Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Astronomy Escape Room

We are studying Apologia's Astronomy textbook this semester and for our chapter about Earth I decided to do an Escape Room.  If you've never done one of these before they are super popular right now.  Basically the idea is that your team is "locked" in a room and must solve puzzles to escape.
We went to a fun Escape Room on vacation with my in-laws, but they are very expensive so I wrote one for my class to do.
There are three puzzles the kids had to solve and it took them about 30 minutes.  I was in the room, but I didn't help them at all.  They had to work together as a team.
I began by explaining that they were all junior scientists working for NASA and they had to stop a meteor from hitting the Earth by launching a rocket to explode the meteor.  However, their boss had the code and he was stuck in traffic!  They needed to solve the puzzles in the room to get the final code word to save the Earth!


The first puzzle was a layers of the Earth puzzle that went along with chapter five of the Apologia book.  I wrote the code and instructions to unlock the box for the next puzzle on various layers and they had to put it together in order to get the order and numbers for the lock.


Here is a picture of the box.  Inside was all the components (except water) for the next puzzle (also from the book), a compass.


Figuring out the puzzle



In this picture you can see them working on the first puzzle, the green lockbox with the compass pieces, the water, and the final word lock which is the brown bag.




The instructions for the compass were in their notebooks which I gave them in the room.  The rule was they could use anything in the room, but they could not leave the room to get anything.



The compass instructions included the clue to check all four directions for their next puzzle.  I wrote on the various space posters with invisible ink pens and had blacklight flashlights for them to use.  This was a HUGE hit!  They were SO SO SO excited when they found these clues.



You can see the clue in the light above


Each letter had a symbol by it...


They had to check the book to see what symbol went with what planet


Then they had to put the planet symbols in order to spell out the final mystery word


The final word to unlock the room was "solar"


The prize for finishing?  Earth cookies of course!  The kids all LOVED the hands-on way of reviewing what we learned about with the Earth.  I am planning on writing another Escape Room when we study the weather...stay tuned ;)





Friday, August 18, 2017

Power Ranger Birthday Party

We recently had a super fun, super crazy birthday party for my son with ten of his friends.  It was a LOT of testosterone running around :)
Here are the games that we played since it is SO hard to find fun games for parties:

First, we made "morphers" or "throwing stars" with cut up cardboard cereal boxes, duck tape, stickers, and sharpies.
A punch board with different colored Power Ranger sashes in them.  I bought satin ribbon on sale at Hobby Lobby and used freezer paper stencils and paint to put the symbol from the newest movie on them.
Then, we had a Nerf "shooting the bad guys" contest.  I used this fun beanbag toss game my sister-in-law made my kids for Christmas last year and taped printed Power Ranger villains to the inside of the holes.  It was WAY harder than it looked but the boys loved it.
After that, we had water balloon training outside.  My husband was in charge of this so I could clean up from feeding the masses.  He had them toss a balloon back and forth, try to hit one tossed at you with a bat, and see how far you could throw it.
Next, the birthday boy had made up an obstacle course in our back yard that he wanted everyone to follow him and do so they all ran around and did that for a while.
The final game that we used was a "collect the energems" game.  I made up 100 energems using bead tubes, glue, water, and glitter.  I hot glued the tops on so they wouldn't come off.  I also made bags for each child using iron on printed Power Rangers to match their color sash.  (I got the bags at Hobby Lobby too)  They each got to find 10 energems and then we split them so they had one of each color.  It was a bit like an Easter Egg hunt, but the boys loved it and because my husband hid all the energems for me, it took them a while to find them all.  It was pretty cool to see them helping each other after they found all their items and working together so nicely.  Totally worth all the time I put into making the little things!
For party favors the boys took home their sashes, bags, energems, and a small bag of candy (pulled from my kids' 4th of July stash, lol)  It ended up being a super loud, but super smooth, easy party!


All the sashes drying.  I used craft acrylic paint on satin ribbon and it worked beautifully!


The bags.  Birthday boy got the super big picture.  They turned out pretty cool.


The nerf game.  You could also use a cardboard box with cutout holes but I happened to have this.


The top view of the punch board.  I used clear cups because A. I had them and B. I could see what color sash each kid would get that way.  Some had strong preferences.


Front view of the punch board.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Where's Max Quiet Book

This is not my pattern.  I purchased it off Etsy to make as a baby gift.  Oh my WORD it is cute!
Best part was I didn't need to purchase anything to make this as my hoarding, crafty self had everything in my stash of fabric and craft stuff :)  I LOVE gifts that only cost me time and look so fabulous!

the cover


all the animals are attached with elastic so they can stretch out of their homes


Max is attached with ribbon so he can't get lost :)





Isn't it just precious?  I love how the designer has a mix of fabric and felt.  Really brings so much texture and color to the book!