Friday, June 21, 2013

Fun Friday Fact

Today is the summer solstice - that means we will have the longest day and the shortest night of the year. Solstice has Latin roots and means essentially  sun stands still.

I have already shared with you one of my very favorite summer facts: watermelons are vegetables. They are in the same family as cukes and squash.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Make your own aquarium

In Messy Fingers we made pretend aquariums. This is a good sensory activity and just cool to play with. You can easily turn this into a rainbow activity by making seven aquariums in the colors of the rainbow if you have a larger group or space to keep them.

This project uses some rather surprising, but common,  ingredients. Here is what you will need:


Hair Gel - get clear if you can get it
Craft foam
Food coloring - if your hair gel is clear
Clear packing tape

 First cut out some fish. We picked bright colors that we thought would show through the gel easily and were a bit of a contrast to each other.

Next we filled the bag with gel. This took more gel that we expected. About half a cup or so.

We added enough gel to make the bag fairly plump but no so much we couldn't close it. 

 Then we put in some blue food coloring. We only picked blue since it looked like water. You can leave yours clear or mix two primary colors.

It only took three drops to nicely color the gel. 

We put a white paper behind the gel to show the color. While it didn't take much food coloring to get a nice color, it took us longer than we thought to get it well mixed.

Nicely mixed and the bag had a really good feel. It was a lot of fun to play with the gel just like this. If you wanted to make a rainbow of bags, stop here. This might be really pretty to tape to a window as long as it didn't get too hot.

We tucked the fish in. They had to be really maneuvered to get all the way in the gel. The floated on the top without a good push.

We tucked two fish, but use your imagination. Fish and a shark.... a starfish....a shell....octopus? There are so many possibilities. 

Ta Da! Our new fish aquarium. And this is one way to have fish that your cats won't eat. You can push the fish around from the outside and move the gel with your fingertips. It is quite addicting.

With really young children, I would recommend putting clear packing tape over the top of the bag. Some of the ones we made at the library had a bit of gel on the zipper and that seemed to invite oozing. This one, made at home, was dry and didn't leak.

Have fun exploring Pets!