Monday, August 16, 2010

Wacky Art in Science is way too much fun

We started the week constructing volcanoes from water bottles, shredded paper, plaster and a great product I found at Michaels called Rigid Wrap. Getting the campers to understand that the paper needed to be fluffed not packed took some doing but soon everyone had their volcanoes forming well. We plastered any holes with the leftover grout from the mosaics and let all of the dry.

We finished the first day drawing the designs on our T-shirts. The imagination they showed was impressive. We used permanent sharpies for the designs which are line drawings. Later we'll flood them with rubbing alcohol to make the watercolor type shirts.

The second day we created shapes from colored pipe cleaners then put them into a borax solution to make crystals. All day long the kids went to the window sill to see if their crystals were making. Some of the kids put too much borax into the jars and caused it to precipitate instead of make crystals. The jars had to be reheated for the kids to get their crystals. What a great project this was. It only takes 5 TBS of Borax to 2 Cups of water and 24 hours. 

There was such a lot of excitement to see which volcanoes would erupt best. It takes 1/2 cup water, 1 TBS baking soda, 3 drop of dish washing soap, and a couple of drops of food color in the bottles to start the project. We measured 1/2 Cup vinegar and held a funnel over the top of the bottle and quickly poured in the vinegar. Red and yellow foam spewed out and shot up to the accompaniment of squeals and screams from all the kids. They decided that the wide mouth ones did not shoot as high as the narrow mouth ones.

We did a section on "what makes it work" taking some electronic items apart with screwdrivers and chisels the using some of the components to make robots and other creations. 

Our last project - making ice cream - was not very successful. It was already over 100 degrees when we went out to roll the cans. we were able to get the ice cream to the consistency of milk shakes but no more frozen. We drank them anyway. 

The Arts mini-camp is held at the Wells Branch Community Library and taught by Dianne Koehler.

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