Scientist Bob McDonald in Victoria, BC, November 22nd

Bob McDonald Quirks and Quarks wiki Nov 14From mad scientists, to lunar landings, to outrageous weapons, science is gracing the big screen. But just what’s plausible, capable, or already happening?

Join one of Canada’s best-known science journalists on November 22nd when the host of CBC’s Quirks & Quarks….http://thevic.ca/item/quirks-and-quarks

For more info about Bob McDonald’s CBC Radio show, visit here: http://www.cbc.ca/quirks/host/.  Bob’s Book is entitled:

 Measuring the Earth with a Stick: Science as I’ve seen it:

http://www.kidsbooks.ca/The-Quirks-&-Quarks-Guide-to-Space/Product.aspx?ProductID=121009&DeptID=0

http://www.cbc.ca/quirks/books/

Quirks N QuarksHis book, which was short-listed for the Canadian Science Writers Association Book Award, is a collection of essays reflecting on his 25 years as a science journalist.  Bob also hosted and wrote a children’s TV science series, Heads Up!, which ran for 3 seasons on TVO and the Knowledge Network. In addition, he is Chairman of the Board for Geospace Planetarium.  Here is Bob’s Science Blog:  http://www.cbc.ca/quirks/host/

For info on Our Awesome Science Learning Lesson Plans, Games and Activities, feel free to visit here:

http://www.science-lessons.ca/lesson-plans/index.html

http://www.science-lessons.ca/games/brain.html

www.butterflybooks.ca

End of Summer Oceans Quiz

French Angelfish PairSince everyone has either had fun by the ocean side this summer, or still dreaming about being by the Ocean side, here is a Fun End of Summer Teaching Oceans Pop Quiz, to keep the Brain Fresh for the upcoming classes in the Fall!

1. Sea Turtles live in all the world’s oceans except the ____________.

2. Adult Turtles swim in shallow lagoons, feeding mostly on various species of ______________.

3. Clownfish are native to the warm waters of the ___________ and __________ Oceans.

4. _________ have two stomachs and therefore can hunt for larger animals than their mouth could otherwise handle.

5. Angelfish are ____________ animals, because they hide amongst the crevices of the reef by night.

6. Through the 19th century, the word “kelp” was closely associated with seaweeds that were fired to obtain __________ (primarily sodium carbonate).

7. Manatees use taste and smell, in addition to sight, sound, and touch, to_________.

8. Salmon eggs usually range from _____________ in color.

9. Clownfish are one of the few fish that are safe from sea ______________.

10. The ___________ is a marine mammal, the heaviest member of the weasel family.

11. When eating, the otter first uses ___________ to dislodge prey and to open shells.

12. Seahorses have an equine profile, meaning they look sort of like ________.

13. ____________ have vibrant rainbow colors and deep, sideway-flat bodies.

14. Before spawning, salmon may grow a hump and grow canine teeth like a dog, developing a_______, a curve in the jaws.

15. Like___________ , anemones have stinging cells.

16. When a shark is resting, it does not use its nostrils, but rather, its___________, tiny holes behind each eye.

17. A _________tail is paddle-shaped.

18. ________ are large seaweeds belonging to the brown algae family.

19. _________ are pink and silver fish from the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, and the Great Lakes.

20. Although corals can catch small fish and animals, they obtain most of their nutrients from photosynthetic unicellular_______.

21. __________ typically have five “arms” which radiate from a central disk.

22. __________ are slow-moving and live in warm, shallow, coastal waters, surviving above 15°C.

23. ____   ________ are related closely to coral and jellyfish.

24. _________ have proven problem-solving skills, social complexity and curiosity.

25. Coral have______ ; each one being like a tiny upside-down jellyfish with a shell.

26. ____ _______ “bob” around in sheltered areas such as sea grass beds, coral reefs, or mangroves.

QUIZ ANSWERS:

Angelfish

1. Arctic Ocean

2. Seagrass

3. Indian and Pacific

4. Sea Stars

5. Diurnal

6. soda ash

7. communicate

8. orange to red

9. Anemonae

10. sea otter

11. rocks

12. horses

13. Angelfish

14. Kype

15. Spiracles

16. jellyfish

17. manatee

18. Kelp

19. Salmon

20. algae

21. Starfish

22. Manatees

23. Sea Anenomae

24. Sharks

25. Polyps

26. Seahorses

If you really want to give yourselves an elementary science Brain-Squeeze this summer, here is an Oceans Quiz from National Geographics: http://ocean.nationalgeographic.com/ocean/ocean-extremes-quiz/

Ocn Scnce TpT VersionAnd Here is one from our classroom at Science-Lessons.ca: a 52-Card Playing Deck for Ocean Learning, includes 4 several games and completely downloadable for Print and Cut-out – Crazy Starfish! Go Snorkeling! Sea Cluster! and ?Hypothesy?: Ordering:  Ocean Science: Ocean Creatures Playing Cards

Also, an updated and more improved version with Teachers Pay Teachers!

