Have you ever wanted to visit a National Park such as the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, or Mount Rushmore? Now you can see 3D images of each park without leaving your house.
To you, national parks may be full of rocks. To geologists, it is like Disney World. Geologists study rocks. They could spend days or weeks at each park trying to solve the mystery of how the rocks were formed or moved.
To visit these parks from your computer, please go to: http://3dparks.wr.usgs.gov/
To learn more about geology, you can visit: http://www.sciencekids.co.nz/geology.html
In Washington D.C., you can visit the Insect Zoo and Butterfly Pavilion. They have over 70 species of insects in the Insect Zoo and well over a hundred species of butterflies in the pavilion.
You can visit the Magic Wings Butterfly House at the Museum of Life and Science in Durham, NC. They also have insects that you can see up close.
Would you like to go an incredible field trip without having to leave home? If you aren't able to go to a historical site for vacation, now you can visit online. Here are some fun places to explore:
*Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum: Online Exhibits
*Inside the White House
*The Supreme Court
*Library of Congress
*The Kennedy Center
*Smithsonian Museum of Natural History
*Mount Vernon Mansion
Geocaching is a fun way to combine technology with a treasure hunt. This is a great time of year for a treasure hunt.
You can use a GPS-enabled device. Some phones have an app that you can download. Your family will navigate to a specific set of GPS coordinates and then attempt to find the geocache (container) hidden at that location. There are geocaches in our area that contain toys for kids. The best part is that your children have fun exploring nature.
For more information on geocaching, please go to: http://www.geocaching.com/guide/
If you would like to try geocaching, type in your zip code at: http://www.geocaching.com/
Beginner caches (easier to find) will be highlighted in green. Under the D/T column (difficulty/terrain), choose the biggest red box. These containers are bigger and easier to find.
Enjoy your geocaching adventure!
You are not looking at stars in the sky. This is a picture inside of Waitomo Caves in New Zealand. The cave is lit by glowing spider bugs that scientists call Arachnocampa luminosa.
The flies grow to three centimeters long. The glow is a chemical reaction between Luciferin, a chemical substance, oxygen and ATP (an energy carrying molecule found in all living creatures). This glow helps the bug to attract food. The brighter they shine depends on how hungry they are.
If you visit the Glowworm Grotto cavern, you have to be very quiet. The bugs are very sensitive to sounds and will stop glowing if they think they will get hurt.
Fall is a great time of year to take your family on a nature trail. You can see the beautiful changes in nature with colorful leaves. You can enjoy the wonderful weather temperatures. Kids may even want to kick or jump in piles of leaves.
Some wonderful parks with nature trails are:
*Hemlock Bluffs Nature Preserve
*Fred G Bond Metro Park
*Lake Crabtree County Park
*North Cary Park
*Kids Together Park
Marbles Kids Museum in Raleigh is a great place for your kids to explore. Admission is $5. Parking is free on the weekend.
The museum has many science, math, and engineering exhibits and games. Your child can build a Lego tower, build with tools, send cars down a ramp, play sports, learn about money, pretend play in professions, play chess, and fill in math grids. It is a great place for your entire family. For more information, please visit: http://www.marbleskidsmuseum.org/
There is a great science store in Cary. Science Safari has science-related toys such as rockets, crystal growing kits, robotics kits, puzzles, games, and much more. They even have science classes where kids learn through playing and exploring.
You can come here to complete your STEM challenge by finding out the name of the turtle and iguana.
The store is located at 1255 Kildaire Farm Road, Cary, NC.
For more information, please visit: http://www.scisafari.com/
You can also read an article in The Cary News: http://www.carynews.com/2013/09/19/3206033/at-science-safari-in-cary-kids.html
Does your family like skywatching to see the moon, stars, and planets? If so, Morehead Planetarium and Science Center in Chapel Hill, NC is a great place to visit.
You can see planetarium shows, Science 360, Science Live, and exciting exhibits. You can go to a skywatching session and look into high tech telescopes. There are many youth, family, and professional programs. Your family can attend the NC Science Festival next year.
You can also listen to podcasts including one with Shuttle mission and spacewalk veteran Kathy Thornton at: http://www.moreheadplanetarium.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=page&filename=podcasts.html
For more information, please visit: http://www.moreheadplanetarium.org/
KES STEM Team
Our STEM Team includes teachers and parents.