Sunday, September 14, 2014

Strata and Shield Volcanoes - Viscosity Activity for Kids

Earth Science Unit Study

Week 28: We tested several liquids to determine which was the most viscous.

The lava in strata volcanoes is very sticky or viscous and over time can plug the opening where magma escapes from the Earth. Strata volcanoes like those of Krakatoa and Mt. Saint Helens are often very explosive and have violent eruptions. In contrast, the lava in shield volcanoes, like those in Hawaii, is runny and flows easily away from the vent.

How the Earth was Made - Krakatoa and Anak Krakatou tells the story of this explosive strata volcano. Located in Indonesia, in 1883, Krakatoa blew itself off the map. Today, its child, Anak Krakatou, grows over 12 feet per year.

Because the lava in Krakatoa was very sticky it formed a plug. Over time, new magma rising to the surface increased the pressure on the plug. Just as Krakatoa blew up in the past, one day in the future, a major eruption of Anak Krakatau is expected.

How the Earth was Made - Hawaii tells a very different story. The Hawaiian Islands were formed from a volcanic hot spot under a tectonic plate. As the plate drifts, the hot spot just punches a new hole where lava flows out. The hot spot annually produces millions of cubic yards of lava which enable the big island to increase in size by over one mile every year.

To demonstrate how lavas flow, but at different rates, we measured the viscosity of several liquids found commonly in the house.

Viscosity Activity for Kids

The viscosity of several liquids was compared by measuring the time required for the liquid to spread over the surface of a plate.

Honey, molasses, shampoo, dish soap, ketchup and milk were tested.

A small amount of the test substance was spooned or poured onto the plate.

The timer was stopped when the liquid quit moving.

All of the liquids were retested after heating them in hot water.

Results - A simple table was created and the times were recorded. Heating all the liquids made them less viscous. Honey was the most viscous liquid and milk was the least.

Jamari's Drum is a fun picture book to read in conjunction with any volcano activity. It tells the story of how Jamari restores order in his African village after the volcano erupts. Perfect for ages 4-10.

The House on the Volcano is a short chapter book to read along with a volcano unit study. Set on a Hawaiian Island, two children disagree over whether Madame Pele is responsible for the volcanic eruption, or whether there is a scientific explanation. Written in the 1960's a few parts would likely be rewritten today.

Mount St. Helens Volcano: Violent Eruption (American Disasters) is a non-fiction book that tells the story of the Mount St. Helens eruption. It gives us a glimpse into what people were doing, how they survived, and how the eruption effected the region. 



* I did not receive any compensation for this recommendation. I'm just a homeschooling mom who has found many products that I like. If you're interested in the products I recommend on this blog I want to make it easy for you to find them. 
** I am an Amazon associate and receive a small portion of the sales on orders made after clicking in from this site, which I promptly spend on homeschooling books and supplies for my children.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Middle Ages Song

We created a song to help remember the events and people of the middle ages.

This is the last post of our Middle Ages Unit Study which lasted 25 weeks. Each week we added another verse to the song which is to the tune of The Farmer and the Dell. Posts detailing the activities and resources used during each week can be found on our History Page. The song is covered by copyright under this blog, but please have fun learning the words for personal use.



Words:

The Roman Empire Fell
Invaders attacked
The Dark Ages began in Europe
in 500 AD

Justinian ruled the east
at Constantinople
Byzantine, Hagia Sophia
it thrived 1000 years

Moors came to Spain
Across the Straits of Gibraltar
New fruits and water technology
Geometric designed mosques

Charlemagne united Europe
He built roads and schools
Converted to Christianity
Crowned by the Pope

Vikings attacked Brittian
Vikings attacked France
They burned and killed and plundered
Then settled in Normandie

Alfred the Great of England
Fought off the Vikings
Hid in the woods, translated texts
And created new coins

William the Conqueror of France
Descended from the Vikings
Fought the Battle of Hastings
And became the English King

