Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Volcanic Egg Dying

     If we're decorating eggs with vinegar and baking soda is it science or is it art?  I guess it's both!  My boys are the kinds of boys who never tire with playing with baking soda and vinegar and watching different ways we can set off this reaction so I knew volcanic egg dying was perfect for us!  I stumbled upon a few blogs (and a variety of different ways) that carried out this experiment.  We decided to set out small bowls of baking soda paint (I mixed baking soda, concentrated liquid food dye-- ours came in an egg decorating kit that we never ended up using, and just a hint of water).  I only added enough water to make our colored baking soda mixture spreadable and then set out a few brushes for each kid to use with each color.  I also kept the spoon/fork I used to mix the colors with in case the baking soda started to settle to the bottom of the paint ( and it did).  I then set out one slightly larger bowl with white vinegar and some medicine droppers.  I gave each boy a disposable tin tray (though can I really call them disposable if we've never gotten rid of any of them?  We use them ALL the time for tons of science experiments!).  They each put their egg in their tray, painted on one or two or all of the colors of baking soda paint until they had their egg the way they liked it.  They even experimented with dripping a few drops of straight food coloring onto the egg.  Once they were ready they'd suck up a bunch of vinegar and start squirting the egg.  We'd see it fizz, bubble and wash part of the color away.  Some colors mixed very unexpectedly; like when Ian mixed our bright pink with the dark teal green color to get an army green color that turned purple when reacting with the vinegar.  They must have spent close to an hour decorating eggs and they had so much fun trying to make tie-dyed looking eggs, striped eggs, speckled eggs and more. 
Painting the eggs

adding vinegar

watching it bubble and fizz

fun for all ages

making patterns

hard at work

our finished eggs-- aren't they bright and colorful?!

   When all the boys were done with all the paint and vinegar we set them in the sink and set off one gigantic colorful eruption. 

   Once science/ art was done we went onto other subjects.  Evan and I found some pictures of food from Madagascar to add to his report and he once again spent his language arts time writing.  He copied my labels perfectly and we were thrilled to declare the board "Done!"  The older boys decided to spend quiet time in their rooms quietly reading.  I know they were really reading too because Ian was dying to finish his latest book.  I had to go into his room at 9o'clock last night and tell him to turn his lights off.  He begged me to let him finish reading his book instead.  We compromised and he finished the page/ chapter that he was on and then turned the lights out.  Alec is on his third or fourth chapter book from yesterday's trip to the library and he's been telling me all about them. 
     The older boys worked on their math minute (which they both had to do orally this morning since my printer/copier is completely out of ink and I'm just getting blank pages spitting out.  Alec came pretty close to finishing his 6 times tables but Ian is really struggling with his 12 times tables.  I figured he knew most of them since they've shown up on every other multiplication table but I guess over time he's forgotten them.  They then each worked in their math workbooks today.  Ian decided to just stick with one page and found a page on the three times tables.  He had to time himself while answering all 60 problems.  He seemed disappointed in himself that it took him 5 minutes to complete them all but I tried to steer his focus to the fact that he got every single one right without making any mistakes.  Alec did another 6 pages in his book so he could have a week off and decided he wanted to try working from the back of the book to the front.  I sat with him since most of the pages were new concepts and he needed me to explain the instructions.  He compared the cubic volume of different shapes, subtracted and reduced fractions, compared areas of shapes, completed a page on reading both bar graphs and pictographs, filled in a graph on addition fact families, and drew lines of symmetry for various shapes.  If I hadn't seen him working so hard and stumbling a bit on reducing fractions I would have sworn I made a mistake in getting him a third grade book.  I really think it's still not all that challenging for him!  But he worked hard and felt like he needed a break when he was done.  Since it was lunch time, I agreed!
    I was feeling kind of bad that I hadn't read, worked on sight words, or even worked on math with Evan when he started doing math all on his own.  We were eating and he started asking/ telling me "2-2; that's 1?"  So I'd go to hand him two crackers and tell him to take away two and gobble them up.  He smiled and said "zero!"  He then spent the next few minutes making up a bunch of subtraction problems; most of them using the same number.  He asked Ian what 100- 100 was and when Ian answered zero, Evan nodded his head.  I then asked Evan what 50-50 was and with a great big grin on his face he told me "easy, that's zero!"  Inwardly I shrugged and thought "OK, we'll do self- guided math again today!" 

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