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Water Filtration

filtering waterThe a bunch of kids at the park learned about where our water comes from, where it goes and how it gets cleaned in the process. To make this more understandable we did some filtration activities. First we simulated what water would have in it at the reservoir, the younger kids ran about and got sticks,seeds, dead and living leaves and grass and dumped it in our container of water. Then they chose from a selection of filtering mediums for the first filtration step, like the giant grate at the water treatment plant. They picked the netting from an onion bag. Then they used a metal mesh strainer. Once the large organic materials were removed, they used filter paper, cotton and paper towels. They figured out that the paper towel worked the best.

To take it a step further they then tried a combination of filters all at the same time to see if they could speed up the process. Good thinking!
filtered water 2filtered water 3

 
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Posted by on August 2, 2014 in Camps, Children's Art & Science Classes, Science, science in the parks

 

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Dr. Augie’s Nature & Writing Camp

pH testing stream waterAre your kids or grandkids getting bored this summer? Well sign them up for Dr. Augie’s Nature and Writing Camp! It will be loads of smart fun, silly fun and just plain fun!

August 4-8, 2014
9am to 1:30pm Cost $175 or $35/day

You can print and mail the application or you can pick up an application at St. Mark’s Church office.

​Students are taken on daily guided nature hikes, where we’ll explore the terrain and examine different kinds of local plant and animal life. Afterwards, everyone adjourns to the classroom to write a fictional story based on some of the flora and fauna we encountered that day.

Additionally will meet Mr. Horace Franklin Turtle and other live animals as we learn about invasive and native species. Ages 7-12.

 

 

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Science in the Park

beetle catching kidThis month I have been having fun with some kids at Pitt Park, doing science. Fun stuff like catching bugs and isopods.catching isopods

sun screen experimentMarcus read to us about the suns UV rays and why we should protect ourselves from too much sun. To test this we did a simple sunscreen experiment using Sunprint paper pdf here to see what strength of sunscreen works best, but our results were: the spray kind doesn’t work very well.

setting up sun printpressing sunprintsetting up sun printFor fun we made some sun prints using nature findings from the park!

 

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Nature and Writing Summer Camp

great spangled frittilaryWe checked out the space for our summer camps this week. Out in the meadow we saw this beauty.

Our Nature & Writing summer camp takes place at St. Mark’s School in Pittsfield, MA August 4-8, 2014 and is run by experienced adult educators and professionals. The camp runs 9am to 1:30pm Cost $175 or $35/day.

Students will go on daily guided nature hikes, where we’ll explore the terrain and examine different kinds of local plant and animal life. Afterwards, everyone adjourns to the classroom to write a fictional story based on some of the flora and fauna we encountered that day. Additionally will meet Mr. Horace Franklin Turtle, bunnies, and other live animals as we learn about invasive and native species. Ages 7-12.

While we do our best to maintain the highest levels of cleanliness at all times, we give students a very hands on approach, and sometimes that gets messy.

To register for the above class contact: Lisa Provencher <Dr.Augies@gmail.com> or print out this Camp class application form.

For more information:http://draugies.wordpress.com/kid-programs/summer-classes/

 
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Posted by on July 18, 2014 in Camps, Children's Art & Science Classes, insects

 

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Butterfly Pavilion

I finally took a tour of the Butterfly Pavilion at the Berkshire Museum. It was amazing. Definitely worth the trip up to visit. Its not huge, but there are about 200 butterflies you get to meet up close and personal. Bring a camera!

blue morpho underwing white butterfly proboscis black yellow butterfly

 

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The Caterpillar Lab

cecropita caterpillarI had the opportunity to get a sneak peek at the setting up of “The Caterpillar Lab” at the Berkshire Museum. Its the creation of Sam Jaffe, evolutionary biologist and educator. He told me all the cool and fascinating stuff about his caterpillars that he and his team caught or raised from eggs. They are all native, some common and others rarely seen.

 

 
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Posted by on July 12, 2014 in insects, Science

 

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Science in the Park

keying skullsIn collaboration with the Berkshire Environmental Action Team (BEAT) and Partners in Out of School Time (POST), Dr. Augie’s will be holding science in the park, at Pitt Park in Pittsfield Monday-Wed-Friday. This Friday we started with skulls. The kids had a chance to look a collection of skulls and learn how to use a key to identify them. It was fun. Lots of new words and terms like interorbital foramen, bulbus, rostrum. But they stuck with it! Impressive.

 

 

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