Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Slime Recipe

We love slime and all sorts of gooey things like this in our house. At my youngest child's birthday, we made pink glow in the dark slime. That was a big group recipe, but this is adapted for a single serving of slime.

1/2 cup water
1/2 cup white glue
Mix these two well. Slow mixing is best.

1 cup of water
1 tsp of borax- the 20 Mule Team kind
Mix this well.

Add a little bit of the borax mixture to the glue/water solution and stir with a craft stick. Keep adding until slime forms on your stick. 

You can add glow in the dark paint to the glue/water solution but start with just a little paint and add more if you need it. 

How does adding more borax change the slime?

I have found that slime will store for a while in an air tight container. I will develop mold and toss it if it gets dirty. You can always make more!

If you have older children, teach or just a chemistry nerd, here is a good lesson plan on slime that really delves in to the chemistry of polymers- and it has actual chemical formulas!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Fun Friday Fact

Ready for this... Watermelons are vegetables. 


They are in the Curcubitaceae family and are related to cucumbers. 

Thursday, June 21, 2012

5 June Science Ideas

Need some quick ideas for fun summer science with the kids? I usually have a few quick ideas for days that are just too hot to be outside or if summer plans fall through.  Here are some good ones for June:

1. Ice - Make some fun ice cubes in whatever containers you can find around the house. Pull them out and put the kids outside with a couple of challenges like build the tallest tower or have ice cube races by pushing them along the deck or driveway. What shape moves the best?

2. Kites - This is such a fun thing to do with kids, making a kite. Here is an excellent kite to make with minimal supplies. I have done with with kids as young as four and as old as teens. It was a hit with everyone. There are no formal experiments, but you will try flying and then altering your kite as you go. Think of this more as an engineering project.

3. Floaters and sinkers - This is a fun activity on a hot day. With very young children, use a small tub, but with bigger kids, consider using a small pool. Gather some objects and make predictions about what will sink or float. Then test your predictions. Were you right?

Here is a longer explanation.

4. Reversible Change - How long does it take for a freeze pop to turn to liquid?  What if it is in the shade? Can you have a race to see who can keep their ice pop frozen the longest. Once they are all defrosted, how long does it take to refreeze?  Check every 15 minutes. You will be surprised on both ends.

5. Mentos geysers - This is a super fun activity and will have everyone amazed from age two to 92. The idea is that if you put Mentos candies into a 2-lr bottle of diet soda, you will get a geyser. I would recommend trying different kinds of diet soda. When we did this we found that different kinds made a difference in the height of the geyser. Get the tube here tho I was able to get mine at Target at Christmas time.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Bread: Part 2

Making bread with kids is loads of fun and a lot easier than you might think. You can buy your the dough premade and work from there. Goretti's  has great dough and are great supporters of the community here in town so I am extra happy to recommend them. 

I you are wanting to make bread from scratch, here is the recipe I use with kids:
3 cups flour
1 cup warm water
1 packet of yeast or 2 1/4 teaspoons yeast
1 tsp salt

Mix everything together until flour is all incorporated. Kneed the dough at least 10 times. Let rise in an oiled bowl until doubled. Put the bread in a warm place and cover with plastic wrap or a tea towel. This usually takes about an hour. Punch down and kneed again about 10 times. Put in a loaf pan and let rise again until it is looking like bread. This usually takes less than an hour. Bake at 450' for 30 minutes or until crust is lightly brown. Cool before cutting.

We love making bread in our house and have found a number of great recipes. One of my favorite is from this book. We make bread on a weekly basis. 

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Activity: Bread, step 1

 Yeast is a interesting organism to explore with preschoolers. It is dormant or not active until you give it water and something to eat like sugar or honey. Here is a simple activity to explore with your favorite young person.  You will need:

A balloon
A water bottle
Warm water

Put the water, sugar, and yeast in the bottle. It really doesn't matter how much you put in. In this case I used about a teaspoon of yeast or half a packet and three little packets of sugar. Use the rest of the yeast to touch and even to taste. I swirled it to mix and put the balloon on.
 In about two minutes, the balloon was firm, but it took about 20 minutes for it to look like this:

What is happening is that the yeast is converting the sugar to carbon dioxide and that blows up the balloon. It is also what makes bread dough rise. Next we will play with bread...yummo!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Messy Fingers TODAY!

Today we are going to explore bread, yeast and practice making predictions. If you have signed up, get to the Millburylibrary today at 10:30am fo

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Ice in the spring!

This week at the library we played with Ice.  We have played with ice before in the winter. Check out those pictures here.

I would highly recommend trying some of the activities when the weather is warmer. I put water in all sorts of containers and froze them to make funny shaped ice cubes. I had ice cube trays that made heart shapes, tubes and long rectangles. We made towers with ice cubes and they were lots of fun to work with - slippery and cold.

Check back over the week to hear about other season mix ups.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Book of the week: Pop! A book about bubbles

Pop! A book about bubbles by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley is a fantastic book for preschoolers. This has lots of pictures of bubbles and kids blowing bubbles. The text is short and simple. And the best part is at the end, there are recipes for bubbles and some science challenges. How cool!

Totally worth getting from the library for your summer reading.
5/5 stars.

June Schedule!

We have two classes in June:

Ice - June 5
Bread - June 12

Sign up at the library (call today!!) 508 865 1181.

I will be leading two classes over the summer as part of the summer reading program so stay tuned.