FrankenCreatures!

2018-11-25T19:40:54-07:00

Who among us hasn't at some point just put out a bunch of materials and told the kids "have at it!"? We did that in our STREAM Center for a pre-Halloween program, and it was way more fun that we anticipated! There were a large number of the parents who stayed with their kids and created right along with them, even though their attendance wasn't strictly mandatory at the program. We had a wide range of materials, from paper tubes to wiggle eyes. We had access to tape and glue, along with rubber bands, paper clips, and binder clips. There were [...]

FrankenCreatures!2018-11-25T19:40:54-07:00

Lessons Learned from Camp Cosmos

2018-11-19T21:28:33-07:00

            How do you decide if an event is a success? Usually the number of people in attendance is a good indicator, and one that the state wants us to report. But what if you only have three people from your intended audience attend? Can you still call that a successful event? To celebrate the end of World Space Week in October, we held Camp Cosmos at one of the local parks. We had paper rockets launched by compressed air, made space packs, offered "moon sand" to play in, made galaxy art, and more. It was a [...]

Lessons Learned from Camp Cosmos2018-11-19T21:28:33-07:00

Light and Color and Uncooperative Weather

2018-06-19T04:05:06-06:00

The best-laid plans often go awry...  so how to program on the fly for a large group when that happens? My Monday Mayhem program is attended by a lot of school-age kids, including those who attend two separate day care summer camps. Planning for 80 takes some work and means that it is difficult to change activities without some advance thought and materials-gathering. As such, I learned a valuable lesson last week about planning... always have a back-up if the activities rely on the sun. The theme for the program last week was Light and Color, and while I had a [...]

Light and Color and Uncooperative Weather2018-06-19T04:05:06-06:00

Have Fun With an Ancient Instrument – a Mouth Bow

2018-03-02T16:58:58-07:00

The first time I encountered a mouth bow was at Girl Scout camp many (I'm not about to tell you how many) years ago.  It was a camporee weekend, packed full of activities and workshops for us t'weens and teens.  One of the workshops was musical instruments from things we could find in the forest, mostly.  The most popular of the instruments we learned to make was the mouth bow.  By the end of the weekend, nearly everyone had one, and most of us had learned to pluck out a tune or two on them.  What's more, we didn't need to label [...]

Have Fun With an Ancient Instrument – a Mouth Bow2018-03-02T16:58:58-07:00

Paper Spheres: Experimentation with Decoration

2017-12-28T21:50:11-07:00

Leading up to the holidays, people are often busy buying gifts and decorating their homes.  So, this year, I decided to offer different decorative crafts each week in December.  One of the most popular was the paper spheres.  The craft is simple to do, and only requires strips of paper, a hole punch, and brads (or bent paper clips) to complete.  Being simple in its execution allows for crafters to put their focus on creativity and originality.  They can also make more at home themselves, or as a family activity of they so choose, with a short list of easy to [...]

Paper Spheres: Experimentation with Decoration2017-12-28T21:50:11-07:00

Money Fun

2017-11-29T19:51:12-07:00

        This month there is an exhibit in the adult collection about money and managing finances.  I've decided to focus my children's programming around money, and money fun, while the exhibit is on display.  It'll be a good opportunity to educate kids about being responsible with their money in a fun way, while the adults have the opportunity to learn about the same thing, through a more mature, if less entertaining method.  I'm planning on teaching several simple money "magic" tricks, since it always seems like money disappears, practically magically, no matter how hard you try to keep up with [...]

Money Fun2017-11-29T19:51:12-07:00

The Dirt on Soil

2017-07-15T06:38:52-06:00

This week at the Depot Park, we braved threatening thunderstorms, rain, and high humidity to learn the dirt on soils! Using both fiction and non-fictions books, we introduced the topics of soil, dirt, and mud before studying different types of soil, modeling the concept of percolation, making model soil horizons, and mud painting. Over the two days of the program, we introduced the theme with the books Mud Puddle, by Robert Munsch, and Miracle Mud: Lena Blackburne and the Secret Mud that Changed Baseball, by David A. Kelly. Both adults and kids were astonished to learn that the miracle mud of the story is [...]

The Dirt on Soil2017-07-15T06:38:52-06:00

International Peace Crane Swap and a 1000 Cranes From Around the World

2017-04-26T19:00:28-06:00

      I know International Peace Day seems like a long way off, but when you're planning to string 1000 cranes contributed from folders all over the world to display in locations equally as diverse, you can never start too early. The United Nation's International Day of Peace is every September 21.  This year, in recognition of the holiday, the International Peace Crane Project is planning a travelling exhibit of 1000 cranes to promote peace among the peoples and cultures of the world.  Each crane in the display will come from a different part of the world.  People everywhere have [...]

International Peace Crane Swap and a 1000 Cranes From Around the World2017-04-26T19:00:28-06:00

3-D Origami – The Fun of Legos on a Much Smaller Budget

2016-08-06T16:18:05-06:00

Fate is a funny thing.  A few months ago I got ambitious one week, and wrote and published ( I thought) three blog articles.  Unbeknownst to me, it was the same week that the STAR_Net blog was being moved to its new home on this website.  For some reason, one of my articles made the move.  The other two disappeared into the ether.  I could have taken this experience as a reminder to always back up my work on at least one flash drive.  Instead, I decided it was the universe giving me the opportunity to work harder on my article. [...]

3-D Origami – The Fun of Legos on a Much Smaller Budget2016-08-06T16:18:05-06:00

Want to Be a Stellar Artist? Send Your Creative Arts Into Space

2016-02-19T19:20:21-07:00

I received this opportunity from Andrew Shaner of The Center for Lunar Science and Exploration: (This could be a great opportunity for a arts and science program for pre-schoolers, school-aged kids, and/or families.)   February 19, 2016 RELEASE 16-019 NASA Invites Public to Send Artwork to an Asteroid NASA is calling all space enthusiasts to send their artistic endeavors on a journey aboard NASA’s Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) spacecraft. This will be the first U.S. mission to collect a sample of an asteroid and return it to Earth for study. OSIRIS-REx is scheduled to launch in September [...]

Want to Be a Stellar Artist? Send Your Creative Arts Into Space2016-02-19T19:20:21-07:00
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