Monday, 23 March 2015

An Egg Imperiled and another named Gerald

Sprout had wanted to take part in some research at birmingham university that we had seen advertised, they were looking at behaviours of 9-18 year olds and if you took part you had the chance to get paid and also take home an MRI of your brain. We went along for the first part and he absolutely loved it, loved talking to the scientists and loved answering all the comprehension questions which is something he hasn't come across before, and I was really impressed at how thoroughly he went through all the consent and information forms beforehand. 
While he was in there Squidge and Moppet played with some toys in another room with me, and it went on longer than expected so one of the researchers gave Tai a panda to cuddle which was very sweet of her, and of course Tai was excited by this as she loves pandas, and started telling me that they eat bamboo, before promptly falling asleep :)



Back at home they all played out with their friends.


Gruff worked on his car while Squidge and Moppet watched.


We stayed in the next day as everyone was tired, and while Sprout watched some Dan TDM on YouTube Squidge and Moppet played out.


There was a big hail shower which they watched from the doorway.


They also watched someone replace our windscreen, and asked lots of questions :)



Then they read a story together.


They all looked at Moppet's library book about large wild animals, and she wanted to know what noises they all made so we found some videos and recordings on the Internet.



Later she had a hankering for some chocolate spread :)


Then dressed up as princess ironman and had some milk :)


She found Sprout's old camera and took some photos.


They all made some bread rolls together.


Squidge and Moppet made a cheesecake.


We played with the egg we'd had in vinegar, and they couldn't believe it was now bouncy :)


I had a bet with Sprout that I could make it smaller without breaking the membrane, so we've left it in salt water overnight.


Then we tried to make a normal raw egg float.


We failed.


Then Sprout came up with an idea for an experiment, which involved drawing faces on two eggs (one named David, the other Gerald), covering one in salt and one in sugar, then pouring a solution of chocolate spread over them and seeing if the faces came off any differently. He then broke some eggs into the solution to see whether the solution affected how easily the yolks broke. We talked about hypotheses and controls.




Once the experiment was finished the bread rolls were ready. 


Later Squidge built a pirate ship fromlego and watched a few things including Gotham and Bridge to Terabithia...


...while Sprout played a Lego creation game online, then designed and built a Lego safe for his free limited edition hot wheels car that arrived in the post and he's decided to keep in the packaging.



Sprout and Squidge wrote some secret messages with lemon juice and left them to dry.


And while we had lemon juice out we decided to do this http://www.sciencekids.co.nz/experiments/lemonade.html Once made, the kids didn't want to drink it so I tried it instead, and let's just say we won't be stopped buying the ready made version any time soon ;)


Sprout telling me about his limited edition hot wheels :)


Squidge and I built a mini Lego set too :)


Once moppet was asleep for the night the boys stayed up designing a giant hero factory guardian for Sprout's car :)


Next morning Moppet watched some more stop motion videos and played with dough...


...while the boys collaborated on finishing Sprout's Lego safe and some guardians to go with it, and then played some Kinect games together, including Kinect Adventure and Yoostar.



We had a trip to their grandparents' house as Sprout had arranged with his grandpa to pot up some plants together ready to sell at the charity day that Sprout is organising.
The boys played some Cleudo.


Sprout and his grandpa went outside to look for some suitable plants to propagate.


Squidge and Moppet played hide and seek with their grandma.



Squidge and I played some Squidge-rules chess, which mostly involves moving the pieces however you like and turning the opposition into zombies :)


Squidge and Moppet put some puppet shows on.


Sprout and his grandpa played some actual chess.


And Sprout and I did some initial planning for his charity fun day.


The nextx day they wanted to use the chocolate powder stencils, so I showed them how to steam milk with the espresso machine (Sprout did his own), and they each did their own stencil.



Later we played with some Polymorph plastic.



Sprout watched some Leokinvideo on YouTube...


...Squidge watched some fan-made Nerf battle films...


...and Moppet played with dough.


They all put on an evening dedicated to Gruff as he'd had a hard week, so they made easter nests and designed a banner and helped me cook his favourite dinner :)


Sprout spent loads of time playing with the kinetic sand again, it really fascinates him :)


We inspected the shell-less egg in the salt water, and it hadn't got noticeably smaller, so we decided to put it in some golden syrup instead.


Sprout spent some time designing a poster for his charity event and helping me set up Twitter and Instagram for it, then made his signature pizza pixels, and Squidge and Moppet made some after. 


They both played with a magnetic spinning top, then Sprout watched some Nerd Cubed...


...and Moppet watched some more Bubble Guppies.


Sprout was really disappointed that he didn't get through to the next part of the brain research as he was outside the target group, and after chatting about what he was specifically upset about it was that he wanted to earn some more money and he really enjoyed answering the questions, so we said we'll try and help him get some extra money, and I printed out some similar pictures and words for him to tell me about :) He was also a bit sad about not getting the brain picture, but all I could really do there was empathise.