Saturday, February 4, 2012

"J" is for Jellyfish, Solar System Experiments, and Greek Masks!

Last week was a busy week as always and especially with the many fun projects we were able to accomplish!

For my 4 year old daughter's alphabet box we learned the letter "J" last week.  I had my daughter color a "J" template that I got here and I drew jigsaw pieces on the template.  After I helped her cut out the pieces she glued the letter back together and I cut out a border to look like an outline of puzzle pieces.  So it looked like this:

One thing she made, along with my 7 year old, was a jellyfish.  They were super easy and fun!  We used 1/2 of a paper plate, chenille sticks, glue, tape, googly eyes and markers.

I also read books about Jesus and Jonah while they were doing their jellyfish craft.

We hung up their creations on our alphabet wall which is really on an "A frame" ceiling, hence the slanted look in this picture :)

We also continued our Apologia Astronomy studies with 2 experiments about the planet Mars.   The first experiment was suggested by Anna-Marie at Our Life's Adventures when she was studying astronomy with her children.   So I got the same book out of the library, Mars by Steven Kipp, and tried making our own martian sand to explain why the sand on Mars is red. 

My husband helped with this project which is always a nice and rare treat.  He showed them the steel wool.
And cut the wool into small pieces.

He was able to explain how the wool was magnetic as it stuck to the scissors. 

We put white sand into 2 different pie pans and wool pieces into each pan.

One pan was filled with drops of water while the other one we left dry. 

After a few days the wool started to rust in the pan with water while the other dry pan did not have rust.  We explained that the dust on Mars is red due to the iron oxide which is rust.  According to our Apologia text there is some evidence that there was liquid water on Mars at one time, but currently scientists believe there is none now.

Another fun experiment we did was build the biggest mountain peak in the entire solar system on Mars, and this volcano is called Olympus Mons.

We first made the salt dough recipe that was suggested in the Apologia text that was used for our volcano.
Our volcano is in the background with rocks around it with the text in the forefront that explained the experiment.

We then erupted our Olympus Mons by combining red food coloring, baking soda, vinegar, and dish washing liquid.

We are continuing to study ancient Greek history and this past week we made theater masks as I read information about how the Greeks only used male actors because females weren't allowed to perform.  So the men also played women's roles and usually used 2 sided masks to show 2 different emotions while performing.  Before my children began their masks, we looked up images on the computer of all the different kinds of masks to get ideas.  We stumbled upon a fun game on the computer called "Face Memory" that explained how Ancient Greeks had exaggerated features on their masks to entertain several thousand people in a big theater. This memory game tests how well your children can remember features on a mask.  My children enjoyed testing their memory skills!  Click HERE to play.  Here are some pictures from our mask activity:

My 4 year old insisted I take this picture of her with her mask as she looked into our bathroom mirror :) 

No Ordinary Blog Hop


Love the jelly fish, we have done that too. Love the face masks very creative. Great job on the Mars red sand. If you leave it long enough the steel wool completely disappears and the sand becomes very red. I know this because we left it outside for well over a month and forgot about it:) Voted for you today. Great job on the school work looks like a very busy week.

Hi Anna-Marie! Thanks for stopping by with all your kind comments! We'll keep checking up on our Mars sand :) By the way, I forgot to add a link to my post (will do that now) called "Face Memory" that my kids enjoyed playing and maybe your kids will like it too. I found it when I was looking up examples of Greek masks before we began our project. Here's the link:

Patty said...

I want to go to your school!

momto8 said...

can you be my kids teacher?

LeAnn said...

I can see that you had lots of fun at your house. I loved the activities and I am sure your children are learning a lot.

Heidi said...

What a fantastic week of learning! I love your alphabet wall. Thanks for sharing at NOBH!

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