Septarian Nodules in The Earth’s Crust

Moeraki Boulders SunriseThis month’s Science focus is about a most interesting phenomena called a Spheroidal Concretion, and the special “animal” (though not an animal – or was it at one time?) is called a Septarian Nodule.  In their raw found forms, one might think that they are eggs, with a living creature inside awaiting to hatch – or that maybe they are sediment space shuttles that came from outer space.  Because of their interesting looks, they are also known as Dragon Eggs.  They formed during the Cretaceous period, about 50-70 million years ago.  Many of these facts, we learned this weekend from a rock show organized by the Victoria Lapidiary Society.  Helpful participants were Fossil Grotto from Duncan, BC, and Stone Haven Gems.  We learned a lot!

Concretions are rounded rocks embedded in layers of stone in sedimentary rocks, often they are harder than the surrounding stone, and whether out of the host rock; http://www.rocksforkids.com/R&M/concretions.html#Septarian_Nodules.  They are a hard mass of sedimentary rocked compacted tightly at one time, by way of the precipitation of mineral cement, that has grown spaces between the sediment grains – outward in 7 directions.  The sedimentary rock nodules are kind of mineralized calcified encased “mud”, made up of calcite and ironstone.  There are 2 basic stages of development that are shown in the photos here:(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Concretion; Moeraki Boulders; Septarian Nodule; photos drawn March 17, 2014 ) caused by networks of cracks in which the minerals, usually calcite (CaCo3 – Calcium Carbonite – in the Periodic Table, Calcium, Carbon and Oxygen) been deposited into the solution before hardening.  Prior to the depositing of minerals, the cavities are filled with ironstone; (Melody, EARTH-LOVE Publishing House; Love is In The Earth – Kaleidoscope pictorial, 1998; pp. 282-283).

Septarian NoduleOn a metaphysical level, these beauties are said to filter dreams and keep only good ones around a person, such as is with dream catchers, and thus good to keep near a sleep space.   Also used to facilitate neuro-linguistic programming, instilling patience, endurance and tolerance to a person; freedom of body movement supporting the body’s self-healing abilities.  (Melody; 1998). Melody, a most fantastic source in the world of minerals and crystals, says it can be placed in the centre of Medicine Circles, facilitating Connection and Harmony.

Questions to ask Learners in your Classroom:  What causes minerals to migrate to a centre and become harder?  What are their true origins?  Can you find septarian nodules in your backyard?  Or are they only in one part area of the Earth?

For Fun Learning and Teaching activities and games, feel free to visit here:

http://www.science-lessons.ca/games/mammals.html

http://www.science-lessons.ca/games/space.html

http://www.science-lessons.ca/games/weather8.htm

http://www.literature-enrichment.com/

Interesting links from the Victoria Lapidiary Rock Show we visited:

Victoria Lapidiary and Mineral Society: http://www.islandnet.com/~vlms/.

Fossil Grotto: http://www.caves.org/grotto/ccg/um/2012_03_um.pdf.

Stone Haven Gems: http://www.stonehavengems.com/septarian-nodule-pebble/.

 

 

 

 

 

Making Your own Orgonite Generator

Crystal Blue MSCLArtFirst, a bit about What is Orgone?  And What is an Orgonite Generator?  Orgone energy is a hypothetical universal life force that was first known coined by a 1930’s scientist named Wilhelm Reich.  An Orgonite Generator is a homemade device using a container of inorganic and organic materials, that is designed to turn negative energy into positive uplifting energy, in general.  http://www.orgonite.info/what-is-orgonite.html.   Reich was experimenting with collecting different forms of energy to make positive generators.  In its final conception, developed by Reich’s student Charles Kelly after Reich, Orgone was conceived as the anti-entropic principle of the universe, a creative substratum in all of nature comparable to Mesmer’s animal magnetism. Orgone is regarded by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine as a type of “putative energy. There is no empirical support for the concept of orgone in medicine or the physical sciences, and research into the concept ceased with the end of the Institute.  www.orgonite.info  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orgone.  Though it is notable, however, that famous scientists such as Galileo, Hypathia, Tesla and  Pythagoras, but to name a few, were also refuted as having no empirical support – including all those who first claimed the Earth to be round and not flat!

