Sunday, 24 October 2010

SOS: Science on Saturdays (or Sundays)

You may recall I mentioned a few weeks back that I emailed a few people asking permission to download a repeat copy of files due to losing backups?

Well, The lab of Mr Q (or eequalsmcq) was THE one I was particularly desperate to retrieve:
I sent an email politely asking if there was any way Mr Q would allow me to download the files I'd bought from months back. Fast forward: I received a very friendly reply and link to download the files again. Phew!!!! What a relief.

Here's the crazy thing; I'd paid for the downloads way back in January of this year knowing we wouldn't start using it until tama 2 was nearer six years of age. But because I could get them for a jolly good discounted price, I didn't hesitate to buy four of the elementary science courses.

I'm just grateful Mr Q (Scott McQuerry) was such a nice bloke about it all and allowed me access for a second download. Yay! Scott!!!

And here we find ourselves with our first class this morning...

We worked on Earth Science Chapter One. The relevance of starting with Earth Science is because the field trip to the Stardome is still fresh in everyone's mind.
I took into consideration that tama 1 would be very knowledgeable about this subject, so the plan was to have tama 1, and tamāhine 1 take turns to teach the lesson with their father. I floated from my laptop following the readings on screen, to joining them at the table for the quiz. My role today - acting as teacher aide.

I'm so relieved whaiāipo has agreed to make this commitment to our SOS classes. { I thought I was pretty clever coming up with the name SOS: Science on Saturdays, hee hee.} The lessons can be either Saturday or Sunday because we'll be working around whaiāipo and any weekend work he might have on. This weekend was a prime example. He worked on Saturday but not today, therefore class was held on Sunday. No doubt there will be weekends when he will be working both days, but we can deal with those as they come along.

Tama 2 learned that the universe is THE biggest thing and that an asteroid can be as big as Mt Ngongotaha, meteoroids are the height of our house.

I extended my understanding of why toilets in the northern hemisphere flush differently to southern hemisphere. "What is she talking about?"

Well, it was on the topic of the Milky Way Galaxy and the fact that it's best described as a spiral shape. Mr Q suggests we go into the bathroom and flush the toilet. In doing so, the idea is we'd see how the water forms a spiral as it flows down the drain, and that spiral shape is what a spiral-shaped galaxy looks like.

Luckily whaiāipo was taking this part of the lesson because he explained that toilets in New Zealand don't flush in a spiral at all. He then used a term, which I'm pretty sure is just a plumber's colloquial name and that's a "dump toilet" -- yes, that's what he said!! Our hand basins and baths on the other hand, they will have the water go down in a spiral, so let's use them as our example for a spiral shape okay? {giggle} At that point I added my two cents worth and said that the water spirals in the opposite direction in the northern hemisphere to which tama 1 quickly clarified by saying, "because of the Coriolis effect - which is caused by the sun."

[ I spent probably half an hour this evening looking at videos on YouTube which would you believe are about flushing toilets!!! Crazy behaviour!! The northern hemisphere toilets definitely had a swirl. Interesting. The southern hemisphere toilets (not surprisingly, the bulk of the clips are filmed in Australia but in this instance I don't mind that! LOL) are as whaiāipo said, just like ours in New Zealand because ... well, that's where the majority of our toilets are imported from -- okay, there and China, but my story is about spirals so let's keep to the topic eh!! I even found an article someone wrote about her experience of toilets in New Zealand!! Pretty fascinating topic in the end. I laughed to myself thinking, "I cannot believe I'm watching toilets flush!!! Now THAT'S crazy behaviour!! Oh well, does it count towards being part of testing science? LOL]

So anyway, I got side-tracked but it all stemmed from our lesson this morning, yet it is all educational nevertheless eh?

The older kids did a great job being teachers.

I really do hope our SOS classes continue.

Thanks for dropping by
ka kite

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