Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Earth's Layers & Atmosphere Card Game {free printable}


Since my son learned the earth's layers (check out our 3-D diagram), I thought it might also be fun to find a way to teach him the atmospheric layers. A rousing game of cards seemed like the perfect way to learn.



I designed a set of 1-10 playing cards plus wild cards, for us to play like Skip-Bo Junior.

DIY the Game!
Download a free 11-page PDF of the playing cards from Google Drive here. If you have trouble accessing the file, you can request permission within Google Drive or email me. Teachers: Use a personal email address when requesting access to my files. Most schools block emails from outside their domain, prohibiting me from granting you access.


Print on heavyweight cardstock and cut out. Print two copies of the WILD cards (on page 5). NOTE: This is a pretty ink-heavy printable; I recommend taking the PDF to a copy shop so as not to use up all your home printer's ink.

How to Win
The first player to play all of the cards from their stockpile is the winner.

How to Play
This is a two-person game. The dealer deals 10 cards facedown to each player; this is their stockpile. The top card is turned over (i.e. face-up) and placed on top of the rest of the cards. Next, the dealer deals three cards in three separate piles to each player face up next to the stockpile. The dealer does this with each turn. 

In the playing area between both players, four piles can be started. These four piles are played on by both players and must begin with a No. 1 card (the inner core) or a Wild card, played face up.


The youngest player looks at the three cards in their "hand" (those dealt face-up by the dealer on the table) as well as the one card on top of their stockpile to see if they can begin a new pile or add to an existing one. The player plays all the cards that they can, even those that may be revealed from under another card that was just played. For example, if there is a No. 2 (outer core) card face-up on one pile, a player can place the No. 3 (mantle) or Wild card on top of it from their hand, as well as any other cards they may have to play. 

If the card from the stockpile is played, the card underneath is turned over. It's the next player's turn when a player can no longer play any cards from their stockpile or hand. NOTE: The card on top of the stockpile may not be moved to the player's hand, even if all the cards in one pile of their hand have been played.

Each time it is a player's turn, three new cards are dealt on top of the existing hand from the last round of play. Once the new cards have been dealt, the player can take their turn.

When a pile has either been completed with the number cards 1-10 and/or a mix of wild cards, the pile is turned over and removed from the playing area, so a new pile can be formed in its place.

If the dealer runs out of cards and neither player has played all the cards from their stockpile, the completed piles can be reshuffled to continue play.


Like this game? Play our Medieval Kingdom version!

Monday, October 19, 2015

After School Linky (10-19)

Welcome to the party!



Thanks for stopping by. Below are just a few of the amazing ideas shared at last week's party.


Bat -AT Word Family Game from Fantastic Fun and Learning.


 26 Free Games to Teach Long Vowel Sounds at The Measured Mom.


 Letter Puzzles {101 Ways to Teach the Alphabet} from Gift of Curiosity.


 5 Crafting Gratitude Turkey Placemats from Mama's Happy Hive.


 Halloween themed Free Sight Word UNO from Stella 123.


 Spider Skip Counting Puzzles from Creative Family Fun.


 Free Spinning Division Printable at 3 Dinosaurs.


Spooky Children's Halloween Books that Aren't Scary at All at The Jenny Evolution.

The After School Linky is cohosted by
Relentlessly Fun, Deceptively Educational
We would love to have you link up your School-Age Post (Ages 5 and up) about your learning week after school including Crafts, Activities, Playtime and Adventures that you are doing to enrich your children's lives after their day at school, home school, or on the weekend!

When linking up, please take a moment to comment on at least one post linked up before yours and grab our after school button to include a link on your post or site! By linking up, you're giving permission for us to share on our After School Pinterest Board and feature an image on our After School Party in the upcoming weeks.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Learning about Air Pressure with a SUPER Long Drinking Straw


On Wednesday I shared a simple activity that only took two supplies. This little experiment is also light on the supplies, but heavy on the learning. 

I taught my boys about air pressure this week using drinking straws.


What You Need
Plastic drinking straws
Tape
Cup filled with beverage of choice

What to Do
My son took a drink of his milk using a straw and I asked him if it was hard to get the liquid up through the straw into his mouth.

"No. Why would it be?"

And so our experiment began. We took about 5 (or maybe six) plastic drinking straws and connected them together.

To do this, use scissors to cut a half inch slit in the end of a straw. Squeeze it slightly to narrow its neck, slip the end of another drinking straw over it. Push it together until there are no wrinkles in the straw. 



Use tape to seal the connection in the straws to ensure it's air tight.

Continue until you have a ridiculously long drinking straw.

Now place your cup on the floor. If your straw is too long to drink standing up above the cup, use a chair (but BE CAREFUL!). Try to hold the straw straight up.


Suck through the straw and try to drink your beverage. Easy or tough? Quick or slow? Little effort or LOTS of effort?

Vary the number of straws and see whether it's easier or harder. Experiment with the angle of the straw.


The Science
When you suck on a straw, air is removed. This difference is air pressure brings the liquid level inside the straw up, eventually moving it all the way up to your mouth so you can swallow a swig.

You've got to have some serious lung power to remove enough air from the straw to make the beverage rise through four straws, though.  

This experiment came from Science Buddies, on Scientific American's website. Stop there for further extensions of this activity and more explanation of the science behind it.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Transfer of Energy Marble Roll

This week and last week have been nuts. It's taken a massive amount of organization and a whole lot of crockpot dinners to keep us going. Despite the way our schedule has blown up, I'm still fitting in learning opportunities; it's a priority.