Making your own Orgonite Muffins are Easy to Make at in-class or at home, Materials needed are:

Beezwax or EcoEpoxy Resin

Large Stir Spoon

Small crystals, even the smallest is great

2 kinds of scrap metals such as copper shavings (look around in your Mom and Dad’s garage or ask your teacher or local welder for some scraps)

a bit of paper and tape

Muffin Pan

For more instructions, visit here:  http://beeswax-orgone.com/make-an-orgone/; and here:  http://www.orgonite.info/how-to-make-orgonite-hhgs.html.

Orgonite Generators are said to turn negative energy into positive energy, purify the atmosphere, detoxify water, ends drought, help plants grow better, repel pests, require less water, Inspire a pleasant demeanor and balanced, happier moods, and help awaken your innate senses.  We first made one with paper and a bit of goldleaf, our compass, ruler and marker – drawing on the paper, a geometric flower of life, adding positive words.  We felt it generating positive energy and so thought it was an orgonite generator.  To truly test our generator we would have to first make a blank one with the gold, one with the flower of life, one with tiny words on it, and one without, and test each one in the garden to see if it attracts life, or if the flowers around it perk up!  Then, to document all of that!  But then, we read that Reich’s devices were said to “generate” only when in a container.  Otherwise they only “accumulated” the energy – hence, we believe what we made is an orgone accumulator (adding together inorganic and organic materials). Besides not being contained in a container with beeswax or EcoEpoxy, ours only had one kind of metal, and had no crystals.  So our next step is to make the Eco-Epoxy muffins!

Wilhelm Reich CloudbusterHere is a photo of one of Reich’s generators designed to do cloudbusting and make rainfall.  (Photo: Extracted January 28, 2014 from: www. Wikipedia. Org / wiki / orgone.)  People who make homemade orgonite generators have we believe, good intentions – putting positive feelings into our environments.  Though, unfortunately, most generators have been made with epoxy fiberglass resin, that is reportedly not very good at all for the environment, in general.  Thus, our personal concern is whether crystals “like” being encapsulated in epoxy (as it is also apparent that crystals are living and have feelings!  Our sense is they would not like being encapsulated in a non-eco-friendly substance.  So…..we searched and found alternatives that are earth-friendly.  3 Eco-alternatives:

1. Beeswax.  Yellow Gold in color. http://beeswax-orgone.com/make-an-orgone/.

2. EcoEpoxy.  Clear in color and others.  http://www.earthsafefinishes.com/EcoEpoxy.html.

3. Ecopoxy.   Amber in color. http://ecopoxysystemscanada.com/.

http://www.westwindhardwood.com/products/ecopoxy/intro.php.

Our friend who makes generators at home, says, if you are wondering if an orgone device works or not try testing it on something that can re-act to your orgone device like a plant or lizard or other animal.  Testing may take minutes, hours, days or a week for optimal results.  Try taking digital pictures of the subject being tested to document it.  He says his generators makes his plants grow faster and greener and attracts interesting wildlife like frogs and lizards.  He also writes words on his like Love Peace Harmony Compassion Forgiveness Happiness and Oneness.

And we like this person’s Kirlian photos (infrared photo-technology), also forwarded to us by our friend Kevin.  Way cool.  🙂  http://www.orgoniseafrica.com/blog/improving-orgonite.  Are we, as human beings, orgonite generator? If we have contained within our bodies, more than one metal, organic and inorganic material, would we not also orgonite generators?  We would say yes, to an extent, though we do not contain non-carbon based crystals.  Crystals, are a different kind of life form on Planet Earth.    What about if wear a crystal, then?  Hmmmmm.  Good Science Questions.  Be sure and clean and care for your crystal, if you choose to wear one.  We believe Crystals have Feelings too!

Other sources of information on Orgone Generators:

For more interesting and Fun Science Activities and Games, feel Free to visit:

http://www.science-lessons.ca/games/weather3.html

http://www.science-lessons.ca/games/brain.html

http://www.science-lessons.ca/games/space.html

http://www.science-lessons.ca/games/ocean.html

 

How Do Boats Float?

A boat is able to float based on the amount of water it displaces or moves out of the way. When a boat pushes against the water, the water pushes back with an equal amount of force. Therefore, a wider boat is able to carry a heavier load than a long, narrow boat. Wider boats displace more water and therefore are held up by a greater water force, enabling them to carry heavier loads.

In this activity students will experiment with how much weight a boat can hold depending on the size of the boat.

