Sunday, June 26, 2011

Monkeys & Mixology

Science has been such a fun endeavor that I ended up buying out practically the entire section of kits and experiments at the Teacher/Parent store this week. So we are growing Sea Monkeys and have become color mixing experts! Sea Monkeys start off microscopic so it was a challenge for 4 year olds to get the concept that dust like particles are actually alive and swimming. And it took some explaining for them to understand that Sea Monkeys do not have fur or eat bananas. And we will not be bringing them to the Rainforest. Luckily, the Sea Monekys are very low maintenance. You add water, sea monkeys from a packet of dried eggs and on the 5th day you feed them a teeny tiny scoop of powdered food. They eat every 2 days after that. I can handle a pet that requires to eat only every 2 days and takes up just a smidgen of space in its tiny aquarium on our kitchen counter.

Thankfully they have grown a bit so we can see them swimming now without a magnifying glass. It's very exciting!
Color mixing was very cool! Its exactly like mixing Easter egg coloring. You take a tablet of color and put it
in water and then observe the fizzing and dissolving, etc. From there we took drops of each color and mixed them in a special container with 24 different compartments. All kinds of color combos are possible. Then we tried some experiments like mixing the colors in milk and adding soap to see the different reactions. At the end you add crystallizing powder to the colors and they form gel like crystal. The boys were so impressed at all we could do with a few drops of water and some food color. They LOVED seeing new colors form and the crystals were just amazing to them!

Fairly easy activities, but it definitely took some managing. I had to make sure The Princess was asleep first. So we worked during her morning nap. She really loves all that is going on and wants to be a part of everything, but she is so little and knocks everything over and wants to taste all of the experiments, so there ends of being so much mess and crying when she gets involved with activities that are not age appropriate for her. So for Sea Monkey and Color Mixing she napped. It was nice to spend that time alone with the boys and it kept them quiet so she could rest. They like the idea that they get to "big kid" stuff sometimes. When she woke up, she was able to observe the Sea Monkeys with the magnifying glass and she did really well with it! And the boys have been great about including her in their playtime so she doesn't feel left out.

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