weather Studies

Anemometer (paper cup) - Measure wind speed - Instructables
Anemometer (different design) - Science Fair Projects

Barometer - Measure atmospheric pressure - HowCast
Balloon Barometer - Sci-Experiments and Zoom (simple version)

Thermometer - Check the temp! - JumpStart

A variety of weather experiment videos - DIY: Meteorologist

## Saturday, May 11, 2013

### Matchbox Magnetism

Integrate science and math with matchbox magnetism! Tape a magnet on a matchbox car and measure the distance you can get it to roll, while learning about magnetic poles! Once kids get the hang of it, have a magnetic matchbox drag racing competition! Kids create a racetrack and race each other, controlling their vehicles with a magnet!

### Pasta Rock

Kids take whole and broken pieces of pasta (1/2 cup) and mix it with 2 tbsp of water in a cup. They dump out the water. Then, they add 2 tbsp of glue to the wet pasta (sand - optional). They stir it around, pour it on wax paper (let it dry), and create coquina! "Coquina is a sedimentary rock (limestone) that’s formed when seawater minerals cement seashells and sand together." - Education.com. Check out the full activity here!

coquina rock image via Geology.Yoo7

## Friday, May 10, 2013

### One Inch Tall

Read the poem "One Inch Tall" from Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein. Then, pass out the "one inch tall rulers" and try to find something that measures an inch! What could you do around the classroom if you were only one inch tall? Kids use the ruler as a guide. What could they do if they were 2, 3, 4, or 5 inches tall?!

## Thursday, May 9, 2013

### Root Beer Float Science

Investigate the 3 states of matter with a tasty treat! Click here for the printable.
(Kids draw the ice cream, root beer, and foam in the mug. Then, they label: solid, liquid, or gas)

## Wednesday, May 8, 2013

### Solar Water

Investigate renewable energy, while exploring the water cycle, with this fun experiment from Agoosa! Kids magically turn salt water into fresh water with the help of solar energy!

how to:
Pour 2 cups of water into a large bowl.
Mix 3 tsp of salt into the water. Taste the water, it's super salty!
Place a small empty bowl or cup inside of the larger bowl.
Cover with plastic wrap and place outside in the sun.
Either place a rock on top of the bowl or secure the wrap with a rubber band (to keep plastic wrap tightly secured on the bowl).
Keep the bowl outside for 1 to 3 days (until you get enough purified water into your small bowl to taste).
Compare the water in the larger bowl to the water in the smaller bowl. Do you taste the difference?!

what's happening?!
The sun's rays will heat the water, causing it to evaporate!
Salt is too heavy to evaporate; so, it stays in the larger bowl.
Condensation will occur, creating water droplets on the plastic wrap.
Gravity makes the large droplets drip into the "collection container" (your small bowl) - creating fresh water!

## Tuesday, May 7, 2013

### Snail Measuring

This project is inspired by "curled paper snails" from the book Sunset Kid's Crafts - 1973.

Kids cut 1 inch width strips of construction paper.
Then, they trim their strips different lengths:
Body - 7 inches
Shell (4 rings): 12, 10, 8, and 6 inches
Kids roll their paper strips to create a shell. They roll a head on their 7 inch strip. Then, they cut tentacles (feelers) for their snail. Staple the rings to the body, glue on the tentacles, and you have a paper snail!

To incorporate this into an animal adaptation unit, have kids create a mucus trail out of glue! Create a trail on wax paper, let dry, and peel.
Mucus - glide, repulse predators, stick to surfaces
Foot - muscular organ to move
Shell - protection from predators and if environment is dry
Tentacles - two long (version of eyes) and two short (feel, taste, smell)
Visit FossWeb for more interesting facts!

### Speed Boat Chemical Reaction!

Create a chemical reaction to make a boat go from ZOOM! Similar to Bag Bomb, this experiment explores the three states of matter. Kids mix baking soda and vinegar to create CO2 to make their soda bottle boat zoom!

materials:
empty soda bottle
toilet paper
baking soda
vinegar
marbles (or another object to weigh the boat down)
a large tub of water

1. First, put marbles in the bottle and test it in water. You want the boat to be submerged.
2. Take the boat out of water. Make a hole in the bottle cap for air to seep out (using x-acto or tack). The hole should be submerged in water (when you place the bottle in the water).
Same instructions as Bag Bomb:
3. Pull off a strip of toilet paper (three sheets connected) and pour baking soda on the strip.
4. Fold and form a pocket to hold the baking soda (or roll it)
5. Add vinegar (1/4 of the soda bottle)
6. Drop the baking soda pocket in the bottle
6. Fast: Put cap on and quickly place in water!

## Friday, May 3, 2013

### 3D Collage: Measuring

Give kids different colors of construction paper. They cut 1 inch (width) strips. Then, they use a ruler and cut their strips different lengths (5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 inches) and manipulate them into different designs, creating a 3D collage. Have kids write their measurements next to each paper strip.

## Wednesday, May 1, 2013

### Lemonade Math (in a bag!)

 pouch lemonade photo - wikimedia commons (Paul Keller)
Celebrate the end of the school year with lemonade in a bag! Kids explore fractions and measuring, while creating a tasty treat! Recipe is from Education.com.

1 serving:
1/4 lemon, 1/2 cup water, 1 tsp sugar

add ingredients to ziploc bag and snap
mix, squish, and squeeze with hands
add an ice cube and a straw
sip!

Also, check out ice cream - it's in the bag!

### Translation Tessellation

A super simple tessellation for young students: translation tessellation! Kids are given a square. They cut a piece off of the left and tape or glue it on to the right. Next, they cut a piece off of the top and add it to the bottom (see image below). Then, they use their imagination and create a creature out of their irregular polygon. Once their creature is made they trace it, learning about the transformation: translation (slide)! Their pattern piece should fit perfectly (interlocking) creating a pattern with no overlaps or gaps! They can create an AB or ABC pattern with the colors they use! You can also talk about parallel lines. Their tessellation pattern runs in horizontal parallel lines!

## Tuesday, April 30, 2013

### Octopus Math

Integrate math, art and science all in one craft! Kids create an octopus, while exploring division, fractions, and multiplication! First, they divide a piece of construction paper in half. Next, they use a ruler and draw lines (on half the sheet) to create eight rectangles for the arms (see image). They cut along the lines they drew, stopping at the halfway mark. Then, they curve the paper and staple. Once stapled, they bend the arms, so the octopus can sit up.

After they created their octopus shape, they flip it over. They stick round reinforcement labels (white circle stickers with a hole in the center) on the back of its arms and create suction cup arrays! (see image) Then, they figure out the multiplication equation for their octopus.

Science - This craft can be used for an animal adaptation unit. Kids learn that octopi have arms (not legs). The suction cups on their arms help them grasp their prey, move along rocks, and taste things! Also, their stomach is on top of their head! Their mouth is a hard beak (don't let children draw a happy face on their octopus - the beak is underneath!)