Sunday, 19 February 2017

DIY Bottle Rocket Experiment for the BBC #TerrificScientific Launch

The BBC has launched Terrific Scientific to encourage primary school children to learn more about DIY experiments they can try out at home (with some adult supervision!).  We attempted the DIY Bottle Rocket to show how easy it is to get anyone involved in science.  Eldest was only too keen to don his safety goggles and get stuck in.

You can watch our little video, which includes everything you need to make your very own DIY Bottle Rocket.  You do not need anything complicated to get involved - you might already have everything in your kitchen cupboards or can pick them up inexpensively enough!  The BBC wants the experiments to be accessible to all.

The video also shows some of our failed attempts – it is all a learning process after all so please do not feel too deflated if it doesn’t work first time!  We had the cork on too tight, the white vinegar not acidic enough (we then bought a fresh bottle!) and the kitchen roll didn’t open over the various attempts.  You do need to be patient, hubbie shaked the bottle instead – not the wisest of moves, remember to follow the safety protocols…

So yes we definitely had a few teething problems with our DIY Bottle Rocket but we managed to get the grand launch finally when it went REALLY high only to not get the footage we wanted as it all happened too quickly for the supervising adult to film!  You can see how long it takes to drop back to the ground though which gives you some idea that it went MUCH higher that last time.  Eldest said, “that freaked me out!” – he couldn’t get over how far it went.  It was frustrating when we didn’t manage to get the experiment to work but perseverance paid off.

Getting involved with science is fun and educational and its fabulous having the Terrific Scientific at Home online hub to give guidance and inspiration about different experiments you can try.  Why not try one of the activities over the holiday with your own children; we will certainly be attempting more over the half term holiday.  Who knows you might turn your child into a budding scientist!

ic10 Smart Watch Review

I was sent the ic10 smart watch (£39.99) to review.  

The app was easy to install, then you simply add a few details (gender, height, weight and date of birth) before pairing up your watch.

The watch paired up with the app without any problems.  I was encouraged to do 10,000 steps to be healthy.  I think it’s a great motivational tool, seeing how many steps you have done so far in a day does encourage you to keep going and walk further until you meet your target.  The app stated that 10,000 steps equates to 104 minutes walking or 40 minutes cycling so you get some idea about what you need to do to achieve your aim.  You can quickly see how many calories you have burnt too.

The watch was very lightweight and comfortable to wear.  The colours are very bright and vibrant or you can choose grey or black if you want something more neutral.  If you buy the light grey pink ribbon watch £5 goes to the Pink Ribbon Foundation, this charity helps raise breast cancer awareness.  With 1/8 women being diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime it’s an important charity to support.       

I wore my new watch on my left hand as the watch works best on your light hand (the hand you use less).  It did seem very accurate when we were driving the steps did not go up.  The display on the watch is good; you can clearly see the time, date and battery indicator.  

Then can click for the number of steps achieved and then again for the distanced travelled.

It has some very useful features; I really liked that when your phone rings the watch vibrates.  I have missed important calls before but with the watch vibrating that shouldn’t be a problem in the future.

You can also record your sleep activity, this is quite revealing seeing how well you have slept.  You can see the length of your deep and light sleep.  I had a bad nights sleep - I had chosen not to wear my ionCURVE wristband that night which might have been a mistake as I had been sleeping much better!

The battery lasts 7-10 days but you can charge it in less than 2 hours so can be done in the evening before you go to bed when your not active (watching TV) so you don’t have to miss out recording your steps or monitoring your sleep.

This is a useful product and a great way to encourage a healthier lifestyle.

Friday, 17 February 2017

We’re Going on a Bear Hunt Party #BearHunt

Yesterday we enjoyed being part of the We’re Going on a Bear Hunt twitter party with UKMumstv.  The film is so lovely, a little sad but also hopeful, you never know when the friends might be reunited again.  I mentioned a bit more about the Bear Hunt film already, but here I want to run through our enjoyable party!

We invited two friends to join my two and quickly cracked open the popcorn to settle them down for the film.  It’s a good length, ideal even for much younger children to follow the plot and stay attentive.

Watching the film no one was keen on the idea of a poo hunt though, in case it was too smelly!  Not that I blame them, I wouldn’t be a fan either!

The film did play on the heartstrings of my eldest, so I was glad I could mention how the little girl could find the bear again.  The poor bear looked sad to lose someone who was doing such a good job of taking care of him.

After the film the quiz was attempted and they were obviously paying attention as they all scored quite highly!  Here is the delighted winner of a now very much-loved bear.

Making Bear biscuits was very entertaining for such a simple activity; you just need digestive biscuits, chocolate buttons, icing pens and a sprinkling of creativity!

You can even turn into a Bear.

Everyone liked trying to pin the pompom tails on to the Bear with varied success, although he was with tail by the end of it.

Youngest liked wearing the Bear Ears he looked so cute!  Not fierce at all, just like the friendly Bear from the film.  You can download the template from the UKMumstv site.

A post shared by Karen (@missingsleep) on

We played the “I went on a Bear Hunt and I saw…” game and the four of them did rather well adding things like a banana, melon, flying pig, house and puddle as they went round the circle.

Before we knew it the party was sadly over and it was time for party bags.

Why not host your own #BearHunt party, just buy the DVD and have a few fun activities like the ones mentioned here.