Ice, Ice, Baby!Posted: December 3, 2011
Ok, so long time, no blog again. Just been frantically busy with working full time, getting through the “end of school year” things with the boys and getting Christmas preparations underway.
But I have stopped to “play” and I have some of those experiences to share with you.
At work, I was having (and am still having) an issue with the same group of boys going to block corner every day and building the same things so I decided to shake it up a little. While researching “activities for block corner” I came across several gems, tow of which I have put into practice. We are now having a “girls only” day in block corner once a week on a rotational basis – last week it was Friday, this week it will be Monday and so on. I have also issued some block challenges. We’ve been enjoying the book Santa’s Aussie Holiday and without giving too much of the plot away, Santa lands at Australia Zoo and leaves his reindeers there while he tours the country. So in my pre-school group we thought the folks at Australia Zoo would definitely need a reindeer enclosure that would stop the reindeers from walking away AND flying away and thus began our first challenge. I have also added “Christmas” blocks which are old food packets wrapped in Christmas paper – very simple but in great demand!
Anyway, in the course of my research I found “ice sculpture”. Oh right, I thought but then it turned out to be simpler than I imagined and of course I had two eager “scientists/sculptors” here to try it out. Over the course of a Saturday we froze varying amounts of water in just about any vessel we could find. If you’re going to try this at home, you had better do it soon before the fridge fills up with Christmas goodies. Then when Sunday dawned and despite 538 checks done by the boys (involving opening freezer doors and inserting fingers into very cold places) the water was all frozen.
So out it came, into a large baking tray with much discussion on the placement of our “ice-blocks” which we stuck together with the help of some table salt. Then we dripped some food colouring over our masterpiece and settled back to watch it melt.
There is so much learning in this! For example:
Which containers freeze best and produce the most interesting shapes
If you just wait on a hot day, frozen water will just fall out of whatever it was frozen in. Patience boys!
Food colouring looks really cool in the cracks in the ice.
Different shapes melt in different and often unexpected ways.
That’s just the “tip of the iceberg” (boom boom) and now that I have road tested it at home it will definitely go into my program of summer activities at Kindy.