Monday, October 27, 2014

Ghost Balloons {Halloween Activity for Kids}

The kids participated in a fun STEAM program at our local library today.  STEAM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math.  The program started with the librarian reading aloud Balloons over Broadway: The True Story of the Puppeteer of Macy's Parade by Melissa Sweet.

It is a great book the told about the inventor of the amazingly giant balloons that float overhead in the Macy's parade and how they are actually like upside down puppets.

Hmm, but what could balloons have to do with the baking soda and vinegar we see on the table?? 

After the story, the kids watched a video from How It's Made to learn how latex balloons are made.   It is so cool to learn all that goes into making such a simple little balloon.

Then it was time for the kids to make Ghost Balloons!  First you draw a scary face on a white balloon then use a funnel to pour 2 Tablespoons baking soda into the balloon.   Our librarian had already filled the balloons with baking soda before the class so she temporarily sealed them with painter's tape so the kids could draw on them and not spill all of the baking soda out.  If you do this at home, just draw the face on the balloon before you fill it.

Then you fill an empty plastic water bottle with 1/2 cup of vinegar.  Keep the balloon hanging down to keep the baking soda in the balloon and carefully slide the lip of the balloon on to the water bottle.  Once the balloon is securely on the bottle, lift the balloon and let all of the baking soda fall down into the bottle.

The baking soda (solid - base) will mix with the vinegar (liquid - acid) to create a carbon dioxide (gas).  The gas rises and fills the balloon with CO2 and your ghost suddenly appears!

We've done experiments (and free play) with baking soda and vinegar but this one was new for the kids.

It was a great program and a fun way to play with science.  We love our library!

If you are looking for some more Halloween fun, visit the Flower Mound Library on Wednesday, October 29th from 5:00 - 8:00 pm for their Haunted Library!  Kids K-5 can come in costume and trick or treat through a library tour then have fun with games and crafts at their mini-carnival.  The event is free but you will have to have a ticket to attend.  Tickets can be obtained at the Youth Services desk on the morning of the event starting at 9:00 am. 

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Having a Wild Time at Indoor Safari Park

Rachel had her birthday party at Indoor Safari Park, a cute indoor play area for kids.  There are several climbing playgrounds, inflatable bounce houses, slides, ball pit, and trampolines.  So much fun!

I tried to get a cute shot of Rachel rolling in the ball pit but she was a wiggly worm and just never stayed still long enough to capture the moment!  She was just too excited!

The kids took a safari train ride through the jungle.  Our party guy talked about the animals they saw along the way and even had the kids make the different animal sounds.

She had lots of friends around her.  There were friends from her acting class, American Heritage Girls, and Community Bible Study class.  Plus a few of their siblings tagged along too.

Rachel's favorite part was the robotic animal rides.  They move on their own and can be steered but the party guy was right there to make sure the kids didn't play bumper cars and run the animals into the walls.

What a happy birthday girl!  I love to see that smile!

Rachel had some colorful cupcakes.  We topped each one with a little jungle animal, except for hers which only had room for her giant "6" candle.

Of course, if you know our baby girl, she loves icing.  When I asked her about what kind of cupcakes she wanted she seriously said that I could just give her a big tub of icing and a spoon!  So it isn't a surprise that she only licked the icing off of her cupcake and called it done.

Before the party, we had talked about just bringing her presents home and opening them there so she could have more time to play with her friends.  She had agreed but as she was eating her cupcake she just kept staring at the big pile of presents and she just couldn't resist.  She started digging in. 

Everyone had a great time and they each had a pink safari hat and a goody bag to take home.  Rachel said it was the best birthday party ever!