Latticed Learning - Earth Science

Learn while playing with Latticed Learning!  This week's theme has plenty of activities to go along with it - keep reading to find out more!

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Welcome back to Latticed Learning!  This year, we're continuing to learn while we play - repeating many of our favorites from the past while adding in all sorts of new activities as well.

This day's post is devoted to our weekly themes - some weeks have more activities than others, but each lesson will be fun for you to explore with your little one!

Read All About It

Geography From A to Z - We really enjoyed this one and its focus on landforms.  It went along perfectly with several of our activities this week, which I loved.

Planet Earth - A typically fabulous Usborne book that provides just the right amount of information for little learners along with rich illustrations.

The River Grows - this was a reading book from my classroom, but it gives just the right amount of facts while following a river's path from melting snow to the ocean.

Volcanoes (& others in Vocabulary Science Pack) - I thought this one might be a bit over Gv's head at this point, but she was riveted the entire time I read it to her.

Volcanoes - another informative book; kind of a fact overload, but the great photos kept Gv's interest.

My Book of Rocks & Minerals - this was a Christmas gift for our little budding geologist this year. Out of all the rock books I'd investigated, this was definitely the best for elementary-aged kids!

Sing Some Songs

We listened to these selections this week:

To Be a Fossil and Little Black Rock from this album were great additions to the week.

Down in the Valley from the CD I shared here was fun.

We loved the versions of She'll Be Coming 'Round the Mountain from this album and this one.

Watch Some Videos

We didn't watch too much this week, but we did find two things to explore:

We watched several videos on landforms, like this onethis one, and this one.

And we watched this episode and this one of our beloved Magic School Bus (this DVD includes every episode made!).

Play and Create

We did several things to correspond to our topic this week:

First, we built structures on two cookie sheets.  On one, we used plain wooden blocks, on the other, we used these.  Then we shook the cookies sheets to simulate an earthquake and see which structure withstood the shaking better.

Pre-earthquake structures

Didn't take much for those walls to come tumbling down!

Couldn't budge these!  (And man, is that ever some wicked post-nap hair!)

We did a few activities involving food:

I made a new batch of these yummy graham crackers and we followed the directions from this site to talk about fault lines and earthquakes.

Our results were sooo different from the other site.  I'm sure it's because my crackers are thicker.  But it actually worked out just fine, because this ended up looking just like the streets in one of our books on earthquakes!

We used this delicious bread to create different landform types, like shown here.

Not as clear to see as the example I linked to, but Gv did it herself.  There's an island & lake with the bread, a strait between two pieces of cheese, and the rest of the cheese is an archipelago

And then we ate hard boiled eggs,  comparing them to some of our books to see how the yolk, white, and shell resembles the Earth's crust.

Hmmm...maybe I should have cleaned the playdough out from under her nails before we did this one...

We made this exciting ice volcano.

We were so excited to do this, I forgot to take a photo of how I made it.  I got a funnel, covered the point in plastic wrap, then stuck a little rubber bouncy ball down in the bottom of the funnel bowl.  Next, I poured in a little baking soda, then added a tiny bit of water to make a paste.  I pushed it all down really well so that the ball wouldn't move.  I added more baking soda, more water, then some red food coloring and stirred it up a bit.  I covered the top of the funnel with more plastic wrap and stuck it in the freezer.  When I took it out, I slammed it down over a cookie sheet until it plopped out.  I poured on just a tiny bit of vinegar to loosen the ball so I could take it out.
Gv poured some vinegar into the center of the volcano
She was so surprised to see it erupt!

I printed this cute mini-poster for us to hang up and look at all week.

I printed the landform cards and photos out from this site (I shrunk them down, to save ink).  Gv cut out a set of each, matched up the photos to the drawings, then glued them down onto a sheet of construction paper.

I tried to save ink by printing out the illustrations in black & white and then coloring them, but it was kind of a fail.  Go ahead and print them in color when you do it!

We also did the landforms-in-dirt activity on that same site.

We did them all, but this is a gulf

We followed the lead of this site and made the layers of the Earth out of playdough.

A little squashed, but it served its purpose

And we made ourselves some pet rocks:

(We used colored pencils, googly eyes & a pom pom for the nose)

Finally, we spent a ton of time (because the process takes for-ev-er!) messing with Gv's "big" Christmas gift this year: a rock polisher.

The ugly, raw rocks, straight out of the box.
Wow, what a difference it makes just to wash them off!
And now they're all fancied-up and ready to be identified and added to her collection!

Looking for all the great posts associated with this concept in one place?  Check out my Latticed Learning page here!

What's your favorite thing that we did this week?  I'd love to hear!  Either leave a comment below or email me at lisahealy (at) outlook (dot) com.

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