Materials:

Large pan with water
Toy boats (various sizes)
Pennies (or other coins)

Instructions:

  1. Place the boat in the water. Allow students to interact with the boat, seeing that it floats when placed in the water.
  2. Add pennies to the boat, counting how many are added before the boat sinks.
  3. Repeat this with each type of boat and compare how the boats differ in size, shape, and the amount of pennies they can hold.

Discussion Questions to Ask:

  • What did the boats do when placed in the water?
  • How many pennies do you think each boat can hold? Which boat held more pennies?
  • If you had to make a boat to carry a heavy load, what shape and size boat would you make?

When teaching concepts related to density, it is best practice to allow students to experiment with different shapes and sizes of objects. Encourage students to explore how long objects can float before sinking, or how long it takes an object to sink when placed in the water. Finding ways to connect the activity to the students’ current interests is a great way to keep young students especially interested in the topic. Additionally, finding ways that this activity relates to the real-world is a great way to extend the science learning beyond the classroom. Looking at how large ships carry cargo, or how small ships can zip through the water very quickly, are easy ways to show how this lesson of buoyancy is applied in everyday life. For more fun buoyancy teaching tips, visit: http://bit.ly/ZrmMgg

For Our Fun Learning Games about other great science activities, you can visit here!

http://www.science-lessons.ca/games/mammals.html

http://www.science-lessons.ca/games/space.html

http://www.science-lessons.ca/games/weather8.htm

 

Plant a Butterfly Garden! And 4 Free Guides and Lesson Plans!

Planting a Butterfly Garden is a Gift Free to All Ages from National Geographic IMAX!  The following is the 1st Free Download (see bottom of of this article).  Following this are 3 others including: Grade 7-12 Learning Guide; Flight of The Butterflies (79 pp); And, also in Spanish!  See Below!

Objective: Students will plan and plant a garden in their schoolyard.

Background: Planning and planting a butterfly garden is a positive action that your students can take to help provide monarchs and other insects with resources they need to survive.  In addition, they will work together on a long-term project, planning where and when to plant their garden, deciding what equipment and supplies they will need and actually planting seeds or seedlings.  Since butterfly gardening is becoming more and more popular, you may be able to visit an existing garden with your students to get ideas.  Other resources include our references, garden supply stores and conservation and gardening organizations.  Many schools work with a Master Gardener in their area in planning and caring for a school butterfly garden.

In this lesson, we include suggestions for creating a school garden.  Many of the ideas and information come from an article by Jennifer Goodwin Smith in the January 1995 issue of Science and Children (p. 29-32).  She planned and planted a school butterfly garden with sixth and seventh graders in Maryland and wrote the article to make it easier for others to do similar projects.

National Geographic IMAX  Flight of The Butterflies Trailer: http://www.imaxvictoria.com/trailers/index.cfm?trailerURL=http://destinationcinema.net/tcvideo/FOTBTrailer.flv.

Key Concepts:

• Gardens provide a habitat for many organisms.

• Humans can help preserve and cre-ate habitats for organisms.

• Seeds have various requirements for germination.

• Garden plants are either annuals or perennials.

Skills:

• Read for information

• Create representative drawings and symbols

• Use a scale measurement ratio

• Use a scale drawing to plant and identify flowers in a garden

Materials:

• Graph paper for planning garden layout

• Seed catalogs, gardening magazines, butterfly guides, books on butterfly gardens

• Seeds or seedlings

• Gardening supplies (soil, fertilizer, shovels, rake, hoe)

• Containers in which to start seeds (yogurt containers, egg cartons, nursery flats)

Step 1: Planning to Plant

1. Get permission from school administration and maintenance personnel.  It is especially important to gain the support of the people who maintain the grounds.

2. Discuss how butterflies and other insects use plants, and how they need special plants at different times in their life cycle.

3. Discuss the work involved in a garden, including maintaining the garden during the summer and raising money for seeds and other materials.  Also brainstorm benefits of a garden (such as decreased noise and air pollution from reduced mowing, reduced soil erosion, a beautiful garden, food and shelter for many organisms).

4. Develop a timeline for the garden. If you start from seed, you will need at least three months.  A good timeline is:

•           First month: get administrative support, choose a site, hold fund-raisers if necessary, order seeds, germinate seeds.

•           Second month: monitor seedling growth, design the garden.

•           Third month: prepare garden site, transplant seedlings.

5. Decide on the criteria you will use to judge a site.  Important considerations include available sunlight, level of foot traffic, visibility to school and community and vulnerability to vandalism.

