Monday, July 21, 2014

Paleontology Rocks 2 Questions

We're excited to learn about paleontology this week!  You can check this blog to follow camp events, both at the museum and beyond.  Please be sure to check again on Friday for some photos from the week!

Here are some suggested questions for you to ask your camper this week:


On Monday, we will be learning about the geological time scale.
Ask me about our walk in the Diag!
Ask to see my geological time scale spiral!

On Tuesday, we will be learning about dinosaurs.
Ask me about the dinosaur I named!
Ask me what happened to all of the dinosaurs!

On Wednesday, we will be learning about fossils.
Ask my about my T. rex or Spinosaurus tooth cast!
Ask me how fossils are formed!

On Thursday, we will be learning about herbivores and carnivores.
Ask me about gastroliths (stomach stones)!
Ask me about dinosaur adaptations!

On Friday, we will be learning about life after the dinosaurs.
Ask me about my favorite Ice Age animal!
Ask me about the Mastodon extinction game!

Archaeology Quest 2 Questions

We're excited to learn about archaeology this week!  You can check this blog to follow camp events, both at the museum and beyond.  Please be sure to check again on Friday for some photos from the week!

Here are some suggested questions for you to ask your camper this week:


On Monday, we will learn about Ancient Civilizations.

Ask me about who made the first coins and ask to see mine.
Ask me about Aztec codices and ask to see mine.

On Tuesday, we will visit the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology to learn about Greek Mythology.

Ask me about our trip!

On Wednesday, we will learn about underwater archaeology.

Ask me about which shipwreck we explored.
Ask me about the boat I built.

On Thursday we will visit the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology to do our own archaeological dig.

Ask me about our trip!

On Friday, we will learn about what archaeologists do.

Ask me about how to read the landscape.
Ask me about our Archaeology obstacle course.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Paleontology Rocks 1

A beautiful Sauropod!
This week at Camp Explorations we learned all about paleontology.  From the beginning of Earth's history to dinosaurs and other prehistoric reptiles, we've discovered many new things!  On Monday, we learned all about one of our favorite topics: dinosaurs!  Campers learned how to distinguish between a dinosaur and other animals, how large dinosaurs actually were, and even got to make their own sauropods!  To top it all off, the groups dug through Styrofoam strata to find fossils and other objects.


Checking out some fossil footprints.
Tuesday was all about life before the dinosaurs.  We made paper timelines to represent the Earth's formation to now.  Ask to see your camper's timeline and note that much of life is very far from the beginning of Earth's history!  Groups also started working on their fossil artworks and saw real fossils from the Paleozoic era!

Some beautiful fossil art!
Making a timeline of the Earth!





























On Wednesday, we studied fossils. Campers learned how different fossils are formed and the importance of fossil footprints.  Ask your camper what can be learned from footprints!  We also played games to learn about how rare it is for something to actually become fossilized.

Learning how fossils are formed
Studying the footprints!  Ask what happened at this scene!
A Plesiosaur sighting!
On Thursday, we learned about other prehistoric reptiles.  Campers got another tour of the Museum's Prehistoric Life Exhibit to learn about other animals that lived during the time of the dinosaurs, but were not actually dinosaurs.  We watched clips of Dinosaur Train about Sanajeh (ask why the show is wrong about the pronunciation!) and Mosasaurus to learn even more about other reptiles.  The  groups finished up their fossil art pieces, as well as made Plesiosaur decorations.



The canoe is a popular place to journal
On Friday, the campers learned how real Paleontologists work with hands-on experience!  They sifted through a dig site and found their very own fossils!  We saw even more of the Prehistoric Life Exhibit and worked on scavenger hunts of the floors.  The groups worked together to answer some fun dinosaur trivia.  See if your camper can help you answer these questions!  The week was topped off by a very special visit from our friend Sarah the Triceratops!
Finding fossils!














The campers loved Sarah!
It's been a fun and exciting week!  We hope your campers enjoyed it as much as we did!  See you around the Museum!

Archaeology Quest Week 1

Checking out a real atlatl
Monday camp started with some basics of archaeology!  We learned what archaeologists do and what they study.  We had a real archaeologist come in and give a presentation first thing.  She showed us lots of cool artifacts and told us about her job here at the museum.  Then, we started on some archaeological endeavors of our own! We investigated an archaic campsite, getting to sift through soil to find the artifacts and bones left behind.  We then sorted them into a large matrix and organized them the way real archaeologists would.  We also learned about mastodons and the ancient humans that hunted them and got to make our own atlatls (an ancient spear throwing device).  We also put together pottery puzzles and tried to decipher the meaning behind their designs like the bowls and pottery of certain Native American tribes.  We even investigated some replica objects of ones found at the Historic Burnham House here on campus.  We studied how archaeologist label where they found their artifacts and then made inferences about the lives of the people who used them based on placement.

