Sometimes (OK, most of the time) I don’t really have an agenda for homeschooling other subjects beyond math and English. I let Ava take the lead and just work off of that. However, I had a homeschool friend who was studying clouds with her 1st grader through K12 and I thought “that sounds good.” So I decided we should study clouds too.
We read quite a bit from Abeka science textbooks I had, borrowed every juvenile non-fiction book on the subject from the library, created a water cycle chart on the wall, constantly pointed out what type of clouds were in the sky whenever we drove anywhere, and performed numerous fun experiments and crafts. Overall, I think it was really successful!
One experiment we did helped us visualize water vapor. First, pour boiling water into a mason jar then set a small metal bowl with ice and little water on top. The inside of the jar will become gaseous and water droplets will form on the bottom of the bowl.
Another day we played with one of Lily’s birthday presents – snow in a bottle. It’s some sort of material that when you add water puffs up and becomes fluffy like snow. The texture is fun and the girls had a good time playing with it.
While the girls were playing with the “snow”, I busted out a few other experiments. First, I added shaving cream to the top of a glass of water then dropped in a few drops of blue food coloring. This illustrated how when clouds get heavy with water vapor, it rains. Cool, huh?
We also created a tornado in a jar. Why? Because the girls wanted to see a tornado.
Then we did some “cloud painting”: equal parts shaving cream and Elmer’s glue. It turns into a puffy, 3-dimensional type of medium, creating the effect of clouds. I gave the girls blue construction paper to paint on, so it seemed like the real deal.
We finished off our cloud study a few days later with a much anticipated “cloud dinner”, as picked out by the girls: jicama, cauliflower and mashed potato clouds and pepper rainbows. Dessert was sunshiny pineapple and marshmallows.