This one takes 5 minutes and uses two supplies: a wooden ruler and 3 (or more) glass marbles.


Don't let its simplicity fool you. This short science experiment packs a lot of educational punch.

Set it Up
Place one marble on the end of the ruler in its recessed middle.

Place two more marbles in the middle; make sure they touch.

Make a Hypothesis
What will happen when I flick the single marble and send it careening down the marble toward the other two? Will all the marbles rolls off the ruler?

Test Your Theory
Give the single marble a nudge and watch as it rolls down the ruler. When it hits the first marble, it stops. The energy from the marble is transferred through the second marble to the third marble, which suddenly begins rolling to the opposite end of the ruler. WOW!


This great experiment came from Frugal Fun 4 Boys. This blogger's child(ren) experimented with different numbers of marbles, flicking the single marble at as many as four marbles that were stationary in the middle of the ruler. Visit her blog to read about their findings!

Monday, October 12, 2015

After School Linky (10-12)

Welcome to the party!


Thanks for stopping by and Happy Monday!

Here are a handful of my favorite activities and ideas shared during last week's linky.
 Stained Glass Art Activity from Mosswood Connections

Counting Coins Scavenger Hunt at School Time Snippets

Homemade Wobblebot at Research Parent




Roll-A-Halloween Story from All Day Everyday Mom

The After School Linky is cohosted by
Relentlessly Fun, Deceptively Educational
We would love to have you link up your School-Age Post (Ages 5 and up) about your learning week after school including Crafts, Activities, Playtime and Adventures that you are doing to enrich your children's lives after their day at school, home school, or on the weekend!

When linking up, please take a moment to comment on at least one post linked up before yours and grab our after school button to include a link on your post or site! By linking up, you're giving permission for us to share on our After School Pinterest Board and feature an image on our After School Party in the upcoming weeks.


Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Sticky Ball Sight Word Target Toss

Each week of kindergarten, my son's class is working on two new sight words. I'm not wild about flash cards so I wanted to drum up another way for him to practice at home - something that would get my active boy up and moving, something that would be F-U-N.


This little game met all the criteria.

Supplies
Suction-cup balls from the party supply store
Target (download the one I made for free here)
Paper
Lamination (optional)
Markers (if laminated, use dry-erase)
Tape


Prep
Print and cut out as targets, one for every word you want to practice. If you'd like to reuse them (like I do), laminate each. With a marker (dry-erase on the laminated targets), write the sight word in the middle of your bulls eye target. Tape them to the sliding glass door so that each target is visible on the other side of the door. Your child will be reading the target through the glass.

Variation: Don't have a deck/porch with a sliding glass door, tape them to an interior wall and have your child use them as NERF gun sight word practice!

Play
Hand your child the suction-cup balls and call out the words on the targets. It's up to him/her to read the targets, take aim, and toss the ball. If he/she misses the whole target, they must try again and again until it is hit. 


Keep going until all the words have been called out! 

This is great way to make those sight words really stick in kids' brains!

Monday, October 5, 2015

After School Linky (10-5)

Welcome to the party!


There are so many good ideas shared here each week. Thanks to all who link-up, browse, pin, and follow.

Here are some of my favorites from last week's party.

Chemical Reactions with Pennies from Creative Family Fun





DIY Stethoscope at Tina's Dynamic Homeschool Plus

The After School Linky is cohosted by
Relentlessly Fun, Deceptively Educational
We would love to have you link up your School-Age Post (Ages 5 and up) about your learning week after school including Crafts, Activities, Playtime and Adventures that you are doing to enrich your children's lives after their day at school, home school, or on the weekend!

When linking up, please take a moment to comment on at least one post linked up before yours and grab our after school button to include a link on your post or site! By linking up, you're giving permission for us to share on our After School Pinterest Board and feature an image on our After School Party in the upcoming weeks.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Plate Tectonics on the Move {printable board game}


My fifth grade son is learning about the ice age this year in school. My goal is to always to piggy-back on what he's learning in school with some fun after school activities.

Since you can't learn about continental drift without a foundation of knowledge about plate tectonics, I thought a fun game on the topic of moving plates and the resulting land forms would be neat.


Prep
Download the three-page PDF of the game board and die free from Google Drive here. Print the PDF onto cardstock.

Since home printers won't print full-bleed (i.e. all the way to the edge of the paper), trim the white border from the two pages of the game board where they'll join. Tape in place.

Cut the die out. Score the lines for smooth folds with the back end of a butter knife. Fold and use a low-temp glue gun to assemble.


Grab two (or more depending on the number of players) different items to use as game pieces (e.g. buttons, coins, poker chips, LEGO minifigures, etc.). We used some full-body photos of ourselves that were laminated and put in large binder clips.

Play
Put the game pieces on the START. The youngest player rolls the die first. The player must determine what plate tectonic movement creates the land form or event that was rolled on the die. The game piece is moved to the first occurrence of that particular movement (convergent, divergent, or lateral). 


If the player rolls, "LOSE A TURN," the game piece remains where it is and the next player rolls. If the player rolls "ROLL & MOVE 2," they will move twice, to the next two movement types resulting from the land form rolled.

The player must roll the land form/event that puts them at the final square to win. The first player to arrive at the finish is declared the winner.

Read
Before my son played the game I made, he read a book that helped to explain concepts like oceanic and continental crust, the Earth's layers, and what happens when plate tectonics move. The comic book style of this book kept my son engaged from cover to cover!