Sifting through the soil for artifacts

Getting our hands a little dirty



Tuesday, was our first trip to the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology!  We took a tour of the museum's exhibit on Egypt and got to ask lots of questions.  Then, we learned all about mummification.  We were able to go through the entire process of how the Egyptians prepared their mummies and learned about the significance of each process or artifact entombed with them.
Sacred scarab beetles that were placed over a mummy's heart

Djehutymose's coffin

Wednesday, campers learned even more about ancient Egypt.  Counselors gave a presentation on King Tutankhamen and the significance of the pyramid to the ancient Egyptians.  We then got an up close at the Great Pyramid of Giza and the Sphinx online and drew our own interpretations of these colossal architectural feats.  We also got to make our own steles (pronounced stee-lays), or ancient Egyptians version of a tombstone.  They are often found at the entrance of tombs and are covered in hieroglyphs talking about the person entombed there.  We played several games that taught us about Egyptian culture and we tested our memory from Tuesday by virtually embalming a mummy.

Drawing the Sphynx

Making a stele



Egyptian pull toys
Thursday, we took another trip to the Kelsey Museum of  Archaeology!  This time we learned about ancient toys and games and compared objects in both the ancient and modern worlds.  We had lots of fun playing board games from ancient civilizations like Egypt, Rome, and Mesopotamia.  Did you know kids in ancient cultures had yo-yos, noisemakers, dolls, rattles, and tops very similar to ours?  We went on a scavenger hunt in the exhibit gallery to find ancient objects and their modern counterparts, as well.




Example of and ancient doll made with fabric scraps


Friday, we learned about ancient art and forms of communication.  We had a presentation on petroglpyhs and pictographs in the morning where campers learned the difference between the two and the importance of storytelling through pictures.  Then we tried to unravel an ancient mystery by interpreting a a series of pictographs (ask your camper about what it represented).  We created our own stories and the paint with which to tell them by grinding reddish stones and mixing the powder with water and painting pictographs onto paper "rock walls".  Campers even got to create their own ancient art by designing a necklace with symbols that were important to them.  All in all, a super week with some super campers!

Practicing pictograms 


Making our medallions



Creating our own rock art

Monday, July 14, 2014

Paleontology Rocks 1 Questions

We are very excited about the upcoming week at camp!  Here are some questions you can ask your campers about after each day's session.

On Monday, we will be learning about dinosaurs.
Ask me the 4 rules for being a dinosaur!
Ask me how big dinosaurs were!

On Tuesday, we will be learning about the time before the dinosaurs.
Ask me about the Paleozoic fossils we saw!
Ask me about our walk through time!

On Wednesday, we will be learning about fossils.
Ask me about fossil track ways!
Ask me about how fossils form!

On Thursday, we will be learning about other prehistoric reptiles.
Ask me about Sanajeh the snake!
Ask me about my fossil art!

On Friday, we will be learning about paleontologists.
Ask me what fossils I found!
Ask me about dinosaur trivia!

Archaeology Week 1 Questions

We're excited to learn about archaeology this week!  You can check this blog to follow camp events, both at the museum and beyond.  Please be sure to check again on Friday for some photos from the week!

Here are some suggested questions for you to ask your camper this week!

On Monday, we will learn about what archaeology is and what an archaeologist does.

Ask me about he atlatl I made!
Ask me about the artifacts I found in an archaic campsite.

On Tuesday, we will be taking a trip to the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology to learn about mummies!

Ask me about our trip!

On Wednesday, we will learn about ancient Egypt.

Ask me about the stele I made!
Ask me about King Tut.

On Thursday, we will be taking a trup to the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology to learn about everyday objects in the ancient world.

Ask me about our trip!

On Friday, we will be learning about ancient art.

Ask me about my ancient art pendant!
Ask me about the difference between petroglyphs and pictographs.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Science Extravaganza 2

This has been another fun and exciting week at Camp Explorations!  For our second week of Science Extravaganza, we explored a different field of science every day!

On Monday, we studied paleontology. Campers learned how fossils are formed through permineralization and made their own trace fossils!  We also pretended to be paleontologists on the field and discovered a new type of prehistoric animal.  Ask your camper what kind they think it was!

Showing off her fabulous fossil!

Drawing themselves as paleontologists!



 Having fun with bubbles!
On Tuesday, we studied physical science and chemistry.  We explored acids and bases with cabbage juice, made our lunch bags explode, and created our own "gluep."  Campers also made their own bubble windows and wands and learned how bubbles are formed.  We added a special ingredient to make our bubbles strong: glycerin!  A mix of Dawn dish detergent and water works well, too!


We got some really big bubbles!

Ask your camper how the different ingredients affected the color of the cabbage juice.


Waiting for the lunch bag to explode...















Wednesday's theme was zoology.  We studied predator-prey relationships of animals and made our own food webs.  Campers were also able to dissect owl pellets and even played a fun version of freeze tag!

The counselors were preying upon our jackrabbit campers!

Discovering what owls eat.











Working out a food web.

The cycle is seed, sapling, mature tree, snag, rotting log.

On Thursday, we walked to the Nichols Arboretum to learn about trees.  Be sure to ask your camper what the different cycles of a tree's life cycle are!














We closed out the week with a day on water.  Campers learned about water pollution and where it gets cleaned and the importance of sharing this precious resource with everyone.  We also discovered that the majority of our planet is made of water through several activities.

Sharing our common water.

The world is largely water!

















It's been another successful and fun week at Camp Explorations.  We hope your campers had a great time as well!  See you around the Museum!