8 SCIENCE PROJECTS KIDS WILL LOVE

Search on the words “8 YouTube Science Projects Kids Will Love” for some neat stuff.

One is called “Milk into Stone: Life in Plastic, It’s Fantastic.” It shows you how ordinary milk and vinegar can be poured into a cookie cutter or other mold. After a couple of days it’s as hard as stone.

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EVERYDAY CHEMISTRY

“Reactions: Everyday Chemistry” Search on those words to find a fun YouTube video series with topics like: “Why does bacon smell so good?” or “Accidental Discoveries that Changed the World” – like turning tar into dyes and sweeteners.

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ROACH AND RESCUE

Search and rescue dogs are fine for finding trapped victims but cockroaches can go anywhere – unfortunately.

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FOLLOWING CONSTELLATIONS

Heavens-above.com follows satellites and constellations. There are many dozens of satellites in orbit around the Earth and this will tell you which is which, and where. There’s even a satellite for amateur radio operators. Also has information on stars and constellations.

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FASCINATING SCIENCE BITS

IFLscience.com has fascinating bits, including “21 GIFs that explain mathematical concepts.” For instance, did you know that the number Pi (3.14159 etc.), is equal to the distance traveled by rolling a wheel exactly one revolution? That distance turns (ha, ha) out to be 3.14 times the diameter. This is true no matter what size the wheel.

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THIN-FILM SOLAR CELLS

Making solar cells can get expensive. What if you could just stick them on, or perhaps even spay them on?

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VACCINES, CALLING THE SHOTS

PBS.org/Nova has all the TV episodes from the science program NOVA, the day after they air. “Vaccines, calling the Shots” takes you around the world to look at epidemics – particularly appropriate these days. “Rise of the Hackers” finds the super sleuths who decode the world’s most sophisticated cyber weapons.

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NEON FLAMES

“Neon flames” lets you design your own nebulae. Choose a color from the palette on the left and start moving your mouse cursor across a black sky. The color deepens if you move over and over the same section. The effect looks remarkably like a real star cluster. This is also available as an Android app.

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CITIZEN SCIENCE

We recently watched a NOVA science show about a guy who created a game that lets people from all over the world help find solutions to cancerous growths and viral infections. The solutions were tested in the lab, and when they didn’t work, people went back to their computers and found others that did work.

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HELP

While you’re up, how about solving a problem or two? “World Community Grid” is a free program that harnesses the power of linking thousands of computers to solve problems. (We are proud to say we first suggested doing this in a column written more than thirty years ago.)

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David Haybron