Friday, July 15, 2011

Mad Science

Every summer our library puts on a summer reading program. This year they changed it a bit and I am excited to work on it with both boys. Instead of just reading and then listing books in 20 minute increments they have created a game board. I haven't gotten a glimpse at the over five year old game board (bummer) but  the one for my kiddos is pretty exciting. One side of a paper is a game board for 3-5 year olds and the flip side is for 0-3 year olds. Each game board has approximately 20-25 items and you have all month to complete it. Next month it will be different game board. Items on the 3-5 year old game board: practice buttoning and tying, play a game with your child, have your child read you a story by looking at the pictures, groups things by size and color, and go for a walk and look for different types of transportation. On the game board for the 0-3 year olds: share a nursery rhyme, do a fingerplay, talk to your child about the clouds and their shapes, and wear red and help your child find other things that are red. Downside: there are quite a few items on the 0-3 side that is impossible for a baby to do. When game board is filled in the child gets a small prize and entered into a drawing for a family membership at our local zoo or children's museum.

Older pic, but I love "A" looking at Daddy's book and trying to be a reader.

What does this have to do with Mad Science you ask? Well, part of the summer reading program is once a week they do a free event for children. This week was Mad Science. I am familiar with the Mad Science  program because it is offered every year to my students at school. I have never actually seen Mad Science in action though. It was a hoot. Our presenter (Madam Chaos) was from England and had the most animated voice and facial expressions. You couldn't help but be drawn in. She started off the show with doing a magic trick with a playing card. "A" especially loved this because he has decided to put on magic shows himself recently. Then she continued with science experiments like getting the egg into the beaker and out, filling huge bags with a single breath of air, balancing balls on rushing air, and lots of fun stuff with dry ice. "A" was transfixed!!! Madam Chaos used all sorts of big vocabulary (which I loved because she offered lots of context clues and trusted the children to be able to follower her-they did). I think "A" thought all of it was magic though. I love the idea of him seeing science in fun and exciting ways...even if he couldn't understand and explain all of it. Knowing "A" he will tell me a science fact he learned weeks from now that he remembered and completely blow me away...he's sneaking like that.

Highlights from the show:
Madam Chaos balancing balls with a hair dryer
Soda Science
Dry-Ice Shower with Soap Bubbles
"A"playing with the fog created by Dry-Ice

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