Monthly Archives: July 2009

Time and Seasons Science Projects

Summer time is a great time to start planning for the spring science fairs. By starting now you can gather data and information that can later be compared and analyzed, making your day and night, time, and season science project the best it can be. For instance, if doing a project about day and night you can start making notes on when the sun/moon rises and sets during the summer then compare it to fall, winter, and spring. Or you could make notes on the difference between the position of the sun/moon when it rises/set in summer vs. winter. These could also be used to start a time science project comparing the exact time of rise/set and how long the day/night is at different times of the year. They could also be used to make a science project about different seasons in the year, noting temperature difference or precipitation difference.

There are a couple great articles posted to educationbug.org this week that can give you even more ideas on how to expand on these ideas. There is a specific article relating to Precipitation Science Projects which gives step by step instructions on making a rain gauge. You could use this to compare rainfall in each season or day vs. night.

College Savings Plans

The best time to start planning for your child’s college education is NOW. Whether your child is an infant, an elementary student, or not far from starting college, it is not to late to start a college savings plan. The best gift you can ever give your child is the gift of an education, his/her future may depend on it. There are a number of ways you can choose to invest in your child’s education. In a recent article posted on educationbug.org many of these options are defined, such as Roth IRA’s, prepaid tuition plans, mutual savings bonds, U.S. saving bonds, and more. It may seem that you have an eternity to save and plan before your child will be old enough to attend college, but trust me, the passing time of your child growing up seems to go by faster than any other aspect of time in life, so start now.

On a side note, educationbug also posted a grammar lesson article defining and comparing the words Eminent, Imminent, and Immanent. I always find these articles interesting and informative, and hope you do too.

Summer Science Projects

Summer is not over and many of you may still be looking forward to one last vacation before school starts again. Vacations can be a great opportunity to get ideas for your next science fair project, or even get started on your next project. If you are headed to the lake or the ocean you may want to consider an Earth Science Project, you can take samples of water, rocks, or soil to use and evaluate later. Or if you are going to the mountains or the zoo you can always gather information to create a great Animal or Zoology Science Project. Click on either of the links in this paragraph for more great ideas in these categories, or go to Science Projects for many other great ideas that you may be able to incorporate with your plans for the remainder of the summer vacation.

School Guidance Counselor

When I was in high school I thought the guidance counselor was the person in the office you got to go visit with when you got in trouble and needed some “guidance” to get back on track before you got sent to the principal, or detention. But, today I have a new appreciation for what guidance counselors really do.

I have to take a moment to give kudos and thanks to my daughters high school guidance counselor, without her my daughter could have gotten lost in the crowd. We relocated when my daughter was a young teenager and this guidance counselor went above and beyond her duties to make sure my daughter was able to get into all of the classes she needed, and at the levels she was prepared for. As time went on she stayed right on top of what had been accomplished, helped her set new goals, discovered when she needed a tutor, and helped us obtain the most out of her high school education by suggesting concurrent enrollment at our local college.

My daughter will soon be graduating college as one of the first in our family to do so. I owe my complete gratitude for all of the school teachers, administrators, and counselors who have helped my daughter succeed. We could not have done it without you. Thanks for showing us the dream, helping us set goals, and for all the help in making it happen!

What Makes a Good Science Project?

Some of the best science projects can be ripped directly from the daily news headlines. This week alone, there are many news articles relating to the anniversary of the landing on the moon, the Apollo 11 mission, and even dysfunctional space toilets. Any of these articles could contain great information or ideas on astronomy or solar system science projects. The toilet articles could even be used to explain engineering science projects or force, motion, and simple machine science projects.

There are always good news information on diseases such as cancer and HIV, new drugs associated with these and other diseases, or health and fitness articles which may be used for ideas on cells, heredity, and genetics science projects or Human Body, Health, and Nutrition projects.

But, what makes a good science project? There are many contributing factors to being able to have a good science project such as:
Purpose of the Science Project
Level of the Science Project
Availability of Materials Needed for the Science Project
Time Needed for the Science Project

Click on the link above for detailed information on what makes a good science project.

Math, Math, and More Math

I have been on a math kick lately so our most recent educationbug.org articles are centered around mathematics. There is an article in the Math Lesson section which is centered on Addition. Addition is one of the very first math lessons we learn. We start out as toddlers figuring out if there is more than just one of us then we are going to need enough to share with everyone, therefore quickly learning how to add the objects and the people we will need to share with (usually just to make sure we are assured we will get our share). This article is a greater reminder of all the different ways you can use to solve a problem with addition.

