Earlier this week, the boys and I attended a show hosted by the CSIRO. A homeschooling mother from the forum, “Connecting Queensland Homeschoolers” kindly organised the event for 120 homeschoolers and their parents.
I don’t tend to book into the CSIRO workshops, as the numbers don’t seem conducive to a positive experience, but the theatre show was a totally different experience. It was very well managed by the organiser and the presenter.
The show centred around the concepts of air, atmostphere and weather and utilised many familiar liquid nitrogen activities –
…dropping various items into the liquid nitrogen and then crushing or crumbling them in their frozen state
…shrinking the volume of a balloon by placing the balloon in liquid nitrogen, cooling the air within, and then warming the balloon (and air within) to return the balloon to its regular size
and listening to the liquid nitrogen boiling in a whistling kettle.
All much loved demonstrations, so while we’ve seen them several times before, repetition is valuable in learning concepts.
Something I learned, not necessarily new but a wise reminder anyway,
…never volunteer for anything!!
The poor mother who volunteered had to choose between a seat with one, long, upright, rusty nail or a seat with hundreds of long upright rusty nails. What a choice! I know which I’d choose…in addition to never volunteering for anything!! Hehehe.
The grand finale was the creation of a cloud. This, we hadn’t seen and it was cool! Boiling water was poured into liquid nitrogen and BOOM…clouds billowing over the impressed audience.
If you get a chance to join a group going to the CSIRO for a theatre show I can highly recommend them. They are very well presented and will leave the kids excited about Science.
The boys and I had a wonderful time and are eagerly looking forward to the next show.
P.S. Actually there were a few new things I learned. Did you know that the CSIRO invented wi-fi, polymer plastic banknotes, Aeroguard and just recently (this is my favourite) self-shearing sheep??!! Yes really. They inject a protein into the sheep, wrap the critter in plastic and then wait for the protein to do its work and the wool virtually falls off the sheep’s back! What will they come up with next?! Amazing and just a little disturbing. 🙂