Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Aquatic Animals

Our new science text is Apologia's Exploring Creation with Zoology 2: Swimming Creatures of the Fifth Day.  We were both so excited to start this study!
This is the notebooking journal we bought to go with the text, to hold all our work.
(Inside, Maggie is able to record the things she learns.)
After our first day of reading from the text, we also read The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That's Wish for a Fish: All About Sea Creatures by Bonnie Worth.
Here are some more of her journal pages.  I always add applicable stickers to her work.  She loves these.
For our very first experiment in this first lesson, we created a miniature gyre (a surface current) in a glass pan using water, glitter, and two sources of wind (a handheld fan and a blow dryer).  Here, Mags is adding glitter to our pan of water.  (I placed a white piece of paper underneath the pan so it would be easier to see our glitter.)
Next, we turned on our wind sources, with Maggie's facing the surface along one side of the pan, and mine facing the surface of the opposite side.
Pretty quickly, our glitter started moving in a large circle in the pan.  We created our very own miniature gyre!
 We also did a fun "Ocean Currents Science Experiment," found at http://lifeovercs.com/ocean-currents-science-experiment/, using a large, glass baking dish, plastic ocean creatures, cold water, blue food coloring, ice cubes, a wooden spoon, boiling water, and red food coloring.  This time, I placed a white towel under our dish for optimal viewing.
After we added cold water to our dish, we dropped in a couple of drops of blue food coloring to make it look more ocean-like.
Next, following the instructions on the site, we added ice cubes to our water, mixing and mixing until the cubes melted more and got our "ocean" really cold.
Meanwhile, we boiled some water on the stove and added red food coloring to it.  (This would help us see how deep ocean currents are formed when cold water mixes with warmer.)
We trickled in a bit of our red, hot water into the corner of our dish and watched the swirling of the current move across the dish.  (Later on in this study and in this post, we would do a similar experiment to determine which is heavier, hot or cold water.  See below.)
Next, we watched the "Digging the Deep" episode on our The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That! Ocean Commotion! DVD.
(Here is that same episode on YouTube,)
After that we watched another one, "The Magic School Bus Goes to Mussel Beach," also on YouTube (and below).
We then read in our text about tides and the layers of the ocean before reading The Magic School Bus: On the Ocean Floor by Joanna Cole.
We found a neat idea for "Ocean Zones in a Jar" on Pinterest (the link being http://www.icanteachmychild.com/make-ocean-zones-jar/) and decided to do it.  Follow the link for the actual instructions, but this project uses everyday household items that are easy to gather so not a lot of planning is needed.  Here, Maggie is mixing the "trench" of our layer jar.
Layers, layers, and more layers!  (She loved this!)
Ready for labels!  (It's hard to see the differentiation between our bottom two layers in this picture, but we could see it when we held it up to the light.)
All labeled!  I wish the "Sunlight" and "Twilight" layers were each other's colors, but that "Twilight" layer is made of oil and doesn't dye easily.  The "Sunlight" layer is made of rubbing alcohol and sits nicely on top of the "Twilight" layer but, in hindsight, maybe we shouldn't have added blue food coloring as the site suggested.  Maybe yellow would have been better because it might have shown up brighter than the "Twilight" layer.  Still, Maggie loved this activity and is very proud of her jar!
Great job, Mags!
Later, for an addition to her notebooking journal, we made the "Ocean" mini-book from Scholastic's Easy Make & Learn Projects: Animal Habitats (pages 45-49).
Here it is, all done, and adhered in our journal.
At the text's suggestion, we learned more about how air pressure worked on our lungs underwater using a 2-liter bottle with a cap, and a balloon.  First, we stuck a balloon into the bottle, hanging on to the end.  Next, with most of the balloon down in the bottle, we blew it up as large as it would go and tied it off.  
Placing the cap on the bottle, we put the bottle on the floor and stepped on its side.  This created air pressure in the bottle.  What happened?  The balloon deflated a little, just as our lungs get smaller the deeper we go underwater.  When we picked our feet up off the bottle, the balloon expanded to its full capacity again, just as our lungs return to normal size as we come up higher in water.  Neat!  We recorded these findings in our journal.
That day, during lunch, we watched Disney Nature's Oceans.
It is suggested in the text that each student makes an "ocean box" for models of all the creatures we will learn about.  We wrapped a shipping box in wrapping paper that looked like water, then added scrapbook pages that resembled water, and blue cellophane for an added touch.  We can't wait to add all the creatures to our ocean scene!  First up?  Whales!
This will sit on one of our bookcases in our classroom.
The last thing we did for Lesson 1 was another experiment, a "Water Temperature" experiment to determine which is heavier -- warm or cold water.  First, we got a bowl of hot water and added blue food coloring to it.
 Next, we got a cup of very cold ice water and added yellow food coloring to it.  (This dyeing process would help us see what the two different sources of water were doing once added together.)
 To watch the procedure slowly, we poked a hole in the bottom of the cup and let the cold water trickle into the bowl of hot water.  Immediately, we noticed the yellow water sinking lower in the bowl.  The conclusion?  Cold water is heavier than warm water!
This was a great lesson!  Tomorrow, we start our study of whales with Lesson 2.  Can't wait!  Check back for that post in about a week!

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