April 22

Water and Air

The magical refilling bottle demonstrates the power of air pressure. To see it in action, click here.

In another demonstration of air pressure, I punctured a hole in a water bottle and when I opened the cap, water came out of the hole, but when the cap was closed, the water stopped flowing from the hole. Why?

I tried to blow up a balloon inside a bottle but was unsuccessful. However, when I removed my finger from the hole in the side of the bottle, I was able to blow up the balloon successfully. It was all about air pressure again. Then my first grade scientists tried to blow up balloons with and without their fingers over the holes. For more information, click here.

Whew, we weren’t finished yet! I held up a cup and asked what was in it? I explained that air is everywhere, so a cup is never empty. I plunged the cup directly into a tank of water and then when I turned it sideways, we watched the air escape. I glued tissues into the top of various sizes of paper cups. I plunged them directly down into the water and when I lifted them straight up, the tissues were still dry. Why? Finally, I placed a piece of cardstock over a mason jar filled with water. When I flipped the jar over, the paper kept the water from spilling out. Air pressure pushing up on the paper kept it in place. But wait, I repeated the process, but this time, I removed the paper. Why didn’t the water fall out? I revealed that I had placed a screen in the lid of the jar which again demonstrated the concept of cohesion and adhesion.
Click here to learn more.


Many of these investigations you can repeat at home. Have fun!

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April 22

Snails

The invertebrate labs in second grade are always favorites! Snails are one of my favorite animals, although I don’t like to see them in my garden! A snail is basically a shell and a flat foot. The shell is attached and grows with the snail. The snail’s eyes are on top of tentacles. Smaller tentacles are used for smelling and feeling. Snails produce slime to help them move easily. A snail is oviparous and lays eggs in soil. They are nocturnal and do not like hot or dry weather. Click here for information about snails.

I collected some snails from my yard and my biologists observed them. Click here for a fun snail video.



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April 22

Stars

Kindergarten astronomers learned that a star is a glowing ball of hot gases. Stars are different sizes and colors. The sun is a medium sized yellow star and appears larger than other stars because it is closer.

Click here to learn more about stars.

Stars twinkle because the light they produce is refracted as it travels through the atmosphere.
Click here to sing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. We demonstrated how stars twinkle in the demonstration below:


There are 66 constellations in the sky. Constellations are groups of stars that form a picture. We looked at some familiar constellations and then made constellation cups. Click here to learn more about constellations.



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