Thursday, March 3, 2011

Science with Tasmania

About this time last Spring I applied and was accepted The Global Collaboration Project Rock Our World and through this project we have meet the most amazing people throughout the globe. At the core of Rock Our World is video conferencing. Which at the time was fairly new to not just the Oneco's Gifted Program, but to our school and county as well. I am so grateful for the experiences we have had with ROW and feel blessed that some of those we have meet along the way continue to interact with us on a regular basis.

One of those we have been lucky enough to stay in contact with is Liz Mason and her family from Hobart, Tasmania. We met Liz during last Spring’s Round of ROW and one night while on her school holiday Ms. Mason was nice enough to stay up to about midnight to meet with my third graders to tell them a bit about Tasmania.

After ROW InTOONational this fall, some of us got to talking how we did not want the video conferencing to end and somewhere in the mist of these conversations Ms. Mason and I set up a time for us to meet again. Like before, she stayed up to all hours to meet with us, but this time she was not alone her teenage daughters Amy and Hana joined in on the fun. Our first chat with Ms. Mason and her daughters involved my fifth grader students and covered a variety of topics. Amy and Hana were an absolute delight and seemed to enjoy our discussion on television shows, junk food and Florida’s Amusement Parks. Oprah had just visited Australia and they were also interested in discussing the various things they had seen during those episode. While my Florida students also enjoyed discussing television and junk food. Along with hearing about Tasmanian wild life.

That chat was so much fun when the Mason family asked if we wanted to do a science experiment via Skype we jumped at the chance. This endeavor brought about some fun little challenges. At first, we need to do a bit of research on the list of ingredients that were needed due to some of the names being different in each country. For instance, in Tasmania Powdered Sugar is called Icing Sugar and Baking Powder is Bicarbonate soda. Along with that we had to order a couple of the items from Amazon, which was not a big deal. Except it did mean that we had to readjust our plans and move the experiment back a week. However, for us all that meant was that now my third graders would have the pleasure to visiting and getting to know Ms. Mason and Hana some.

Finally, the day came for the experiment and the stage was set for the following:

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