Saturday, August 27, 2011

A Late Birthday Post

Joseph turned 3 earlier this month but with dance and garden produce life took me away from the blog for basically the whole month.  We had a quiet birthday relatively speaking.  With five kids I define quiet a bit differently than Webster's would.

Waiting for a dentist appointment one July day Samuel and I ran across this cute cupcake idea in an old issue of Family Fun.  I knew instantly it would be the perfect birthday cake for Joseph.  He loves to sign and say the word fish..."ish".  They were surprisingly easy to put together, easy enough that a seven year old could make the finished product look like a candy fish.
Joseph didn't waste any time eating the candy off the top, and then the frosting and then most of the cake.  That's what 3 year olds do.  I on the other hand like to have equal parts of candy, frosting and cake in my bite, but that's what grown-ups do.

There were presents.  And he liked to open them slowly, tearing off some paper and then shredding it to bits before tearing off more wrapping.  Sam could only take this so long before he jumped in to help speed up the process.

He needed fall clothes to fit his expanding waistline.  Oh wait that's me with the expanding waistline.  But still he needed some good fall clothes for good fall days.  The boys were horrified that he got so many clothes and the girls were jealous.  I can't do anything right.
Hands down his favorite gift was the tractor loader and the regifted plastic bear (from Sam).  I still love all the new clothes, especially the pajamas because the girls argue over who's going to get him ready for bed and that means my job is a tad easier.  I wonder if I got a new washing machine if they'd argue over who gets to do the laundry.  I bet not!

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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Summer Science Day

Late last month I hosted a summer science day.  A group of mostly homeschooled kids attended.  They took part in three science experiments. 

The first experiment was making a baking soda volcano.  Amber and I constructed the volcano in advance and then we did the experiment all together.  The result of mixing baking soda and vinegar is a bubbly, oozing eruption.  Kids of all ages dig this!  The teacher in me couldn't just do the fun part I had to make a poster chart with words like reaction and carbonic acid and arrows,because all chemical reactions involve arrows.  See the kids' faces?  Don't they look excited while I'm pointing to the chart.

They look much more interested here.

Up next was the Chemistry of Blood.  This was fun and something I had never done before.  First we discussed the different blood types and defined the words antigen and antibody.  Then we conducted the experiment.  I had mixed "blood" samples ahead of time and then had kids volunteer to combine different "blood" types and discuss the outcome.  They caught on quick to the idea of certain blood types being compatible and others not.  We then discussed universal donor and universal receiver and using the blood type stickers I put on their hands they figured out who they could donate blood to and who they could receive blood from.  This worked well and got them moving around a bit.

The last experiment of the day before we indulged in a pile of yummy snacks was "Just For the Sport of It", an experiment in physics.  This experiment held the kid's interest, but the results for us were sketchy.  The predictions were consistent with the "right" answer, but our results didn't prove our predictions to be correct.  I pointed out that many factors are involved in getting the most accurate results.  Precision is important in science and maybe we conducted our experiment a bit sloppy.

Disclaimer:  Dow Chemical provided me with compensation for supplies.  All opinions and comments are completely mine.
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