April & May Science Experiments

We picked animals to research and filled out report sheets on them (this is Fritz’s report on the blobfish).
April & May Science Experiments

We filled out some cladograms.
April & May Science Experiments

We solved a puzzle using a dichotomous key.
April & May Science Experiments

We looked at the bacteria in yogurt under the microscope. We left out a bit of yogurt overnight and then looked at it. We discovered there were a lot more bacteria on the slide the second day.
April & May Science Experiments

We identified whether plants from our yard were monocots or dicots.
April & May Science Experiments

We looked at a monocot and a dicot under the microscope.
April & May Science Experiments

We identified the body parts of a cockroach. We were supposed to do the same with a spider, but after months of watching for spiders, we never caught one (and only saw a few very tiny ones)!
April & May Science Experiments

We cut a banana in half lengthwise and put the halves in ziploc baggies. We added 1 teaspoon of yeast to one bag and sealed them up squeezing as much air out as possible. The yeast digested the banana into a soupy mess while the plain banana stayed firm and puffed up the bag a bit. (Cameron’s and my hypotheses about what would happen were completely wrong, but Fritz’s was right.)
April & May Science Experiments

We examined a mushroom and identified the parts and then dissected it.
April & May Science Experiments

March Science Experiments

We drew food webs for our backyard (including our dog and lizards… she really eats lizards).
March Science Experiments

We looked at a torn blade of grass under the microscope.
March Science Experiments

We looked at rhizobacteria under the microscope.
March Science Experiments

We made a terrarium in an empty pickle jar.
March Science Experiments

We picked two identical leaves off one tree. We put 1/2 cup of distilled water in one jar and 1/2 cup distilled white vinegar in another jar and added a leaf to each jar. We let them sit overnight. The next day, the leaf that had been in the water was bright green and still looked healthy while the leaf that had been in the vinegar was very dark green and a bit shriveled.
March Science Experiments

We planted four radish seedlings and watered one with pure water, one with pure vinegar, one with 4 parts water and 1 part vinegar, and one with 4 parts vinegar and 1 part water. The one with pure water kept growing, the one with pure vinegar died within a few hours. The one with mostly water tried to keep growing, but wasn’t healthy, and the one with mostly vinegar grew for a couple days and then died.
March Science Experiments

February Science Experiments

We pretended to be owls and hunted different colored pom-pom mice. We chose the color we could see the best for the first one we grabbed. Both Fritz and Adrian picked yellow while Cameron chose black.
February Science Experiments

We looked at Lola’s hair under the microscope.
February Science Experiments

We made fossil casts. We pressed shells and things into clay and then poured plaster of paris on top of the clay.
February Science Experiments

We looked closely at the layers of a sedimentary rock.
February Science Experiments

We completed a logic puzzle identifying which fossils are found in what layer at the Grand Canyon.
February Science Experiments

We looked at cut pieces of trees and learned about the rings and what they mean.
February Science Experiments

We compared different soil samples under the microscope.
February Science Experiments

We learned about and made biomes.
February Science Experiments

January Science Experiments

We looked at blood under the microscope. None of the boys were willing to prick their own finger so I ended up doing it.
January Science Experiments

We listened to each other’s heartbeats using the stethoscope. Little did I know when I bought that stethoscope in 1997 for nursing school that it would still be getting used 20 years later!
January Science Experiments

We used balloons to measure our lung capacity. We took really big breaths
and then breathed all the air out into the balloons. Not surprise that Cameron has the biggest lung capacity, followed by me, then Fritz, and Adrian has the smallest.
January Science Experiments

We moved our joints in all the different ways joints move.
January Science Experiments

We dissected a chicken wing, paying attention to the skin, fat, muscles, and bones and how they connect to each other.
January Science Experiments

We demonstrated how quickly bacteria multiply. We started with a sheet of
paper representing the parent bacterium. We ripped it in half showing that one
becomes two in 15 minutes. We ripped those in half making four in 30 minutes.
Then we ripped those in half making eight in 45 minutes and so on until after 150 minutes we would’ve had 1,024 bits of bacteria confetti. We graphed the exponential growth.
January Science Experiments

