There’s a few odd things on my shopping list this week…

My children are mad scientists! This when’s SciFri, we are going to brew up some new recipes. There are some great recipes here – give it a try!


Chemistry Follow-up

I have realised I haven’t written about how we follow-up on the science curriculum.

Last week we looked at chemistry, and LE seemed really taken with the periodic table.  (This link is now fixed.)   We printed it off, laminated it, and placed it where he sits at the table. We ended up having to do another one for A, it was so popular. Now mealtimes are often spent in a discussion where LE points to an element and we pronounce it, discuss what it is for and what the element is like in its pure state. (Don’t worry, it’s all on the periodic table!) We have also talked about chemical bonding and common compounds.  I have been really enjoying this because I am learning so much! I was not the chemist in our family 🙂 .

I also went to the library catalogue online and ordered some books for LE. We are still waiting for these to come in, but they include How to Make a Universe from 92 Ingredients and Sorting the Elements, as well as some books on famous chemists and the elements they discovered. I always borrow more books than we are likely to read because I’m not always able to predict exactly what will take the boys’ interest.

Chemistry on SciFri

Chemistry is fun!

While LE has been into physics and biology, this was our first ‘official’ foray into chemistry. I have talked about the science we do in this post.

Today’s activity was to find and discuss the states of matter: solid, liquid, gas, and plasma. (In case you were wondering, plasma can be shown in a plasma ball or a fluorescent light bulb. The glowing is actually caused by glowing plasma. In nature it is seen as lightning and the stars/sun.) DH also talked about Bose-Einstein Condensate. (JGI!) We filled balloons (solid) with water (liquid) and gas (air).

We also wrote these words up on card and put them on the wall. This is new for us, but something I have been trying to do more often as both a vocabulary building and reading practice exercise. It’s also something LE enjoys, as he loves to go to the wall later and ask questions about the words.

The experiment was to explore the weight of  eight different but similarly sized items, introducing concepts of density.

But the hit of the day was the periodic table videos! I showed him a periodic table, then let him loose on this site. I love this site for visual spacial learners! It features a periodic table, and each element is linked to a short video about it. The videos are well done. Each is very different and might contain experiments, stories about the discovery of the element and how it is used in real world applications or in the human body. The presenter has a sense of humour a lot like mine.  (Is that good or bad?)

I wouldn’t say LE got everything in those videos, but enough to really enjoy them, and for me to have a hard time getting my computer back!