The other math article we posted is in the Science Projects area, called Math Science Projects. Most people think of “science” when considering what to do for a science project, especially one’s they intend to use for a “science fair”. But you would be surprised at how many different things you can do with math science projects. If you will read the article, I think you will find some fun and exciting ideas you can use for your next project.

Next, let me start by saying I do not homeschool my children, but, I came across an article about “Homeschool Math” and considering my interest in math lately I decided to read it. Something in the article really struck me, it suggests that just because you did well in math when you were in K-12 does not mean you are ready to teach math to your children. I had to take a step back and ask myself if I thought I would be qualified. At first, I thought, Yes! Then, remembering I took an algebra course at the local college last year and was thinking to myself, “I don’t remember learning this in high school.” Then I went home to do my homework and found out that my daughter (who was a sophomore in high school) was studying the exact same thing, and she started helping ME with MY homework. I suddenly realized I would not be well enough equipped to homeschool my children, at least not into their latter years of school. And once again I had a sense of relief to know my children are being educated by people who know this stuff and love it. I feel so fortunate that my children are have the opportunity to learn and grow from these wonderful teachers. I am so thankful there are people in this world who want to become teachers, who love education, who have patience and understanding, and who are willing to teach our children. THANK YOU TEACHERS!!!!

Education Jobs

Jobs within the educational field can range in difference from transportation to college Dean, or from Principal to cafeteria help. But regardless of your career goals if you are interested in employment within the school systems educationbug.org has some information you must read. Whether you are a parent, student, teacher, principal, or just interested in education and want to work with people who have your same interests you should pursue an educational job. The benefits and rewards go well beyond the paycheck. Setting an example or making a difference in a child’s life is one of the most rewarding things you will do in your lifetime.

We recently posted some articles on the details of specific education career opportunities and what those jobs entail as well as the typical requirements you need to meet for those jobs. There are articles on Become a School Counselor, Elementary School Principal, and/or School Administrator.

We also have a section within educationbug.org where employers can sign up and list educational jobs in 18 different categories. Jobs are posted on a regular basis and offered nationwide. Click here for more information on listing a job or to see what is currently available in the job listing area.

Less and Fewer

There are so many words in the English language to describe measurements, or how much or how little you have of something it can become confusing as to when it is appropriate to use one word vs. another. Less and Fewer are two of those words that people often get confused about. In our recent Grammar Lesson article we discuss many of the issues and rules for using count and non-count nouns, quantifying count nouns, and quantifying non-count nouns.

While there you may also like to read the article on uninterested vs. disinterested, two more commonly confused words. In fact, if you poke around a bit you will be able to find a lot of articles on commonly misused words. Read these articles to improve your vocabulary skills, surprise your friends by being able to explain the difference to them, or just do it for fun!

Advantages of Public Schools

People who live in the United States have one of the greatest opportunities there are in life, this opportunity is education. Not only do Americans have the opportunity to obtain an education but they are also given a number of choices in the way they wish to receive this education. People in America have the choice whether they want to go to Public School, Private School, Charter School, Christian School, Magnet School, or even be homeschooled. We have had many blog posts offering comparisons of these different options. Today, I would like to take just a moment to compare the advantages of Public Schools versus private schools and homeschools.

A few advantages of Public School vs. Private School:

  • Transportation is often included for no additional cost.
  • No tuition costs.
  • Choice of Public, Magnet, or Charter School.
  • Strict teacher certification rules.
  • Special programs and funding for disabilities and more.

A few advantages of Public School vs. Homeschool:

  • Have a large range of socioeconomic and different backgrounds.
  • Have students with a range of abilities and talents.
  • Number of children in classroom.
  • Funding for equipment and activities.
  • Funding at high school levels allows for sports, arts, and technical programs.
  • Offer a wide variety of social clubs, activities, and sports.

Every person, every family, and every situation is different. What works for one person may not work for another. These articles are provided so you can make an informed decision on what may work best for your family and your situation. The important thing is that we continue to educate our children and ourselves.

Make Salt Crystals

We have recently added two more science project articles to educationbug.org. The first, Make Salt Crystals gives great hints and tips for all ages. These are simple, easy to use ideas for creating salt crystal science projects. In this article, you will also find instructions for making sugar crystals. Why not make both and then compare the two?

The second science project article is on magnets, electricity, and energy, here you will find ideas for science projects in all of these categories. The projects are divided into categories by grade, simple projects for 1st-4th grades, moderate for 5th-8th grade, and more complex ideas for 9th-12th grade. The ideas in this article are a great way to test your knowledge and help you learn more about magnets, electricity, and energy. You may even find your next science fair project in one of these science project articles.