Sunday, May 15, 2011

Science In The Third Grade

My son loves doing science experiments. His favorite thing to do is to drop mentos into diet coke. It has to be diet coke, not the super sugary kind. And it has to be somewhat warm, not cold. And you have to do this outside. You drop five or six mentos quickly in to a 2 liter bottle of diet coke and then run for shelter. I have seen it spray up to 20 feet in the air. Perfect for a little boy. What a mess it makes.

He also loves learning about rockets. How they fly? What makes them stable? He can explain how rockets fly using Newton’s Law of Motion. An object that is not in motion will remain not in motion until acted upon by an outside force. The motor exploding against the launch pad causes the rocket to lift off. Also, for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. Again, the motor exploding against the launch pad causes the rocket to lift off. Who knew science could be so much fun.

We also learn about science in some every day ways. How does the yeast make the bread rise? How does mixing a powder with water turn into jello? What makes the leaves change color? These are all simple ways to learn about science. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy or cost a lot of money. Science is a part of our every day lives.

Tomorrow we are going to see what happens when you mix boric acid with water. We will bend a few pipe cleaners into shapes and hang them in the boric acid solution. In a few days we should be able to see the beautiful crystals appear on the pipe cleaners.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Little Boys and All Things Gross

What is it about little boys and gross things? Well, I guess I should say big boys as well. My husband and my son are watching Dirty Jobs right now. And I’m watching them. It really is a pretty tame show tonight compared to what they usually show. Tonight they are repairing the pin setters in a bowling alley. Whoops I mean bowling lane. I found out that they don’t call them bowling alleys any more. They now are Bowling Lanes which you will find at a Family Fun Center. Like I said, the show tonight is pretty tame. Oh wait a minute, my son is now cracking up. Apparently there are five men hovering around the end of the machine that sets the pins. Mike Rowe, the star of the show, is inside the machine with his back side sticking out towards the faces of the other four men. Apparently his lunch did not agree with him. You can hear certain noises coming from inside the machine and suddenly the four men around the end of the machine are disappearing quite quickly. My son is cracking up at this. Little boys and gross things.

They just showed the previews for the next show. It looks like they will be digging out shark poop and testing the sand under it. Hum. Looks right up their alley. Yep, the dvr is already set to record it.

The two men in my household also love to watch Mythbusters. The wilder the show and the grosser the idea, the better they like it. Actually my son has learned a lot from watching programs like this.

I am depending on my son’s love of all things gross to help with his reading skills. He hates to read. He doesn’t want anything to do with reading. In fact, he hates reading so much that he doesn’t even want me to read to him very often. So I recently bought the Captain Underpants series of books for him. I am hoping that they will be gross enough that he will want to read them.