We sat still and contemplated the organ systems that were working inside our bodies.
January Science Experiments

We examined insect wings and looked at them under the microscope. (This is a cockroach wing. It’s strangely pretty.)
January Science Experiments

We made a to scale timeline of the geological time of the earth. It stretched all the way across the entire house. The beginning of time is at the door. The little circle at the bottom is the appearance of humans.
January Science Experiments

November and December Science Experiments

We opened the second jar of applesauce we canned two months ago. Nobody was brave enough to eat it, though.
November and December Science Experiments

We identified the parts of a plant.
November and December Science Experiments

We made a slide using the root and looked at it under the microscope.
November and December Science Experiments

We dissected a lima bean and identified the seed parts.
November and December Science Experiments

We dissected a flower and identified all the parts.
November and December Science Experiments

We made a battery out of a lime, pennies, nails, wire, and a calculator.
November and December Science Experiments

We looked at sound waves by plucking guitar strings and rubberbands stretched between our fingers.
November and December Science Experiments

Cameron punched a word in braille on cardboard and the other two boys tried to read it with their fingers.
November and December Science Experiments

We looked at a slide of skin cells.
November and December Science Experiments

We assembled a filtration system (to show how a kidney works) using a two-liter bottle, rocks, sand, cotton balls, and coffee filters. They ran water mixed with dirt and oil through it.
November and December Science Experiments

We balanced on one foot and observed how their bodies worked to keep them upright.
November and December Science Experiments

We shined a flashlight in their eyes to see how their pupils automatically constrict when exposed to light.
November and December Science Experiments

We demonstrated how the body wants to stay in homeostatis. They checked their pulse (Fritz’s was 72 beats per minute) and then exercised for one full minute. They checked their pulse again (Fritz’s went up to 108 beats per minute). Then they relaxed for five minutes and then checked their pulse one more time (Fritz’s had gotten back down to 78 beats per minute).
November and December Science Experiments

I told each of them their birth stories. Adrian apologized for being born 12 days late.
November and December Science Experiments

And, of course, we dissected a frog.

October Science Experiments

We leaned about DNA and made a double helix partially unzipped with a section being replicated with RNA. We used marshmallows (the different colors represent different amino acids), beads, toothpicks, and pipe cleaners to make it.

We extracted some DNA from Cameron’s cheek cells and then looked at it under the microscope. It was quite complicated and only worked so-so.

We learned about mitosis and made posters showing the life cycle of a cell. Those posters are now on the walls of our dining room (aka schoolroom).

We viewed a prepared slide of an allium (onion) root tip. We could see the cells undergoing mitosis.

We learned about the phases of meiosis. We made a flipbook showing each part.

We viewed a prepared slide of a lily anther undergoing meiosis.

We compared the genetics of the boys and their parents and three of their grandparents.

We looked at hair under the microscope.

We created our very own Qwuitekutesnute. We laid out attributes from the mother and father along with whether those traits were dominant or recessive. Then we flipped a coin to randomly assign those attributes. Using basic DD, rr, Dr, we applied those traits to our baby, resulting in our own unique Qwitekutesnute.

Frog Dissection

Today was the dreaded day. Today was the day we dissected a frog.

Frog Dissection

Fritz started out brave and made the first cuts.

Frog Dissection

Adrian was quite interested looking inside at the organs and identifying them.

Frog Dissection

Cameron, meanwhile, stayed across the deck as far away from the frog as possible. He is perfectly willing to turn in his Man Card if it means he doesn’t have to touch a preserved frog or see very much while it’s being dissected.

Frog Dissection

The dissection eventually got to Fritz and he couldn’t stop gagging. He’s now rethinking the idea of becoming a doctor.

Frog Dissection

It was fascinating. Somehow I never dissected a frog. Cats, sheep heart, cow eye, etc. in A&P in college, yes, but never a frog.

Frog Dissection

I think the boys (at least the older two) are glad that is over and they won’t be dissecting anything else this year.