Saturday, February 18, 2012

CC Science Club: Chinese New Year

Yes, yes, this happened in January.  So sue me.  We use a book I picked up at the library, but you can also get it on Amazon.  For the January lesson, we talked about phase changes.  

First, we read a few books about the Chinese New Year.  Then we made a Venn Diagram about the differences and similarities between the Chinese and the American New Years.  The kids did really well! 

Next I did a demo by making poppers that were completely unsuccessful at the library (using off-brand alka-seltzer and water in an old-school film canister, which was really hard to find!) but worked at home.  It was supposed to tie in with the "Fireworks/explosions" portion of the Venn Diagram.  Next we separated into groups and showed how a liquid (vinegar) and a solid (baking soda) can produce a reaction in the form of a gas (carbon dioxide), which we could see by inflating a balloon over a soda bottle. 

Helpful hint: Use a paper cone to pour the baking soda into the balloon.  Measure the vinegar into the soda bottle, and then attach the balloon to the top of the bottle.  When you stand the balloon up, the baking soda goes in, but you've got all the time in the world to attach your balloon, unlike if you try to mix the elements and THEN put the balloon on top. 

Then it was time for snack and crafts!! The book (and my original plan) suggests doing mini egg rolls, but since there were supposed to be too many kids to have it at my house (fully 1/2 of the people who RSVP'd didn't come), we were at the library and I wasn't sure what our kitchen options were going to be, so we did popcorn (get it, it's popping/exploding?)

Then the kids worked on a really simple craft that I based on a Pinterest find. This was also a second choice, the first choice craft involved paint, which I decided was a bad idea at the library, but the kids seemed to enjoy making puppets, and they're younger, so this was good.

 We had a great time! The science club idea seems to work well for us and for our CC friends! I didn't take any pictures from our February club, which we had this week on Monday, but we did polymers using Teflon Tape and plastic bags.  We had fun learning we could stretch vertically and distort the images and then pull horizontally and realign the molecules! Our crafts were just fun heart-shaped foam activities from Michaels.  I had a bunch of events that all happened on the same day, so a CC friend greatly blessed me by saying she'd bring a craft.  I really didn't feel like I fit in our community at the beginning of the year (I still don't) but I've been very supported by

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