Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Science Camp: Week Two: Space Camp

This week is space week.  Last week was weather.  So far so good, I'm excited about the topics we did today.

I told the kids about the life of a star and fusion as well as explaining how telescopes work.  Tomorrow I am going to point the telescope out the window for them.  Sadly I cannot show them the stars because I only have them in the morning.

I've really been enjoying myself.  I'm even enjoying the stress of it all.

I'm going to have to come to some sense of balance to manage by blog and my responsibilities.  I will keep my promise about my next major post, but until then I will update about camp and interesting things that are happening.

Keep learning!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Camp: The First Two Days

I have been busier than I thought I would be the last few days.  On the upside I've been having a blast!

After my first afternoon doing this science summer camp I told my mom "I can't wait until I'm doing this for the rest of my life."  Even when I get frustrated I'm happy.  This past spring I kept thinking the words "I've arrived" when I was out at the observatory during a public night.  I keep thinking those words again.  What I mean by this is; I've become comfortable enough that I can answer most questions without prep and I am also comfortable with what I don't know.  I can enjoy the process of finding out myself or learning that I have more to learn.

Shanda and I are goofing around here.  We found these masks among other  supplies.
For example, we were talking about evaporation.  Shanda, a teacher I'm working with, posed the question "What happens if you add food coloring to water and let the water evaporate?  Does the food coloring stay in the cup or does it evaporate too?"  We were not sure of the answer and we had a discussion with the kids.  During the next break when the kids had some play time we realized that we had all the components to concoct an experiment.  In the discussion I pointed out that if you boiled sea water, you would be left with salt.

Our experiment was set up like this:  we put water, salt and blue food coloring into a ceramic mug.

Regular table salt and blue water.  Plus you can see that I took off my mask.
I then heated the mug on a hot plate to expedite the evaporation process.

Boiling blue salt water!  Next is a video if you are interested.

 We determined that we could make blue salt!  The kids thought this was very cool. 
 We had a lot of fun with this.  (Well I did at least!)  Soon we will be doing some crafts with the kids.  Hopefully I will get some good pictures of that.

I will answer the second question that I proposed soon.  I just wanted to share this first.  Again, my schedule has gotten away from me but I'm enjoying every minute of it.

I can't wait for tomorrow at camp.  Night everyone!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Question Two

And for my next trick, I mean post, I will be writing about fire.

Like moths drawn to the flame, you will be drawn to my next post!

I'm in a goofy mood, but I am going to blog about fire next time.  What it is, why it displays the properties it does.  And the title with be: Fire: Why blue is hotter than red; and what it is.

In other news, I will be volunteering at a local science center for one of their summer camps.  I'm excited about this.  I will be doing the demonstrations.  The summer camp is meteorology based so the experiments are simulating weather conditions and demonstrating related properties.  For example: I get to crush a can.  Some of you know what that is.  I'm very excited about this.  I will be can crushing in front of second graders.

For those of you who don't know what that is:  Video.  He does a pretty good job of explaining what's happening, but you if anyone wants me to explain it please comment or e-mail me.

I probably won't be posting tomorrow there's a parade and a birthday party that I will be going to.  But I should be posting on Sunday.

Monday, June 11, 2012

The First Question To Be Answered Is...

Why are moths attracted to light?

I was sitting in my living room watching a moth bounce against the window trying to get closer to the light inside. At the same time I found myself wondering what my first blog post should be.  I found it fitting that I should start this blog off with a question that I don't know myself.  So I will do some research tonight and post the answer tomorrow.

I look forward to learning something new with you.