Sunday, September 16, 2007

Science Content

Because I am trying to be The World's Coolest Mom in the eyes of my quickly-becoming-jaded eldest son, I took him out on a shopping excursion yesterday.

"Shopping? We have to go SHOPPING?" he whined.

"Yes, dear. Because I can't count on The Littles to help me out at the grocery store, and I know how much you like to go shopping for meat..." (my son, the vegetarian)

After a quick trip to the Chinese Market (hey! Where else can you get beef tenderloin for $7/pound?), I headed back for home. Mr. Grouchy was slouched down in Homer's passenger seat, playing with the seat warmers while I cruised slowly past the mall. (oh, did I mention that the car now has a name? Yes, it's Homer... the Odyssey).

"Honey, do you think we should go shopping at the mall, just you and me? Maybe you could look at overpriced jeans, or skateboard-and-skull branded oversized shirts. Or we could just sniff all the pretty smells at the soap store..."

He laughed, "Yeah, I need to stop by Hello Kitty." He was getting the joke. Whew.

But it was not the mall we were heading for after the groceries were bought.

It was Mollie Stone's.

Yes, another grocery store. But this one wasn't for food.

This one was for SCIENCE!

Because yesterday was the day we became Backyard Scientists.

Hello, Dry Ice!!!!!

A bowl of cold water...

A bowl of hot water....

And a weed that didn't have a chance...

And hey, look what you can do when you put dry ice into a deflated balloon and tie it shut.

(you can still see the little white nugget of dry ice inside the balloon. It's floating in a pan of warm water)

Experiments in Carbonation:

That's room temperature lemonade, two identical glasses. One with a little nugget of dry ice (thumb sized) dropped into it (on the right), and one with a large nugget (deck of cards size) dropped into it (on the left).

We then did taste tests. Both were chilled, but the one on the right (little nugget) wasn't AS cold, and it tasted just like lemonade. The one on the left, though, was REALLY cold, and had effervescence. Not big bubbles like soda, but some tingly feeling on the tongue. Really quite fun.

Of course, you can only say "Don't touch, don't touch, don't touch" so many times, before SOMEONE has to say "Well, I wonder if -70C is REALLY all that cold..."

Yeah, kid. You thought licking a flag pole in winter hurt? I'll see if I can take a photo of his blister later today.

We all had to wear 'safety glasses'. For the little ones, that meant sun glasses if they wanted to come outside and watch the experiments.

So, Skip. How am I doing in the Mom Department today?

"Yeah, mom. You really are The Coolest Mom Ever. At least today."

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