Crusades were wars
Over money and religion
Christians took Jerusalem on the Third Crusade
Saladin took it back

Venetians escaped the Huns
Ruled by the Doge
Laid siege to Constantinople
During the Fourth Crusade

Early Christian, Byzantine
Romanesque and Gothic
Renaissance, Baroque, Rococo
Cathedrals of Europe

Manuscripts were books
Written on vellum and parchment
Miniatures, words, boarder decorations
Illuminated with gold

Pan flute, lute and harp
Hurdy gurdy and zither
Maypole dance and egg dance
Celebrating the Middle Ages

King Arthur and his knights
Sat at the round table
They lived in Camelot
Pulled the sword from the stone

Robin Hood stole from the rich
Arnold Winkleried threw himself into battle
William Tell shot an apple off his son's head
Chaucer wrote tales

Boys were pages from seven to fourteen
Squires from fourteen to twenty-one
Then they became knights
And were ready to fight

Tournaments and jousts
Blind-Man's Bluff and marbles
People slept together on beds of hay
Chamber pots dumped in the street

Book of Heurs from the Limbourgs
Triptychs from VanEych
Halos and angels from Angelico
Botticelli painted in the round

Thomas A Becket of Cantebury
Thought the church should be in charge
He quarreled with King Henry II
Murdered and became a Saint

Richard the Lionhart went on crusade
Bad King John was in control
He signed the Megna Carta
Kings had to follow the laws too

Two years of bad weather
Caused widespread famine across Europe
People learned food preservation skills
Hansel and Gretel were born

Edward III of England
Wouldn't pay taxes to the French
So the had a war for 100 years
And Joan of Arc became a Saint

Descendents of King Edward III
Fought for the crown
The War of the Roses lasted 30 years
Then red rose married white

Henrys and Beauforts wore red roses
Edwards and Richards of York work white
The Plantagenet line died out
Henry Tudor ended the war

Johannes Gutenberg of Mainz
Invented the printing press
First Bibles, then science and literature works
Brought the Middle Ages to an end

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Alliteration in Stories - Activity for Kids

We brainstormed alliteration ideas to add to stories we were working on.

When walloping weights of words in a sentence begin with the same sound, that's alliteration. Ok - so maybe my example with w's was a little hokey, but the idea is clear. Each week we sit down together for around one hour at Tuesday tea time which is focused on writing literary elements and poetry. Although I planned this activity, the concept was inspired by Brave Writer.

During this session, after each child shared a random poem, we read two books filled with alliteration. While listening to The Duchess Bakes a Cake by Virginia Kahl, the kids wrote down some of the alliteration in the story;
  • A Duchess a Duke and their family of daughters
  • tired of talk
  • lovely light luscious delectable cake
  • king of their country
  • She pushed it and pummeled it, punched it and pat on it. She poked at it, punched it and finally sat on it.
In addition to the lovely alliteration in the story, we found one example of consonance. (That's when the alliteration happens in the middle of words); improper proportion. Those two words contain four p sounds.

In The Berenstains' B Book almost every word in the story begins with the letter B. This was one of my favorite childhood books and my daughter volunteered to read it.

After learning about alliteration and reading stories that contained alliteration, we spent 15 minutes brainstorming alliteration phrases to add to current stories we are working on. Here are some of the results.

  • lazily lapping up cat milk
  • eating meat
  • Fairy's flowery flowing gown
  • stinky, smelly, socks
  • perfectly plump woodcutter's wife who was swiftly stirring a gigantic pot of pretty peppery stew




* I did not receive any compensation for this recommendation. I'm just a homeschooling mom who has found many products that I like. If you're interested in the products I recommend on this blog I want to make it easy for you to find them. 
** I am an Amazon associate and receive a small portion of the sales on orders made after clicking in from this site, which I promptly spend on homeschooling books and supplies for my children.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Reflection Symmetry Form Drawing

We created reflection symmetry drawings.

