I was almost giddy when I discovered some bird's nest fungus, or Nidulariaceae in one of our flower beds this fall. Giddy? Yes. I think these are some of the most beautiful little fungi around. Because they are small, they might go unnoticed during a walk in the woods. As the name suggests they look like little nests full of eggs shrunken by a shrink ray!
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Fungus comes in such a wide variety of forms with fun and quirky names. Witches butter, turkey tail and hairy curtain crust just to name a few. Although you should always err on the side of caution when it comes to investigating mushrooms and other fungus with kids, they are fascinating organisms to search for.
Why not go on a funky fungus scavenger hunt?Keep a "leave no trace" policy and rather than touch or pick the fungus, photograph it or sketch itwith somecolored pencils in a nature journal. How many different types can you find? Grab a field guide to help you identify and learn more about your discovery.
If you are exploring with adults or teenagers and there is no risk
of anyone taste-testing something they shouldn't, you might want to try making spore prints from mushrooms. Not only can this help youidentify your fungus, but they are also beautiful!
What type of funky fungus did you find? Share your pictures with us on Facebook or Twitter.
With kid's birthday parties to attend and the gift-giving season looming ahead, many of us are probably thinking about gifts. This can get tricky. Who really needs more stuff? Why not give the gift of a hands-on experience? Below you'll find a list of great books that include activities from pure science, to making and building, nature and gardening.
I challenge you to use this guide for elementary age appropriate activity books to choose some activities that you can do alongside a young science-inclined friend, or activities that they can tackle on their own. Give the gift of an experience, rather than stuff!
Why not pair a science, STEM or STEAM activity book with the materials that you need to complete one of the projects inside? Set aside some time to explore, invent, build and get curious with your elementary aged recipient rather than buy a gift just for the sake of gift giving. Check out these titles to get you started.
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Mudworks: Creative Clay, Dough and Modeling Experiences
Although this isn't specifically science related, this one has been a favorite of mine for a long time. With over 100 different dough recipes, you can mix up something that will be the perfect beginning to a model, some creative play, or a great sensory experience. Tons of fun!
Tinkerlab: A Hands-On Guide for Little Inventors
Not only does Tinkerlab include a bunch of activities that will inspire and amaze kids, it also has a lot of practical advice on setting up spaces where children can explore and be creative. A great book for families.
Halloween is such a fun time to wow kids with some spectacular, spooky science! Where to start? Things that bubble and fizz? Slime? "Bloody" secret messages? Doesn't sound that scientific to you? Oh, but it is! With the background info and activity ideas you find in this post, you too, can make learning science fun this Halloween.
Whether you are looking for some dazzle for your science classroom, or for a science activity to keep those kid's hands busy at home, we've got you covered. Here are two FREE downloadable science experiment guides from Steve Spangler science. Read on to find out how you can really knock the kids socks off this October!
I'm excited to share two free Steve Spangler Science guides to get you started on some fun science experiments for Halloween. These will be great for spicing up science class, activities for your after school science club, Halloween party, or at-home activities.
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If you love fun science, then you're probably a Steve Spangler fan. "America's Science Teacher" is known for his fun hands-on science experiments, his popular You Tube channel, "Sick Science", frequent TV appearances on local television stations in his home state of Colorado and national television on shows like Good Morning America, Ellen and on the Weather Channel, or his DIY science show.
What's the pH science? Basically, the pigments in this paper make it work like a big sheet of litmus paper, and the ammonia mixture is a base that causes and acid-base reaction. You can get the paper here.
You can also find out how to make your own Boo Bubbles! These are simply the coolest and are sure to wow your kids or students! Boo Bubbles are bubbles filled with a cloud of carbon dioxide, made with dry ice. See them in action here:
Free Halloween Science Activity Guides
Download the free guides below for these and 23 other Halloween and dry ice experiments!
You'll also love the STEAM Kids Halloween e-book. These activities combine science, technology, engineering, art and math. Learn how to make some pumpkin brush bots, fizzing pumpkin treasure rocks, learn some spider web science, and more!