Science Alive

Yesterday we all went off to the Adelaide Showgrounds for Science Alive Show 2012, part of National Science Week. It was our first ever science show and what fun it was. We were there for more than 4 hours and still didn’t really finish exploring everything there was to see.  The range of displays was broad, with plenty of fun for kids and adults alike.

Our kids had their faces painted, then had lots of fun exploring the displays.

We got up and personal with some reptiles.

Here is Ben holding a Black Headed Python found in Northern Australia. Today we did a bit of googling about them and enjoyed this page with photos and video.

Ben and Ryan enjoyed this simple activity. The yellow buckets were spring loaded like a pump and had a hole at the end. The folks from the University of Adelaide filled them with (presumably) dry ice and the kids then got to shoot the gas rings into the air.

There is so much more…Ben explored some astronomy, D had a look at the electric car, and a big as telescope. All the kids watched a chemistry show, and the older kids tried to figure out why it didn’t hurt to sit on a chair seat of nails. Ryan discovered a solar powered toy train, and Emma submitted some invention ideas. All the kids LOVED the tasting kinds of exhibits and they are desperate to try make some Sherbert, which they saw demonstrated.

We went along just for the fun of it, and to expose the kids to some sciencey fun. I really think it’s important to keep the fun in learning. I remember school excursions when I was a child and I’ve seen the same thing recently….kids on a fun outing to the zoo or the museum eager to dash around and discover things, but being tied down to trailing around as a mob with piece of paper in hand to answer required questions. It killed it for me, and I generally found such excursions tiresome and frustrating. We did just dash from one exhibit to another, at one stage we’d completely lost all three of the older ones as they all became so excited to see the things they wanted to see. Apart from the anxiety it caused me to track them down and make sure they were all safe, it really was fun for them to explore at their own pace the very things they were interested in. They didn’t write a single thing down, but everyone learned stuff and discovered a little bit about how cool science really is.

See more of this weeks Unschool Monday posts here.


4 thoughts on “Science Alive

  1. We had ‘Science in a Van’ come to our school recently. They too had the chair with nails and demostrated with a teacher sitting on. She played up to it very well! It was a team of this super nerdy looking science dude and a lovely woman! They had the kids in hysterics.They all thought the show was too short, but were treated to more age appropriate bits throughout the day. That was followed a few weeks later with a science fair. Jasper investigated insulation and Solana observed what did and didn’t mix with oil. Adrian did work as a whole class. One of those projects was the life cycle of a chicken. I kindly brought a chicken into school and luckily it was well behaved! Nothing like hands-on experience. Science is just sooooo much fun!

  2. That looked like a great day out!
    Another unschooling friends and I took our kids to the zoo today and we were chatting about how great it was to be able to follow the kids to where they wanted to look rather than them have the whole day organized for them.

  3. Sounds like such a wonderful day just going with the flow, we did something similar recently with our family and it brought back so many memories of school trips for me…the excitement of new adventures and the boredom of restrictions…so happy my children can enjoy it without the obligatory tests, forms and check lists!

    Oh and the face paints are amazing :)

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