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Grandma's Place A Natural Learning Center

Grandma's Place of Natural Learning Center

Is The Best Place for Learning


Day 165

Posted on May 21, 2014 at 11:51 AM
Good Morning Folks! Grandma will now give you things to do with Stone Fox out of her book (4) about exploring mountain ranges and some experiments on Sound.
Stone Fox by John Reynolds Gardiner, illustrated by Marcia Sewall (HarperCollins 1980)
Little Willy lives with his Grandfather on a potato farm near Jackson, Wyoming. When Grandfather falls into a deep depression over his inability to pay the land taxes, Willy decides to help out by entering his dog Searchlight in the National Dog sled Race, where the first prize is $500. Willy's major opponent is the Native American, Stone Fox, who races his team of Malamutes each year and inevitably wins, using the prize money to buy back land he feels the white settlers have stolen from his people. The plucky Searchlight, neck and neck with Stone Fox's team, dies of exhaustion just before he reaches the finish line. Stone Fox stops his own team and the others as well so that Willy can carry the body of his gallant dog across the finish line and win.
Point out the city of Jackson, Wyoming, and the Teton Mountains on a topographical map. Invite (the children) to indicate on the map the mountain range of which the Tetons are a part (the Rocky Mountains) and to discuss what they know about the mountain terrain and climate. Show the book cover and preview some of the illustrations so that students can check and verify their ideas. (Videos of topographical maps have been provided that are connected by a link to Youtube in Day 164 blog.)
As you Read
Discuss the many decisions Willy has to make and invite (the children) to tell why he chose certain actions and rejected others. For example, why did Willy choose to take care of his Grandfather himself rather than let Mrs. Peacock care for him? Why did Willy decide to work to keep the farm instead of selling it? How did Willy decide to harvest the potatoes when he could not rent horses to pull the plow? Invite students to tell how Willy and his grandfather feel about the land and how each of Willy's decisions is based on his ultimate goal: to keep the land so that his grandfather will take heart and get well.
At the conclusion, (the children) can respond via a Discussion Web (with the title at the top of "Discussion:"The Race" in Stone Fox and the word "Reasons" below it and the question "Did Willy deserve to win the race?" in the middle along with space marked No and why on one side; space for and Yes marked on the others side.) to the problems raised when Willy wins the race at the expense of Searchlight's life. ...
Extending Geography Skills:
Mapping the Mountains
(The children) can first research the six chief ranges of the Rockies, then contribute their findings to a  (list) which describes the ranges in pictures and captions.
  1. Introduce the activity by explaining that the Rockies are the largest mountain system in North America. The chain is more than 3000 miles long, and about 350 miles wide in some places. (You may wish to point out that in the United States the Rockies form the Continental Divide: rivers flow from the western slopes to the Pacific Ocean, and from the eastern slopes to the Atlantic.) Write the following list ...and invite (the children as volunteers) to identify the ranges on a topographical map as you read the list:
       1.  Southern Rockies: from the Sangre de Cristo range in New Mexico to central Colorado.
       2.  Middle Rockies: from northwestern Colorado and northern Utah to the upper Yellowstone River
            in Montana.
       3.  Northern Rockies: from southern Idaho to the border between the U.S. and Canada.
       4. Canadian Rockies: from the Canadian border north through British Columbia and Alberta.
       5. Selwyn Mountains: northward beyond the Liard River in northern Canada.
       6. Brooks Range: across northern Alaska to north of the Arctic Circle.
 2.   ...(Work for the assignment)  can include the following:
       (1) using topographical maps to find the highest peaks in the chain;
       (2) using political maps to find major cities in the chain;
       (3) researching to find national parks and sites of historical interest in the chain;
       (4) drawing pictures to illustrate the data from 1, 2, and 3;
       (5) writing brief captions to go with the pictures."
 3.   (This part is for making a Bulletin Board to collect travel maps, the writings, pictures, etc on--unless you want this in your home , basement or place of learning--one must think of another way to collect material, plan a vacation etc. if that is what you want any of it for.)
"Making Connections
What If...Stories -Invite (the children) to write paragraphs telling what might have happened if various events had taken a different turn, or if characters had made other choices. Introduce the activity by writing some examples ...(down), then invite (the children) to make up "what if's..." of their own. Add their suggestions to the ...list. Examples are: What if the banker had not let Willy withdraw his saving from the bank? What if Stone Fox had not let Willy win? What if Searchlight had not died? What if Grandfather decided to sell the farm? Suggest that students choose one of these "if's" or another one to develop in their paragraphs and to illustrate with a drawing. After students have shared their work with the class, put the paragraphs and pictures in a folder on a reading table for students to read and discuss with a partner.
