My final week of teaching science to this amazing group of elementary school summer campers! This week we did all of the fun things we didn’t have time to do earlier this summer. With the older group (just got done with 1st – 4th grade), we made bubble gum using Steve Spangler’s kit. The kit comes with all of the needed ingredients, you just open it up and read the directions. We had to move to a classroom that had a microwave, but it was worth the inconvenience to see them using teamwork to complete this project without much teacher instruction. We used two kits for 16 children and we had enough leftover to give all of the younger children a piece (all 18 of them). I chose not to use this activity with the younger group due to the particular personalities enrolled.
With both groups of children, I passed out several plain white T’s & some Sharpies. They doodled on the shirts, then I passed out pipettes and cups of rubbing alcohol. When they dropped the alcohol on their doodles, the ink blurred into cool designs. When the designs were done, we rinsed the shirts, then I tossed them in the dryer after class to set the ink. We donated the “art” to the local shelter, which is a critical component in a school where family income levels are as high as they are at my school!
Finally, we had some extra time with the younger group, so we crushed up Cheerios, then Total cereal, and then gathered sand from the playground. We took magnets to all three substances to compare the iron content. Luckily the playground sand had the most, which is how it was supposed to go.