We really have enjoyed participating in the events at Science Oxford over the past year, and tonight was no exception! We went to see An ABC of the Earth tonight and all really enjoyed ourselves. The staff put together a demonstration to explain how the Earth’s surface was created, and what was probably in the centre of the Earth. What I hadn’t realized was that it was going to be interactive—so left the camera at home!
The first surprise of the evening was bumping into a Home Educated girl we have met on occasion. They live on the opposite side of the city than we do, so we rarely get to see each other. Needless to say-the kids wanted to sit near S & her dad, and they played for a bit afterwards. But anyway—back to the interactive bits! The 1st thing they had us do was put stickers on a large map as to where volcanoes & earthquakes had occurred. Funnily enough, and truly by coincidence and because of the earthquake in Haiti, the kids and I have been covering this topic at home for the 2 weeks prior to the visit! So I was quite pleased that the only help either needed was Bangladesh for Hazel & Kieran wasn’t too sure on Turkey, but they got a couple of others all on their own.
They also did a hot and cold experiment—which was basically giving everyone a curly wurly chocolate bar, luckily our group got the cold ones! It was just to show what would happen if the earth was frozen or warm, and how it would either crack or bend. My two took a bite or two of the chocolate, and then the rest of their bars went in the bin—they’d never had so much chocolate given to them, and I was quite happy neither wanted to finish it! (OK—Michael scoffed his in seconds, but they are one of his favourites!)
The last experiment was about the Earths mantle convection. They put food colouring in cold water, and then we placed in four pieces of Styrofoam. Then we put a cup of warm water under the container, and the ‘land masses’ all started to move. And then we put magnets on it—and they all faced north. Simple experiments, but fun. I think they had a great mix for the night, as all the children were interested and not left floundering trying to keep up with the presentation, and all of the adults, even Michael, learned a few things!