Monday, April 16, 2018

Maryland Science Center April 2018

We took advantage of our annual membership to the Maryland Science Center to visit over the Easter holiday. Some sections were still unexplored by us and the center has plenty of roving/spontaneous exhibits for our enjoyment and education.

The first thing we saw was one of the spontaneous exhibits--a collection of skulls. My prescholar was interested. The guy showed us a human skull and a chimpanzee skull among others.

A skull exhibit

Another nearby skull

On our way upstairs to the Science & Main exhibit, we discovered another spontaneous bit of science. This one was a number location guessing game. The green cups hid numbers in ascending order. The kids had to guess where a specific number was. After picking one cup, it's easier to make an educated guess where the number might be (higher or lower, unless the right number is picked first).

I was worried there was a pea under one cup

My daughter zeroes in on eighty-two

Three-cup problem for the under-five customers

Three-cup solution

Nearby in the Science & Main exhibit, we tried having a balanced meal using trays on pivots! Our youngest son's idea of a balanced meal is to have a bit of everything.

Learning to balance

The music and sound exhibits showed us how an organ works as well as what sound waves look like.

Trying out a small organ

Longest keys ever?

Making sound waves

The foam block construction area had all sorts of challenges posted on the wall. My oldest son thought this was some sort of area control game. He made a long, short fence.

Great Wall of China II?

Other projects started

My daughter started building a house for herself.

Precision craftsmanship

Nearby was a display on making paper airplanes along with a machine to throw them into the air. Sadly, we didn't get good pictures or video of the planes flying, though they were quite impressive. You'll just have to go try it out for yourself.

How to fold a paper airplane (at least, one model)

Another exhibit demonstrated how balls bounce on different surfaces (carpet, foam, and hard plastic) with different angles to get different trajectories. The boys loved this and probably would have spent the whole day at this one station.

The joy of bouncing

The cups guy came over and announced another spontaneous science demonstration downstairs. I took a look from up above.

More science going on

The kids finished up their building projects, including chairs.

An easy chair made by my son

House with furniture

Working on a roof

Cosy inside

No visit is complete without experiencing Newton's Alley. My daughter tried out the can crusher, which slowly depresses a trash can with every crank of a small wheel.

Adding a couple of turns

The can getting crushed

Upstairs, our toddler was fascinated by this display that made sounds of digestion, which includes everything from chewing to elimination. It was a bit gross but he is a boy, after all.

At least it doesn't provide smells

The other children were busy trying out a display with mirrors. I never got a close enough look to see what it was all about.

Mirrors make science fun

We tried out the "put a skeleton together" as a nice ending to a trip that started with a bunch of skulls.

From skull to skeleton

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