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Outdoor Science Activities-The New York Times

If you like to see patterns of trees, bark and veins, if you are fascinated by the spots on the back of clouds and ladybugs. If you want to break a rock and see what’s inside, you’re already an outdoor scientist. The best part is that you don’t need any special or flashy equipment and you don’t even have to remember the charger. All you need is your eyes and observing power.

Do you have one or two sets of footprints in the snow? Can three or four kinds of birds talk in the woods? Which plants are strong enough to pierce the sidewalk? These are questions that outdoor scientists ask about the world, although not always the answer.

As summer approaches Here are 5 projects and experiments Guide you on a scientific journey into the natural world.

One way crystals are formed is when magma, the liquid rock, begins to cool. Crystals of various types and colors can be formed depending on the temperature of the liquid and the time it takes for it to cool. This is the same process as a snowflake, also known as a snowflake. If the water and salt solution is left at room temperature overnight, the crystals can be observed up close. The water evaporates and the salt crystallizes.

1. Put water in a pot and bring to a boil (adults can help if you can’t use the stove yourself).

2. Add salt and stir until no longer dissolves. A few grains of salt are swirling and the water should look almost transparent (that is, you have added slightly more salt than the water can absorb).

3. Transfer the solution to the jar.

4. If you want to make colored crystals, add a few drops of food coloring.

5. Tie one end of the string to the center of the pencil and lower the other end of the string into the jar. The length of the string should be long enough to touch the bottom of the bottle.

6. Place the pencil on top of the jar.

7. Crystals begin to form in 1-2 days.

Both dogs and humans go back to the old days. Dogs evolved from wolves, just as we evolved from primates. Dogs were the first animals to live with humans. We call this domestication.This is how wild animals Become a hairy friend watching Netflix next to us on the couch.

There are more than 300 breeds today, but even after thousands of years of evolution, the paws of dogs and wolves are so similar that they cannot really be distinguished.

You will need:

  • 4 cups of plaster in Paris

  • 2 cups of cold tap water

Instructions:

WARNING: Do not completely immerse your hands or pet’s forefoot in Parisian plaster. Remove quickly while still damp. Stucco in Paris gets hot when it dries and I don’t want to get caught.

1. Spread the newspaper on the workbench.

2. Place plaster paris and water in a plastic container and use a mixing spoon to stir well until the pancake dough is firm.

3. Pour the mixture into an aluminum cake pan and smooth with a spatula. Let it rest for an hour to harden.

4. Place the dog’s forefoot (or other animal’s forefoot / foot) on the mixture and push it down 1/2 to 3/4 inch. Placing the plaster in the Paris container on the table and placing the dog on his lap will make the dog more supportive. Remove the dog’s paw and rinse well.

5. Dry the plaster in Paris for 24 hours to make a life-size souvenir of your pet’s forefoot.

Note: If you do not have livestock or outdoor animals, you can always use human “paws”.

As you know, you can tell the age of a tree by counting the annual rings of the tree, but each ring actually consists of two parts. A year is represented by a combination of a bright band of tissue layers called the cambium and a thin, dark band of cambium. Light-colored bands show growth between warm and rainy months and good growth conditions. Dark bands show growth in cold months and difficult conditions.

The tree grows outward. That is, the center of the tree is the oldest part and the outer ring is the newest part. The central core, or heartwood, is the strongest wood in the tree, even if it is not alive.

Since the record of human daily weather conditions only goes back to this point, Trees serve as a useful tool for scientists studying climate change. Trees often live for hundreds of years and tell us the weather conditions long before humans begin tracking.

You will need:

For more information on tree growth, see How Old Is My Tree ?. You can find it at purduelandscapereport.org by Lindsay Purcell.

Instructions:

1. With a cloth tape measure, measure the perimeter (distance around) of the tree approximately 4.5 feet from the ground.

2. Using a calculator, divide that number by 3.14 (that is, approximately pi).

3. Multiply that number by the “growth factor” of the tree. The “growth factor” is an average estimate of the growth of a tree species over time. The International Society of Arboriculture publishes a table of growth factor numbers by tree species. You’ll need to do a Google search or a tree guide to complete the formula for measuring trees.

4. The result is the age of your tree. For example, silver maple has a circumference of 20 inches, which is divided by 3.14 to get 6.369. Multiply this by growth factor (3) to get 19.108. This means that your tree is about 19 years old.

The night sky has always been important to humankind, primarily as a navigation tool.

Today, starry sky observation is not as easy as it used to be. The main cause is light pollution. When thinking about pollution, we tend to focus on: Water and air pollution directly affects what we drink and breathe. However, light pollution has long hindered the ability to see the night sky in cities and suburbs.

Exciting citizen science projects that you can participate in include filming the night sky from where you live and sharing it with people around the world to track light pollution.To participate, please visit our website Globe at Night..

You will need:

Instructions:

1. Measure around the flashlight lens with a drawing compass. Copy the readings on cardboard with a pencil.

2. Cut out some circles for different constellations. These should fit snugly over the lens and inside the flashlight rim (if the flashlight has no rim, you can tape it in place). A pencil eraser that pulls a circle out of the edge of a flashlight.

3. Look for images of constellations in books on the internet and astronomy.

4. Use a pencil to mark a dot in a circle that looks like an image of a constellation.

5. Use the tip of scissors to make a hole in the point.

6. Insert an optical disc on top of the flashlight. Turn on the flashlight in a dark room to illuminate an empty wall or ceiling. Enjoy the constellations!

Birds need four basic things: food, water, shelter, and egg-laying grounds. The most common backyard bird diet in North America, including the goldfinch, blue jay, American robin, hummingbird, cardinal, and sparrow, consists of nuts, seeds, fruits, and nectar. Osprey, a large coastal bird, loves fish and jumps into the water to scoop fish. Top of the food chain: frogs like herons, reptiles like honeybees, hawks eat other birds, rod teeth and owls like vultures eat everything, including street killings.

You will need:

  • string

  • Pine cones (If you don’t live near pine trees, you can buy pine cones at your local craft store)

  • Bird seeds (available at grocery stores and pet stores)

  • plate

  • honey

  • Butter knife (not required)

  • Branches or other places to hang the feeder

Instructions:

1. Tie a string to the top of the pine cone so that you can hang it later.

Pour about an inch of bird seeds into the dish enough to make the pine cones round.

3. Drop honey on the pine cones. (Do this on a plate to catch the honey dripping from the pine cones.)

4. When the pine cones are covered with honey, roll them on a plate until covered in bird seeds. You need to use a butter knife to get into every corner.

5. Hang a pine cone on a branch and leave a safe distance to observe the birds coming to eat.

From “The Outdoor Scientist” by Dr. Temple Grandin, published by Philomel Books, the publisher of the Penguin Young Readers Group, a division of Penguin Random House, LLC. Copyright © 2021 Temple Grandin.

Outdoor Science Activities-The New York Times

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