Things are starting to get back into routine after a busy Holiday season and you feel like you’ve gotten caught up and then BOOM, January is gone! Seriously, where does the time go? It’s February and you’re suddenly hit with the realization that Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. February 14th may fall in the middle of the week this year, but that doesn’t mean the fun has to wait! Here are a couple easy and exciting projects YOU can do at home to bring STEM into your Valentine’s Day celebrations with the family!
Let’s start with Color Changing Flowers: In this super easy experiment all you need is some white flowers, gel food coloring, water, spoon, and a jar or vase. Simply drop a few dots of your favorite gel food coloring into a jar or vase of water while your helper stirs. Once the water has a vibrant hue, place one or two stems of flowers into the vase. Sit back and enjoy checking in on your flowers over the next day or so! You’ll be amazed to see the transformation. Want to have a rainbow of freshness? Choose a few different jars and colors to have a variety of beautiful blooms. What causes this to happen you ask? Well, this process is called “transpiration”. Transpiration occurs when the water is absorbed through the roots/stem of a plant and carried to the flower and then evaporated. While on its trip through the stem, the colored water will soak into the petals before the moisture is lost on the surface, leaving a beautiful hue behind.
Now, let’s Listen to your heart! – How to make a stethoscope.
Ever wondered why we draw a heart the way we do? Us adults all know that our heart in our bodies do not look exactly like the shape we draw when signing our names on cards, but do our kids know? Talk with them about how the organ looks similarly to the shape, but has so much more that makes it beat everyday!
What you’ll need for this Doctor in Training craft is an empty paper towel tube, small plastic funnel, duck tape. For this quick activity, help your child tape the small end of your plastic funnel into one end of the paper towel tube. Test out your stethoscope by gently placing the open funnel end on your chest while your helper holds their ear to the opposite end of the tube. Your child should be able to hear your heart beating! Ask your child what they think may happen to the speed of your heart if you run in place for 10 seconds? Give it a try! How does this work? Doctors use stethoscopes to listen to our hearts almost every time we go in for a check-up. A medically accurate stethoscope is made of a chest piece with a bell and diaphragm, flexible rubber tubing, and earpieces. The check piece takes your heartbeat and amplifies it so your doctor can easily hear how fast or slow your heart is beating. This is a great way for your doctor to help make sure you have a healthy and happy heart!