A naturalized yard: making a difference – submitted by Dave Gervais

This is a picture of my front lawn. You might see a decided absence of grass. When I first moved here, it took me almost 2 hours to cut the grass in the front and back yard. At my wife’s urging she suggested that we plant trees to make the busy road in front of our house disappear, buffer the traffic noise, and put a stop to the endless cutting of grass.

In addition by selecting some plants natural to the landscape, we have made a difference to this small welcome insect. Win/win…considerably less grass cutting, and a more interesting yard.

Extend that same idea to a school yard, and an ecology field trip could be as convenient as a short walk outside.

Images taken with a Motorola Cell Phone with an Android System..

 

Dave Gervais

Chair STAO Safety Committee

 

Thanks for the submission Dave !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Leakproof Bag | Experiments | Steve Spangler Science

Who would have ever thought that a plastic bag, some water, and a few pencils would have adults screaming with fear? Learn how to poke holes in a plastic bag filled with water without spilling a drop. Well, that’s the theory you’re going to test… and it’s wise to practice your liquid trick over the sink. It’s a cool way to learn about the chemistry of polymers. Continue reading

Why white horses aren’t bothered by horse-flies – submitted by Joanne O’Meara

Susanne Åkesson, Professor of Evolutionary Ecology at Lund University in Sweden, has been awarded the prestigious Ig Nobel Prize. The prize, which she shares with six other researchers from Hungary and Spain, was presented to them for their discovery that white horses aren’t particularly bothered by blood-sucking horse-flies. Continue reading

Ice-Tray Battery | Experiments | Steve Spangler Science

You probably know that voltaic batteries come in all kinds of shapes and sizes, from tiny button batteries to car batteries to huge industrial heavy-weights. They turn chemical energy into the electrical energy that people use to power clocks, toys, cell phones, medical devices, tablets, cars, satellites… and an LED! These batteries seem pretty complicated but you can make a real voltaic battery right in your kitchen. Grab the ice tray and start the electrons moving. Continue reading

On the Origin of Butts – YouTube

We’ve already been told that everybody poops – but did you ever stop to consider why? It’s thanks to our heroic through-gut that humans don’t suffer the same fate as jellyfish and anemones, and every hero has an origin story… Hosted by: Olivia Gordon

Homemade Ice Cream | Science Experiments | Steve Spangler Science

Use science know-how to create a tasty vanilla treat!

The Roman emperor, Nero, is credited as the first person to have a type of ice cream made for his meals. Snow was used to freeze fruit drinks that he enjoyed so much. In 1310, Marco Polo helped out as did King Charles I of France in 1640. The French served it in Philadelphia in 1782 to honor a new country: the USA! Dolly Madison served it in the White House in 1813. In 1846, Nancy Johnson invented the hand-crank ice cream freezer. Ice cream cones were first seen in 1904 at the Louisiana Purchase Exposition (better known as the St. Louis World’s Fair). The rest, of course, is history. The secret to making ice cream is to lower the freezing point of ice so it can freeze the cream. How? The scientific secret is plain old salt! Here’s a simple recipe you can follow right at home to make your own ice cream. Who needs Nero?

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