Tuesday, July 1, 2014

He Blinded Me With Science (Well, Covered Me With It, Actually)

Much to my son’s dismay, summer vacation has not meant leaving behind learning. Four days a week, we spend time polishing up his grammar, writing, and math skills. Once a week, I read him a history lesson (which I’m quite sure he’s ignoring). He does not enjoy it. I know because he loudly informs me of it each time we sit down at the dining room table with workbooks in hand.

However, one subject has maintained its luster for Kiddo. That subject is science. He’s head over heels for it, and for good reason: I’ve managed to make it fun.

Okay, so maybe it has not so much to do with me making it fun. The kits I bought are fun. We started off the summer with magnets and have moved on to rockets. Crystal making is in the future, as is soap making. Yes, the soap project is more for me than him. It has two-fold advantages; first off, pretty smelling soap. Second of all, it may convince my little unwashed beast that baths are a good thing.

Now that we’re well into our projects, it has come to my attention that soap making should have been our first venture. Heaven knows it would have come in handy many times over. Not so much because our science endeavors mean Kiddo is making a mess ... no, it’s actually his clumsy twit of a mother who is guilty of that.

First of all, magnets. This kit provided us two weeks of experimentation that included metal screws and paper clips ending up everywhere. My bright idea. “Look! The magnets magnetize other things. Look at the tower we can make with all this stuff.” The lesson was a success, but it meant small metallic objects have migrated all over the house. The vacuum cleaner is not pleased. It clanks quite loudly these days because it has found our work before we have.


You can see the attraction, right?
We also ended up with a flood in the kitchen. Demonstrating how magnets work underwater is thrilling and fun to my son. Mopping up the spills is a headache for me. Oh well, at least the floor was clean for an hour.

Then came shooting off a rocket in the back yard. Mom the Klutz strikes again. I simply cannot pour baking soda and vinegar neatly. At least Kiddo was delighted with our rocket’s drunken and less than spectacular flights. I think the greatest altitude we achieved was about ten feet. Note the kit's claim that it could soar up to 50. Ha! Not in my hands it won't. It's lucky it made it to the backyard without me falling and bashing it between me and the ground. My bodily coverage in ‘rocket fuel’ was much more impressive than the rocket's flight: I was coated in baking soda and vinegar from head to toe. Sign me up, NASA.


Yes, I am a rocket scientist...but apparently, not a very good one.
A child’s laughter lasts but just a few minutes. Yet the cleanup from making him laugh so hard lasts what feels like a lifetime. Science rocks, but it’s not for the fainthearted...or those who think vinegar reeks.

 Soap, anyone?


  1. Oh what fun, I miss the days with my kids and summer fun.
    I enjoy your blog, it always makes me smile and laugh my ass off. Anyway way to go mom, in making great memories and keeping your sons mind working all summer. Oh and you have years and years to clean but only a few FAST years with your son.

    1. Thanks! At this point I've just about given up on cleaning. I'm saving up for a bulldozer to shove the house and all our disasters to one side once I pack Kiddo off to college. We'll just build a nice, new clean one. Ten years isn't so long. And we are having a lot of fun, no matter how much griping I do. :D