Thursday, November 27, 2008

Week Fourteen - Rocks

Tell your kids to collect 7 rocks. Don't tell them why. Just tell them that they should be bigger than 2 inches and different sizes and shapess. When they come back, have them stack the rocks as high as possible. As always, send your pics.

When they are done, show them this and this.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Heavenly Hats

I am on vacation, so I apologize but I may be slow to post this week. Don't worry though, I'll post everyone's submissions sooner or later. You all have done a wonderful job! And, if you have time, I have added some pics to the apple challenge from a homeschool co-op. Go back and check them out.

For starters, Beth made an absolutely awesome hat!

Selena made a marvelous hat!

Bennet made another awesome pirate hat!

Jack made a cool cowboy hat!

Jesse made a terrific top hat!

Josephine made a cool cone hat!

Steven made a fabulous peter pan hat!

Alessia, Tyler, and Nik made some heavenly hats!

Moomintroll made a fantastic fez!

Snufkin made a beau chapeau.

Explore Academy and family made hats on Thanksgiving day. Gram and Papa even made some!

Tolly, Levi, and Cal also joined in the fun and made some spectacular hats. You can read more about them here.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

American Thanksgiving Challenge -- Hats

Pretend you are going out to dinner at Grandma's (for Thanksgiving if you celebrate it or for a special occasion if you don't). Grandma is old fashioned and you must wear a hat to Grandma's!

Put 3 sheets of newspaper on the table. And, a large roll of masking tape. Tell your students (and guests if you decide to try this ON Thankskgiving) to make a hat. Model it and photograph it. Send us your pictures.

Then, check out these.

I'll begin posting solutions on Monday and will take them indefinitely. I encourage folks to get the solutions in within 9 days so that others can see them but I will always post them. If you find yourself with extra time and you decide to go back to do an old challenge, please send in the pics. And, if you try it with a school group, homeschool co-op, church group, etc. please send those pics too! The more the merrier and we can all learn from each other!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Week Twelve -- Wild Windmillls

I have posted another ongoing challenge in the right hand column. Also, to facilitate participation from the other side of the globe, I am going to start posting challenges on Thursday evenings. Deadline for returning the weekly solutions will still be Saturdays at noon. There will be a little overlap but I think it'll work! Look for solutions to begin posting on Mondays.

And, check out this story!

Jaylene did a great job with her windmill. She was able to look at another that she had made and figure out how to use the new materials. Great job Jaylene!

K also did an awesome job! Here's a picture and a video. FAN-tastic work K.

Snufkin made her windmill from one piece of paper by cutting, folding, holding the sails with paper clips and then sewing a little button in the center. You should be proud of your design! Excellent job!

Moomintroll began his by making two circles and some little oval sails slotted together using paper clips. These were stitched into place between the two circles. Moomintroll straightened a paper clip, pushed the paper clip through the button, bent it ninety degrees, wrapped paper around the tip of the paper-clip before wedging the end into the straw. Again, an awesome design strategy! Fantastic work! Check out his video by clicking here.

Tyler, Alessia, and Nik had another creative design! Their's looks like a good old-fashioned windmill! Great job guys! You should be proud.

Jackson joined us this week for the first time and did an amazing job with his windmill! Check it out!

Cal and Levi worked very hard to create some wild windmills! You guys should be proud -- you did a great job!

Natalie sent in another wild windmill! Yet another design! Great thinking!

Alex and Charlie got a bit of help from their Dad this week! Both windmills turned when they blew on them but their mom says that the windmill that Dad helped with worked better. Awesome job guys!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Week Twelve -- Windmills

Make a windmilll using the following materials. Test it outside or with a blow dryer. Send pics or video!

2 pieces of paper
2 straws or pencils
1 button
6 inches of thread or string

You may use a ruler, a needle and scissors during construction but not in the solution.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Week Eleven - Cool Catalog Creations

We've gotten some great solutions already! But, judging on the number submitted so far, I am guessing that some of you think this is a hard one. One suggestion if you are struggling is to think about what you can do with paper and what some of the strongest structures are. Maybe you just don't get as much junk mail as we do!

First, Snufkin and Moomintroll sent their solutions in. Snufkin used a very very thick Argos catalogue. Ambitiously choosing the thickest tome, she made double triangular folded paper 'columns' tied with more catalogue paper. She used the catalogue as a base for those crucial extra inches, and then used the thicker catalogue cover papers as 'floors' on which to place her next layer of columns.Superb work!

Moomintroll hit upon the idea of making 'bricks' out of origami boxes. He folded each piece of paper diagonally and then trimed the extra rectangle off using the catalogue itself instead of a ruler to tear against.When he had a perfect square, he could make his origami boxes. The Tesco catalogue has a thousand pages. Moomintroll made the boxes at a rate of ten a day and so estimated that he could make a really massive structure in about one hundred days! This one with fourteen boxes is ten and 1/4 inches high. Fantasic job!

Taylor made his tower from a thin Craftsman Tools catalog/flyer that came in the mail. It was 17” tall, 25” long, and 23” deep. Awesome job Taylor!

Jacob participated for the first time this week. He created this cool tower!

Shamus also joined us for the first time. His tower is also very cool!

Susie created another fantabulous tower.

Ellen created a tremendous tower.

Laura built a fantastic tower. Thanks for joining us!

Lacy and Jordan joined us this week for the first time and they did a great job! Both made structures out of crumpled balls of paper. Joanna and her mom made a structure out of twisted pages layered criss-cross. Congratulations on a job well done!

Here is Lucas, age 9, with his cone constructed tower It's awesome!

H and T created several cool towers. Some were wider, others taller. Great job girls!

The first tower by Josh and Jacob was crumpled pages put in a pile....didn't hold very well. SOOOOO.......Mungi, their grandma told them that, when she was young, her family didn't have money for staples so they tore little "flaps" to hold paper together. She showed them how to make the blocks and then use the "flaps" to hold them together. Then they discovered that since we had so much crumpled paper we could put a ball of paper in the block and it would be sturdier. Awesome job guys!

Andy and Will did an awesome job this week! You guys used some cool construction techniques! Great work.

Selena built Stripey's tower, Stripey's small tower and Stripey's Flower Tower. Very very cool Stripey towers!

Instead of building a tower this week, Alex and Charlie went back and completed the week 9 challenge. Go back and check out their apple sculptures. They did a great job! Also, I just added Selena'a xylophone to the Halloween challenge. It's awesome!

Monkeet made an awesome tower from boxes and columns. He had paper boxes like bricks at first and then realized he could get columns to actually stay in place if they were resting inside the paper box instead of just on top of the box. Great job!