Don’t Be Dense!

Wednesday, April 15th, 2015 – written by STEM Facilitator, Nedum Aniemeka
DSC_0120 This week at Woodson, the girls of Sisters4Science got a visit from Ms. Bori Kim, one of Project Exploration’s STEM Facilitators! Bori has done many experiments with Sisters4Science programs at other Chicago Public Schools so it was great to see her again at Woodson! For the activity of the day, Bori facilitated her super fun experiment on density! For this experiment, the girls were given corn syrup, vegetable oil, water, cashews, a candle, and milk and asked which ones they thought would sinkApril 15 - 14 furthest to the bottom. By using guess and check and what the girls knew about density, the girls were able to test which materials they thought would float in water and which ones they thought would sink. Stephanee guessed that the candle, despite being the biggest object, would float to the top because it has such a large surface area. Looks like someone’s been paying attention in geometry! The girls had fun messing with all of the materials and were even able to add food coloring to make their creations even more exciting!
To have a bit of a brain break, the girls played a round of my favorite game, Ninja! Because some the girls had never played the game before, we had a bit of a rough start. DSC_0109However, they quickly got the hang of it and soon enough girls were jerking and karate chopping all over the place. In the end, Rachel became one of our Ninja champions for the day. That’s basically as good as a black belt!
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Float On!

Tuesday, March 10, 2015 – written by Nedum Aniemeka, STEM Facilitator
March 10 - 1 Today at S4S the girls learned about density! Ms. Bori Kim, a Project Exploration STEM Facilitator, came in again today to lead an experiment about scientific observations and predictions. The girls were given 5 different objects – a candle, cashews, whipping cream, water, and corn syrup, and were asked which items they thought would sink to the bottom. First, the girls looked, touched, and tasted the items. Then they made their predictions by taking index cards of the materials and stacking the cards based on what layers they thought would form. The experiment got a little messy, but the girls loved it! They even got to put food coloring in their water to make the mixture more interesting. Nyssa said that the mixture looked like layers of sand in the glass! At the end of the experiment the girls were all asked to take pictures of their mixtures and send their best one for a photo contest. We got March 10 - 3some pretty creative filters as a result!
For a physical activity, the girls engaged in a game of Mix it Up! For the first round, Kiara started us off by doing a dance move that we all had to copy. Then we moved around the circle until each girl had contributed a dance move to the sequence. By the end of it we had a 10-dance move sequence! Antimia even added her own little flair and made the dance a little funky. The girls are natural dancers!

Lava Lamps and Floating Paper Clips!

Written by our STEM Facilitator, Eugenia Ruiz:
Feb 13 - 9 Feb 13 - 11
Friday the 13th has finally arrived. Yet, the girls have science on their minds. This session, another of one of Project Exploration’s STEM facilitators, Ms. Bori Kim, came to join our program. The girls had so much fun with her! She brought two small activities for the girls to enjoy. The first activity was based on the girls’ values. She brought in several tiny pieces of papers with different values on them. The girls were to go to Feb 13 - 5each table around the room and choose six values that were important to them. They were then to write down the values in their journals and put why they were important to them. It was great to see the girls express themselves freely about what they valued. It was amazing to watch them all be happy with the ones that they chose.
Then we followed the activity with an experiment: the floating paper clip. The supplies needed for the experiment were: a bowl with water, a paper clip, and tissue paper. The girls placed the paper clip in the water and watched it sink. Then they placed the tissue paper on the water and gently placed the paper clip on the tissue paper. The girls were in shock as they saw the paper clips floating! It was so cool!
For a little brain break, Ms. Bori had thegirls do some diaphragmatic breathing. Feb 13 - 7It helped clear their minds and help them relax a little bit. The second experiment was the ‘Lava Lamps’. Last time we did the lava lamp in a cup with salt. This time the girls used: empty water bottles, water, food coloring, oil, and alka seltzer tablets. I wanted the girls to see different reactions from the salt and the alka seltzer. It was fun to see how they thought the water bottle lava lamps were much cooler.
Overall, we had an amazing session. The girls are looking forward to having a scientist next week. Happy Valentine’s Day to you all!

Don’t Touch the Lava!

Written by our STEM Facilitator, Nedum Aniemeka:
Feb 10 - 4 On February 10th, 2015 at Ariel Community Academy’s Sisters4Science session, we had a guest scientist from our very own staff come and work with the girls! Ms. Bori Kim, who’s currently studying to become a science teacher at North Park University, came in and did a really fun activity with the girls about lava! First, Bori asked the girls what they already knew about lava and the girls all knew that it’s the hot substance that comes out of a volcano when it erupts. Kiara even told us that cooled lava can turn into rocks. Furthermore, Alanah told us about the types of volcanoes that exist in the world – either dormant or active!
To do the activity, the girls combined cooking oil, water, and food color to make cups of lava. Then they added salt to their cups to simulate what it looks like when lava bursts from a volcano. The activity was super fun and the girls even took videos of their cups so they could playback what it looked like when the lava “exploded.”
After the experiment, we did a breathing exercise to get the girls up and moving! Bori introduced the girls to the idea of breathing from the diaphragm, which is a Feb 10 - 3technique that’s used when meditating. Nyssa said “breathing like that made her feel really calm” and she would make sure to use that technique next time she feels herself getting angry. Sounds like a good idea, Nyssa!
Finally, the girls closed off the day talking about the things in their life that they hold most valuable. All of the girls had amazing things to say about their friends, family, and school! Antimia also said that she valued her style. We’ve got a resident diva on our hands! Until next time!