The picture book Seeing Symmetry explains symmetry with lots of drawings of cultural art and design. The Waldorf method of education incorporates lots of form drawing. During the early elementary years there is a significant emphasis on symmetry. In this activity a center line was drawn, then a line was sketched on one side of the center line and reflected to the other side.

We began with scrap paper and several lines to be reflected. As we progressed, the kids created figures for me to reflect.

Next a figure was chosen to reflect across a center line to create an artistic finished symmetry picture. Scratch paper was used for practice, then the reflection symmetry was drawn nicely with wax crayon.







* I did not receive any compensation for this recommendation. I'm just a homeschooling mom who has found many products that I like. If you're interested in the products I recommend on this blog I want to make it easy for you to find them. 
** I am an Amazon associate and receive a small portion of the sales on orders made after clicking in from this site, which I promptly spend on homeschooling books and supplies for my children.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Teaching Kids the Basics of Economics

I began reading Life of Fred: Pre-Algebra 2 With Economics with my daughter as part of her math curriculum, but quickly discovered the book is even better for teaching kids the basics of economics.



When the main character Fred discovered he could purchase a case of hot dogs to sell at his hot dog stand for $90 from "Freedonia, a floating island nation in the middle of the Atlantic," he was excited to bring down his prices and increase his profits. His former supplier, Whole Dog, who sold hot dogs for $100/case was less thrilled. The author explained that Whole Dog had three choices for dealing with the problem - lower their prices, use violence, or send lobbyists to the senator. Their strategy of sending lobbyists worked. They provided the senator lots of votes and tuition for his daughter's education, and he passed a law which a tariff of $40/case was levied on hot dogs. The story didn't end there. It continued with discussing who won and lost from the tariff and how decisions affect society as a whole.

Other topics such as how competition, using technology to replace people, and price fixing effects prices and society are discussed.Tulip mania, what materials work well for money, and the rule of 72 (used for predicting how long it will take for sales to double) are covered as well.

This book is filled with examples to explain how economics really works. America was formed around the principals in the constitution and grew to be a great and powerful nation because of capitalism. It's sometimes difficult to understand how decisions made which seem to protect the interests of citizens can actually end up having the opposite effects. This book does a wonderful job of explaining the long term effects of these decisions and I recommend it for middle and high school students studying government, economics or pre-algebra.




* I did not receive any compensation for this recommendation. I'm just a homeschooling mom who has found many products that I like. If you're interested in the products I recommend on this blog I want to make it easy for you to find them. 
** I am an Amazon associate and receive a small portion of the sales on orders made after clicking in from this site, which I promptly spend on homeschooling books and supplies for my children.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Introduction to Volcanoes

Earth Science Unit Study: Introduction to Volcanoes

Week 27: We did a dessert soil boring to determine the make-up of the cake, just like geologists take soil borings to determine the make-up of the ground.

There are four major types of volcanoes; cinder cone, strata, shield, and caldera. Cinder cone volcanoes tend to be small and have only one pipe in which magma flows from underground out to the surface. Strata volcanoes are found throughout the world, but are the primary type which lie on the Pacific Ring of Fire. They are shaped like mountains and extremely explosive because of their sticky lava. Shield volcanoes form over openings in the Earth's crust and tend to have runny lava that flows for long distances. Because the lava is runny, shield volcanoes tend to be much flatter than strata volcanoes. The Hawaiian and Icelandic volcanoes are shield volcanoes. Caldera are huge regions which contain geothermic underground activity. They are formed when land collapses into the underground magma chamber after a volcanic eruption. Yellowstone is a caldera.

To learn more about volcanoes we watched several videos and read lots of books. Here are our favorites.

Volcanoes 101: This 3 minute National Geographic video is a nice introduction to volcanoes.

How the Earth was Made; Ring of Fire

How the Earth was Made; San Andreas Fault

This 4 minute video explains the types of rocks produced by volcanic eruptions.

