To follow up yesterday’s post, I love that my boys are as interested in science as I am. Though these days I rarely find myself compelled to do actual scientific experiments, I do still enjoy watching shows like PBS’s “Sid The Science Kid“, “Bill Nye the Science Guy” and “Beakman’s World” with the kiddos. (Yes, these shows are available instantly on Netflix, and if you haven’t taken the time to get Netflix, please do. Best $10/month investment, ever.) When I’m busy trying to clean, or take care of other adult chores, it’s nice to put such entertaining but secretly educational videos on for the kids and know that they are in good hands while I busy about. But on some days, watching shows about science is simply not enough. And some days, there are simply too many chores to get started. Today was one of those days, and when I got home from work, I didn’t know where to begin. And while I was overwhelmed, it did occur to me that life is nothing more than a great balancing act! And… I was inspired.
I set about the house grabbing some simple supplies. Standard clothes hanger, clothes pins, pipe cleaners, the boys, some small toys, a couple of old lanyards that I used to keep my name tag on at work… And, I built a homemade balance. The boys helped me conduct a science experiment.
We laid out the items we collected, and asked two questions:
1. Which item is the heaviest?
2. Which item is the lightest?
We made our guesses. Of Ben’s items, he guessed that his Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle would be the heaviest, and the green feather would be the lightest. (The red bow and the Chick Hicks matchbox car would be somewhere in between.) Jake guessed that his shoe would weigh more than Ben’s Ninja Turtle. We set about working to prove or disprove our hypothesis.
We carefully pinned our toys on the balance, and observed which item tipped the balance closer to the floor, proving that it was heavier. (And I silently prayed that the light fixture I hung this balance off of would hold tight to the ceiling while we did so. Thankfully, it did.)
And then it was Jake’s turn!
And sure enough, the shoe was heavier than the Ben’s Ninja Turtle!
Ultimately, I think that we learned a few scientific principals and got some great practice at science and reasoning. Of course there were chores that should’ve been done (as evidenced by the amount of junk on the counters in the background of these pictures), but it will still be there tomorrow. The most important lesson learned, perhaps, is that life itself is a great balancing act!