From the category archives:

Materials

Magic Milk

November 9, 2012 Activities

Do you know how detergent works? If you vaguely remember your senior chemistry, you would know that it is a long molecule, one end is hydrophillic, or water loving, the other is hydrophobic, or water hating. What that means is that one end grabs on to the water molecules, one end grabs on to grease [...]

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Straw Rockets

September 21, 2012 Activities

Remember these? I was inspired by Kate at Picklebums, but with our own twist. Because we’re not about the art, we’re about the science. So we didn’t make pretty rockets, we compared all sorts of different materials to see which goes the furthest. On second thoughts, maybe we’re not scientists so much as insanely competitive. And [...]

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The Witches

September 14, 2012 Activities
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I remember doing these as a kid and for some reason I thought they were very complicated, but they turned out to be really simple. Perhaps it’s just that my artistic standards have slipped, the girls were thrilled to have something that looked like a recognisable face rather than being disappointed it wasn’t a perfect [...]

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Wordless Wednesday – Sand and Water

August 29, 2012 Babies
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I don’t think the attraction ever fades. Playing in dirt – the original open-ended multi-age game.

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Ice Lanterns

June 21, 2012 Activities
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For the southern hemisphere today is the winter solstice, the shortest day of the year. Most of the winter solstice traditions come from the northern hemisphere where it is very dark and snowy, so they often involve candles and bonfires to make light. I wanted to use candles, but I also wanted some way to [...]

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Wordless Wednesday – Jelly Stained Glass Stickers

June 20, 2012 Materials
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A while ago we made stained glass stickers using jelly. We gave them several days to dry, then they came up beautifully and we put them on several windows. You can see here how the jelly is crystalising as it dries further, this is bleaching the colours so they won’t last forever. While they last [...]

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Wordless Wednesday – 7 Super Shots

June 13, 2012 Earth and Beyond

A couple of weeks ago Penny from Wildlife Fun 4 Kids tagged me in 7 Super Shots. I’m not much of a meme girl, but I do like using photos and they’re different prompts to my normal. Plus it was fun going through my thousands of photos, the difficulty was in whittling it down to [...]

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Quiz – The Plastic Edition

June 12, 2012 Lists
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I know it has its down sides, but plastic isn’t necessarily evil. It is infinitely moldable and comes in all sorts of types, and in the end materials have to come from somewhere – chopping down trees or mining metals aren’t wonderful either. So what do you know about plastics and how bad are they? [...]

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Inventing the Wheel

June 11, 2012 Energy and Change
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As part of my series on changes in everyday things my husband suggested tyres, which started me looking at iron rims, rubber and pneumatic tyres. And as a title, the obvious has to be that well-known phrase ‘Re-inventing the wheel.’ Except I hate that phrase so much that I got side tracked, and instead this post [...]

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The Saga of the Stained Glass Jelly

May 24, 2012 Activities
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This is one of those great ideas that turned into … something. Part painting, part experiment, part playing with food, part mess making, part problem solving, part colour mixing – that’s a lot of parts. It all started when I saw some kids at school fingerpainting with jelly. That would make great stained glass, I thought. [...]

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