Step 2: Planning the Garden

1. Choose the plants that you will use.  Sources of information include seed catalogs, gardening magazines, books about butterflies and butterfly gardening, and other resources.

2. Encourage students to choose plants that bloom at different times.  Perennials are good since they only have to be planted once, but including an area for annuals will allow future classes to participate in planting each year.  Also consider plant height, color and length of blooming time.

3. Make suggestions as to the garden design, such as choosing colors that blend and making sure all plants are visible (i.e., tall in back, short in front).

4. Plan the garden together, using graph paper to draw a plan of what you will plant where.

Step 3: Starting Seedlings

1. Buy seeds (or plan where you will buy potted plants).  Sources include gardening catalogs, hardware stores and nurseries.  You may want to plan to use a combination of seeds and purchased plants.  Plants should not be purchased until it is time to plant the garden.

2. Have students bring in yogurt containers, foam egg cartons and other containers in which to start seeds.  You can buy, borrow or ask for donations of potting soil, fertilizer, straw, shovels, a rake, and a hoe.

3. Plant seeds.  Punch a small hole in the bottom of containers, fill with soil, bury seeds according to instructions and place containers on trays to catch extra water.  Students should be responsible for caring for their plants.  They can also measure plant growth, ger¬mination time, and other variables and keep track of their progress in a science journal or lab notebook.

4. Keep seedlings in a sunny window or under grow lights.

5. After 4 to 6 weeks, seedlings will be ready to transplant.

Step 4: Planting the Garden

1. Prepare the soil.  Turn it over and add some fertilizer.

2. Plant seedlings outdoors.  Make sure danger of frost is past.

3. Apply mulch to prevent soil erosion, maintain soil moisture and slow weed growth.

4. Set up a schedule for garden maintenance as a class.  Tasks may include watering, weeding and replacing mulch.

5. Set up a time to observe the garden once a week.  Keep track of what plants are present, which are blooming and what insects are seen in the garden.

6. Clarify a no pesticide policy.

7. Make a plan for caring for the garden over the summer.  Parents are often happy to help, especially if they have been involved in planning the garden.  The more people are involved, the less likely your garden will become a burden for a small number of people.

NationalGeographic IMAX Free Classroom Butterfly Lesson Plan Guides!

Classroom Activities – Flight of the Butterflies – All Age Groups

Classroom Activities – Flight of the Butterflies – Grade 7 to Grade 12

Educator Guide – Complete for All Ages – Flight of the Butterflies -sm   (79 pp)

And in Spanish!

Spanish – El Vuelo de las Monarca – Guia del Educador – 11.1.12 – FINAL

Other Great Butterfly Learning Resource Links:

Our Favorite:  The Karner Blue Butterfly Recovery Program, in New York:

http://www.albanypinebush.org/conservation/wildlife-management/karner-blue-butterfly-recovery.

Wilton Preserve Blue Karner Recovery:

http://www.wiltonpreserve.org/conservation/karner-blue-butterfly.

Nature Conservancy Karner Blue Recovery

http://www.nature.org/ourinitiatives/regions/northamerica/unitedstates/indiana/journeywithnature/karner-blue-butterfly-1.xml.

Nature Conservancy of Canada Karner Blue Recovery

http://www.natureconservancy.ca/en/what-we-do/resource-centre/featured-species/karner_blue.html.

Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History

http://spotabutterfly.com/.

New Mexico Butterflies

http://www.nmnaturalhistory.org/300seconds-butterflies.html?searched=butterflies&advsearch=oneword&highlight=ajaxSearch_highlight+ajaxSearch_highlight1.

And for other Fun Learning Science Games, we invite you to visit here:

http://www.science-lessons.ca/games/ocean.html

http://www.science-lessons.ca/games/space.html

http://www.science-lessons.ca/games/brain.html

 http://www.literature-enrichment.com/

And Our New High School and College Study Guides (All Supporting The Recovery of The Karner Blue Butterfly!:

Pass the Nelson Denny: Complete Study Guide and Practice Test Questions:

http://www.amazon.com/Pass-Nelson-Denny-Complete-Questions/dp/1482620588.

Pass the PSB COMPLETE Health Occupations Aptitude Exam Study Guide and Practice Test Questions:

http://www.amazon.ca/Complete-Occupations-Aptitude-Practice-Questions/dp/1481200682.

Practice the HOBET V!: Health Occupations Basic Entrance Test Practice Questions:

http://www.amazon.com/Practice-HOBET-Occupation-Entrance-Questions/dp/1479104000.