Cabin fever from the recent ice storm?

Oooh Nooo, another day of being stuck indoors for the younger kids (they can only be outside for so long) and you don’t anticipate another day of video games and LOUD tv shows…. so on Skye’s suggestion I’ve made of list of links to 100’s of great and fun science and arts activities. Most are short. Some will take you into the Christmas break. It’s too long for here so I’ve put it on my *new* Facebook page called sciencecabinet and crossposted it below.    Hundreds of Activities in science and in the arts for kids (and their parents) who are stuck inside… Links of links from India. Each project has nice pictures and an easy description. English is of course the national language of India but you will find some unusual words or usages – that’s part of the fun of it! From math to arts to science of all kinds. Start with the link “Toys from Trash” to get a feel for it. Short science activities from the Mother of All Hands-On Musems, the Exploratorium in San Fransisco (OKC’s Omniplex was inspired by the Exploratorium). Each activity has a description, an explanation, and usually a video to show how to do it. Toymaker site with good photos and more – of simple toys that have a sort of science angle to them. Broken into two age groups – elementary and middle school (which includes adults). Webmaster is a middle-school science teacher. More on the weird side, like “unwise microwave experiments”, but great for older husband-types. Kids will enjoy watching Dad play. List of links to more kids at-home science projects links. Some of these projects are more long-term, like making mosaics. They are all very good and are collected from around the world. Shows you the tricks on how to perform 60 classic, basic science demonstrations and do them so they actually work. He sells materials for some really cool demos, but he also has a series of bell-ringers on video. Search his site for experiments, or search youtube for “Steve Spangler Sick Science” for the bellringers. Very positive, upbeat guy who uses science as a tool to teach positive thinking. Most of these take much longer, and are more keyed to those interested in environmental science and/or using a microscope. Bill has a few projects, but those are very well explained. More out-of-doors activities than not. More projects, most of them long-term but there are some good ones here. Air cannons, marshmallow guns (automatic of course) and more!

My favorite picture from our game camera so far.   A baby raccoon meets the local feral cat.  Neither wants to tangle with the other, but neither one knows how to get out of it, either!  So they just circled each other and slowly backed away.

Thousands of free science lesson plans from the Yale National Initiative

“To Strengthen Teaching in Public Schools” is their motto.  Simple and clear.

Yep, it’s true.   They are all free!   There are literally thousands of lessons here – hundreds of them are in science, as well as in literature and other areas.   There were written over the years by teachers from several summer science institutes.  Most of them have a written abstract, a narrative, objectives, worksheets, grade levels and references.    Don’t let the name “Yale” scare you – this site is really quite friendly to use.

You are given three choices; I would start at the top one “Search Curricular Resources from Local and National Seminars” and click on “search”.

This might easily become one of your biggest resources for you science classes.


STEM Workshop at OSU

Wow !  If you didn’t go to this one-day event last Friday you missed a super workshop!  If you ever get a chance to go to another one at Stillwater, the correct answer is a resounding “YES”.  I hope to get some pictures I can post.

The pace was fast and furious – just the way I like it.

The facilities were at the College of Education at Willard Hall at OSU.  Now, I had not been back to Willard Hall in . . .  well, a long time.  I had not seen it since it was renovated to become the home for OSU’s College of Education and I must say – as far as beauty and professional presentation this facility tops any other college of education in the region.  The renowned OSU gardens on one side, Theta Pond on another, and Whitehurst Hall on the third gives it the perfect setting.  Add to that the renovation was able to retain the colonial architecture both inside and out, while totally changing the interior with no hint of it ever having been a dorm – except the refurbed living and dining areas.  Very nice, and reminds us teachers of another meaning of the word “class”.

The presenters were top-notch, from Dr. Lowery of Berkley who kept us on the edge of our seats to the Delta/Foss people who kept us laughing.  I think everyone got lots of great ideas for teaching science and math to our students in the fall.  I loved how all grade levels were well-represented, from K on up.

It’s always great to see old friends and acquaintances while at the same time meeting new people who are leaders in their field, top teachers, and excited young college students.   I hope they will do it again so that you can attend.

Ghost Towns in Oklahoma

We will bring the history lesson (and posts) to an end today – what better place than ghost towns.   Here is a list of nearly 100 in Oklahoma!  Surely there is one near you.  These all have links and many of them have comments and images.  You can add to the list and you can add your images.   Sounds to me like a great place to begin (or end) a research project.   So here’s the link, and tomorrow we’ll get back to science in the GSO – the Great State of Oklahoma.

Welcome Visitor !!

As you can tell, I am still experimenting with setting up this blog.

Please come back soon and watch it develop!

This site is, and had been, primarily a resource for teaching science (especially elementary and homeschool science) in Oklahoma and Texas.

Don Loving