Zoom meetings will be at 2 pm on Wednesdays. This will be the meeting id all upcoming STEAM meetings if it happens to change we will let you know in advance. Meeting ID # 874 4889 0214

STEAM week 4:

 

Twisting cord:

This will be easiest starting with materials that do not have any twist to them.  Raffia will be easier to start with than multiple stranded string but is very possible to use either.

Start by folding one long piece of raffia in half.  Pinch the loop as big or small as you want it in your non-dominant hand.  Use your dominant hand to do the twisting.  Start with the piece closest to you.  Roll it between your thumb and first finger toward you.  Then flip it over the other piece away from you.  Move your thumb holding the loop down a little bit to keep the piece you flipped over in place.  Start again with the piece now closest to you.  Roll it between your thumb and first finger toward you and flip it over the other piece away from you.  You want to create the twist on each individual strand in the opposite direction of the twist of the finished cord.  The opposing forces will help keep your cord from unraveling.  Continue until your cord is as long as you want. 

You can add beads to the individual strands while you are twisting to keep them in place on your cord or over all the strands to allow them to move.  You will know you are doing it correctly if your cord does not unravel when you let go of it.  You should be able to set your project down and pick it back up later without it coming undone.  After your cord is as long as you would like it you can tie off the end or tie it around your wrist or ankle.  Your cord will unravel some after use if you do not tie it off. 

Try again with three strands or more.  Just twist the strand closest to you over the other two and continue as before. 

If you choose to use a pretwisted material for your cord you will need to twist them in the direction they already are.  Make sure that all of your strands are twisted in the same direction.  They will not be nice to work with if they aren’t. 

STEAM week 3: 

Making a worm farm:
Gather your materials. Kit from the Everett Free Library should have 1 bag of sand, 1 2 liter bottle, 1 ~16
oz. bottle, a brown paper bag, and a bag of worms. You will need to gather from home a shovel of dirt,
scissors, duct tape, water, a hammer and nail or other way to make some holes, and some food scraps.
Use the nail to poke some small holes (smaller than your worms) near the top of the large bottle. These
should be close to the skinny tapered part, 1-2 inches below the cap. Use scissors to cut the entire top
of the big bottle off below the air holes. This should be close to but above where the taper ends.
Add about 1.5 to 2 inches of sand to the big bottle. Place your small bottle on top of the sand in the
center of the big bottle. Add a layer of dirt about 2 inches deep around the small bottle. Add a small
layer of sand about 0.5 inches deep. Be sure to keep your small bottle centered. Add another layer of
dirt, a small layer of sand, and end with dirt. This should get you near the top of the bottle. Do not fill
quite to the top.
Add a little bit of water. You will be able to watch it migrate down through the layers. You do not want
standing water in the bottom of your bottle but you do want it damp throughout. If your dirt was very
wet you may not need to add water. Watch this and keep your worm farm moist. Now you can add
your worms! Watch as they burrow down into the dirt. Add some food scraps to feed the worms.
Vegetable matter is good. Meat and dairy can make your worm farm smell.
Tape the top of the bottle back on. You can unscrew the bottle cap to add more food or water to your
worms. Place the bottle in a brown paper bag to make a dark place for the worms to be just like in the
ground. Keep your worm farm in a cool place like a basement.

STEAM week 2: Flower and leaf prints

Making flower and leaf prints: Find a hard flat surface like a counter or cutting board on the floor. Lay a sheet of construction or watercolor paper (printer paper will work but isn’t as nice because it doesn’t soak up the moisture the same) on the surface. Lay your flower or leaf face side down on the paper. You want it to be flat. If you have a flat flower such as a pansy you can place the flower directly on the paper and then pinch off the stem part. If you have something that does not flatten well such as a dandelion you can pull the individual petals off and place them on the paper. You can tape the petals or leaves down just make sure that the tape is not between the paper and the petal or leaf. Once you have placed your flowers and leaves cover them with a paper towel. I like to use a pen or pencil to draw around each one so I remember where they are. Next use your hammer to gently pound on each petal or leaf. You will need to be careful to cover each spot. Any spot that you miss will leave an empty place on your print. You can carefully pull back the paper towel to check your print. The paper towel will have a reverse of the print on the paper. If you have white spots on the paper towel you will have empty spots on your print. Carefully lay the towel back down and pound the empty areas. After you have finished that you can remove the paper towel and flowers and leaves. If they are stuck to your paper use a finger to gently roll them off. It may help to wait a few minutes to let them dry partially if they are very stuck. Now you have a picture!  

 

STEAM Week 1: Seeds


Planting sunflower seeds:
These are the white and black striped seeds in the packet. You will need sever small containers to plant
the seeds in. Empty one bag of potting soil in a container to mix. Add some water and mix. Use only
enough to make the soil damp, not soaked or dry. Put some soil in each container and tap gently to
settle. Add a sunflower seed and push down a little bit to cover lightly with soil. A child’s first knuckle is
a good measure. Set the pots in a warm place in your house. Outside is still too cold. This will allow the
seeds to germinate. These seeds will probably take 10-14 days to sprout. Check daily and draw a
picture of what happens on your log sheet.

Planting bean seeds:
These are the black and brown mottled seeds in the packet. You will need the baggie that the potting
soil for the sunflower seeds was in and a paper towel. Dampen the paper towel and squeeze the extra
water out. Make the towel damp, not dripping and not nearly dry. Add the bean seeds to the towel and
fold in half. Put everything in the baggie and seal most of the way to trap the moisture inside. Check
daily and draw what happens on your log sheet.