Learning doesn’t stop just because it’s winter break. Actually, it gives us a little freedom to learn without time limits. We spent our day after Christmas mostly relaxing, but we also threw in a couple of educational activities that were super fun.
Santa brought my son a Magic School Bus science kit, the Slime and Polymer Lab. This school bus-shaped box comes packed with experiment cards and most of the things you’ll need to complete the experiments, plus a data notebook. The fun format is easy for kids to use and we had a blast. We made slime out of glue and borax, then turned it into a bouncy ball. If you have this kit, or plan on getting it, one note: the instructions for this experiment say to use warm water to dissolve the Borax. Our warm water didn’t quite do the trick so I recommend using hot water instead to achieve a better result.
In the afternoon we headed to the Heritage Museum of Orange County and took a tour of the Kellogg House. The tour is supposed to be self guided, but the docent at the house today was so informative. He told the kids about the history of the home owner and his travels to Hawaii and that the house was built to resemble a ship, complete with a ships mast rising through the center of the house with a staircase spiraling around it. The dining room was built in an oval shape to resemble the captains quarters of a boat he traveled on and the flooring was even designed to resemble the ship’s deck. We talked about washing clothes, insulating with adobe bricks, using glass prisms in the flooring of a porch to provide natural light to the basement below, and what it was like for children in school 100 years ago. Oh, and we played a game of pickup sticks, listened to Christmas songs on a victrola, and played a tune on the pump organ.
After our awesome tour, we explored the grounds to see a few other buildings from the era and took a short nature walk. Do you add learning adventures to your vacations? What are you up to this winter? Please share with us!