Magical, Mystical Storm Glass: Space & Weather

Magical, Mystical Storm Glass: Space & Weather

Today our meteorologists-in-training discovered the properties of the chemicals (potassium nitrate, ammonium chloride, camphor, and ethanol) in a storm glass. They then made their own storm glass and learned how they “predicted” weather. The premise of the functioning of the storm glass is that temperature and pressure affect solubility, sometimes resulting in a clear liquid and other times causing precipitants to form. In similar barometers, the liquid level moves up or down a tube in response to atmospheric pressure.

Ask your camper: is a storm glass completely accurate? (No, it is not a truly scientific method)

Aurora Program Pictures

pfs2

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

O’Fallon Program Pictures

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Shark Dissections – Oceanography

Shark Dissections – Oceanography

The ocean is one of the most diverse habitats, with a great variety of animals at all different depths. Fish are just one of the many different types of animals that call the ocean “home”.  Today, our campers explored two types of fish (dissected earlier in the week) – a bony fish (perch) and a cartilaginous fish (spiny dogfish shark). They analyzed the similarities and differences between the two fish side by side, and quite literally got an ‘in depth’ view of the structures and functions of both fishes. One interesting investigation had the campers compare the livers of each fish.

Ask your camper:  What happened when you placed both fish’s livers in water? The shark liver (markedly larger) floated while the perch liver sank. Why did this happen? The shark liver is largely involved with helping the shark remain buoyant in the water (perch have a swim bladder to help with buoyancy while the shark doesn’t). 

Aurora Program Pictures

pfs3

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

O’Fallon Program Pictures

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Fairytale Roller Coasters – Makey Lab

Fairytale Roller Coasters – Makey Lab

The fairytale roller coasters are complete. After working hard for two days in groups, the campers finalized and tested their roller coaster designs. The coasters were created for the same fairy tale creatures the campers built houses for earlier in the week! The designs contained twists, turns, drops and loops. 

Ask your camper: Were you able to create any loops? If so, how?  

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Genetics: Nature or Nurture? Day 5

Genetics: Nature or Nurture? Day 5

After a week of hard work, exploration, and discovery, campers performed a protein purification process to isolate the GFP (green fluorescent protein) product from our bacterial transformation experiment. Our budding molecular biologists used the same process that is performed in the ‘real world’ (by actual molecular geneticists) to isolate a protein product (such as insulin or growth hormone) that has been mass-produced through bacterial transformation. 

Ask your camper: What part of the central dogma deals with protein production in the cell? (translation)

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

pfs1