The Magic School Bus Blows Its Top: A Book About Volcanoes (Magic School Bus)
Hill Of Fire (I Can Read, Book 3)

Cake Soil Boring

Geologists and construction companies often perform a procedure known as soil boring, to determine what lies underground. The process results in cylindrical-shaped tubes of ground in which the underground layers are visible. By analyzing the layers, scientists can determine the history of the area where the boring was taken. The layers can indicate events such as flood, drought, and volcanic activity.

Our soil borings were done with cheesecake and straws.

The cake was wrapped inside aluminum foil so the kids could not see what was inside.

Straws were stuck into the cake thereby filling with underground surface layers.

The borings were blown out of the straws onto a plate where the layers were clearly visible. The kids made up stories to go with the layers in the cake.....

...... and then were happy to take care of the mess.

Stay tuned for more hands-on volcano science.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Middle Ages - Books

We read many wonderful books about the middle ages during our unit study.

In our favorite books we learn while being entertained with stories. Historical fiction has so much to offer. Here are some great books covering the middle ages.

Overview
  • Story of the Middle Ages by Samuel B Harding, free on Librivox, covers the history of the middle ages in Europe. The various groups which moved into Europe are explained.
  • Heros of the Middle Ages by Eva March Tappan is a story free on Librivox. It tells stories of the lives of many people from the middle ages such as Clovis, Charlemagne, Alfred the Great and William the conqueror.
  • When Knights were Bold, also by Eva March Tappan and free on Librivox tells what life was like during the middle ages. From tournaments to education and how to capture a castle; this book paints a good visual picture of medieval life.




Life in the Middle Ages - Picture Books - Great for younger children
  • The Minstrel and the Dragon Pup by Rosemary Sutcliff tells the story of a minstrel who adopts a dragon. When the dragon is stolen he travels throughout the land searching for him. A fun story for children ages 5-12.
  • Castle Diary: The Journal of Tobias Burgess by Richard Platt follows the journey of a young boy sent to live with his uncle as a page in his castle. This picture book is great for children ages 6-12.
  • The Middle Ages (Journey Through History) - This short picture book gives a brief introduction to middle age history in Europe.
  • Ms. Frizzle's Adventures: Medieval Castle - On the Magic School Bus, the kids in Ms. Frizzle's class journey to a middle ages castle and learn how castles were built, what life was like and how to deal with a siege.
  • Adventures in the Middle Ages (Good Times Travel Agency) by Linda Baily and Bill Slavin - When a modern family visit a time travel agency and head back to the middle ages, they learn what life really was like. The experience sleeping together on beds of straw, bugs, peasant and castle life. This is a great book for kids ages 5-10.



Life in the Middle Ages - Historical Fiction - Chapter Books


Minstrels - Adam of the Road (Puffin Modern Classics) by Robert Lawson - When Adam's dog is stolen, he tracks the thief throughout the country playing and entertaining as he goes.
Knights and Castles - Castle by David Macaulay - The book provides details into how medieval castles were constructed using a fun story format.
Printing - Breaking into Print: Before and After the Printing Press - The invention of the printing press marked the end of the middle ages. This book tells Gutenberg's story.



Religion



Legends



Moors


Venice
  • The Lion of St. Mark by GA Henty - A young boy from England has many adventures in Venice. He becomes a hero after saving a wealthy merchant's daughter from being kidnapped and goes on to perform many more heroic deeds.
  • Daughter of Venice by Donna Jo Napoli - A merchant's daughter does everything in her power to escape the life planned for her and have her own adventures.
  • Marco Polo by Demi
  • Animals Marco Polo Saw (Explorer Series) by Sandra Markle - This story puts a different perspective on the travels of Marco Polo which is very enjoyable for children.


Normans (Battle of Hastings)



Art




* I did not receive any compensation for this recommendation. I'm just a homeschooling mom who has found many products that I like. If you're interested in the products I recommend on this blog I want to make it easy for you to find them. 
** I am an Amazon associate and receive a small portion of the sales on orders made after clicking in from this site, which I promptly spend on homeschooling books and supplies for my children.  
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...