You can catch us on Channel 12’s Arizona Midday on Monday, April 18th from 12:30-1:30 as we demonstrate the crushing power of air pressure on live television! Every year around Earth Day, my daughter and I try to come up with ways to help protect the environment, with a big focus on the Three R’s, Reduce, Reuse and Recycle! We’ve held Earth Day Parades, toured recycling facilities, and have built a model town for Katie’s toys out of recycled materials! This year, we wanted to spend Earth Day thinking about our atmosphere, and exploring some of the more interactive properties of it. Namely…. air pressure!Read More →

The Giveaway is now closed, congratulations Charise W, Sydney S, and RosaLinda H! Thank you so much for entering and sharing your wonderful stories about exploring the world with your kids! In our house, we have a really great collection of science books, with everything from the Eyewitness books, to various encyclopedias and field guides. The Exploratorium of San Francisco just sent us a copy of their newest book Exploralab to add to our collection and it is fantastic! Not only is it fun to read, but my daughter has adopted it as her own personal science activity book! Whenever she sees it, she flips throughRead More →

Kat and I have been spending quite a lot of time outside lately, examining and collecting rocks. We’re captivated by the glittering greens, deep reds, and dramatic blacks that we see all around us. The type of rock that has most captivated Kat however, is the sparkling white of the Quartz Crystal. When she was 4 years old, she would go on collecting expeditions with her friends, amassing large piles of the white rocks. As she’s grown older, she’s used them to create land art, or line her garden. It came as no surprise to me that when we were contemplating our next week ofRead More →

A couple of weeks ago, Kat and I began our big geology project. We learned a lot about the geological history of Arizona and even took our lessons to the field! While examining the outcrops around us, we talked a lot about the layers of the Earth and plate tectonics. We talked about how layers of the crust may have been thrust upwards as plates moved into each other (uplift) and how some layers would sink under others as they moved lower to the mantle (subduction). However, as I was explaining these concepts to my daughter, I realized that she would have a much easierRead More →

With the annual home school science fair just around the corner, I’ve been finding myself reminiscing over last year, when Kat participated in her very first science fair! We regularly take science classes at the Arizona Science Center and each year they hold a non-competitive home school science fair. We had recently been watching the TED talk given by the 2011 Google Science fair winners and Kat, inspired by the story of grand prize winner Shree Bose, immediately knew what her question would be: Does the color of foods affect whether or not we like them? Kat’s hypothesis was that no, the color of foodsRead More →

Last week I was reading “Surely, You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman!“, a wonderful autobiography of the curious and hilarious Nobel winning physicist Richard Feynman. I was struck by one of his curiosity kicks: he wanted to see how well the human nose could smell. Were our smelling powers stunted in comparison to those of other animals? Could we take a book off the bookshelf and be able to tell if someone has read it simply by smelling it? Could we tell if someone has merely held it in their hands? He found the answer to be YES! I however, was not so sure. Feynman, after all,Read More →

Halloween is the month for all things creepy and it’s a great time for playing with science! There are a lot of great science projects that can carry a Halloween theme, ranging from glow in the dark potions (that you can drink!) to dancing gummy worms. Halloween is a great time to bring out the fun in chemistry, and teach some really interesting concepts at the same time! I wanted to kick off our month of Halloween chemistry with a spooky take on an old idea. The experiment we conducted involved the science of decomposition and preventing the biological processes that cause it. We followed the simpleRead More →

Have you ever rubbed a balloon on your head and watched the hair stand up? Have you ever tried to bend water? Did you know that you can turn on a light without flipping the switch? The secret is in the static. Static Electricity! Electricity is all around us. We can see it as lightning in the sky, and we can use it as we power the many electrical devices in our homes. It is even present in our own bodies as the neurons in our brains fire off electrical impulses, resulting in the messages that cause our muscles to move. Electricity is the physicalRead More →

Sometimes even birthday presents can lead to homeschool adventures… For my birthday this year, my husband bought me an acoustic guitar. I do not yet know how to play the guitar, but I find learning it to be a very fun and rewarding experience. Part of this fun stems from the beautiful sounds that emanate from the strings. Kat and I took turns tightening and loosening the strings as we tuned the guitar, listening to the differences in sound it created. We strummed softly, and pulled hard at the strings, listening to the new sounds we could make. It didn’t take long for these play timesRead More →

We’re going to find the best bubble recipes, and a really easy way to explain surface tension! What better way is there to learn about surface tension and water molecules than by playing with bubbles? Kat and I have been having a lot of fun exploring the different ways that liquids interact with each other, and the reactions that can take place. This time, we decided to explore surface tension by learning about how bubbles work! Even better, we’ve taken our lesson to the park and have invited the other kids to come along and learn with us!Read More →