Book Quiz-Invite interested (children) to make up word problems loosely based on the story materials, for example: the number of potatoes Willy and Searchlight can plow in certain periods of time; the amount of money Willy and Grandfather can save or earn: the distance a Malamute and Searchlight can pull a sled in a certain number of minutes. You might also give (the children) access to a road map of Wyoming and adjoining states and invite them to make up problems that involve using the distance scale on the map or the labels that indicate the altitudes of landforms. Ask students to present their word problems to the class, and encourage the problem-solvers to explain how they arrived at their answers. Then put the word problems in a folder in the math center for students to solve on their own.
(For those people who have never been to these areas Grandma has traveled through the Rockies and visited many places with and without her family. One time she took her boys through the Rockies and up to Yellowstone in Wyoming; then through the northern part of Wyoming which is beautiful; for she had traveled through the middle with her parents and it was very long and desolate. She would love to live in the Rockies, but she has a family she has felt was important to stay close to even though her daughter despises her existence most the time and her boys do not understand her because her mother is always in between finding fault because Grandma believes she is her scapegoat as her father was even though she has learned how much Grandma is like her. It is all very sad. Grandma has also traveled to middle and southern California which really can have some advantages even though I was never even to Hollywood. You already know she has traveled through Mexico which I would love to
make a book about. I have heard the Eastern part of United States is very beautiful. I have yet to travel through the southeast to Florida maybe someday. Grandma also planned a trip through Canada with a travel book and learned a lot about it that way. I hope you all get to travel in your days also however, I will worn you to be careful of costs. Even mileage costs a lot today.)
One last sheet Grandma wants to give you for the children to be able to do is called Actions and Feelings. Listed on the left side of a paper will be some feelings given and the children and yourself can fill out events from Stone Fox that made you have each separate feeling that can be cut apart from the others see if they match with each others. Following are the feelings:                                                                                                         
Feelings                                                       Events
Next Grandma will give you some Sound exercises from Book(12) as follows:
The first experiment is called Humming flute. A square piece of paper has one corner snipped off, and two notches made in the opposite corner. Roll the paper in the direction of the arrow in the figure to make a tube about as thick as a pencil and push the notched corner back into the opening. Draw a deep breath through the tube. This causes a loud humming note.
The paper corner is sucked up by the air which is drawn in, but since it is slightly springy, it begins to vibrate. The vibration is quite slow, so the note is deep.
The next experiment is called Water organ. Half fill a thin walled glass with water, dip in your forefinger and run it slowly round the rim of the glass. A lovely, continuous ringing note is produced.
The experiment only works if your finger has just been washed. It rubs over the glass, giving it tiny jolts. The glass begins to vibrate, which produces the note. If your finger is greasy, it slides smoothly over the glass without the necessary friction. The pitch of the note depends on the amount of water, and the vibration can be seen clearly on the water surface.
The next experiment is called Note transfer. You can extend the previous experiment. Place two similar thin walled glasses an inch apart and pass your freshly washed finger slowly round the rim of one of them. A loud humming note is produced. In a strange way the second glass vibrates with the first, and you can observe this vibration if you place a thin wire on it.
The vibration of the first glass is transmitted to the second by the sound waves in the air. This 'resonance' only occurs if the glasses produce notes of the same pitch when struck. If this is not the case with your two glasses, you must pour some water into one until the pitches are the same.
The next experiment is called Peal of bells. Tie a fork in the middle of a piece of string about a yard long. Wind the ends several times round your forefingers and hold the tips of your fingers in your ears. Let the fork strike a hard object. If the string is then stretched, you will hear a loud, bell-like peal.
The metal vibrates like a tuning fork, when it strikes the hard object. The vibration is not carried through the air in this case, but through the string, and the finger conducts it directly to the eardrum.
The next experiment is called Paper diaphragm. Halve a match, make a point on it and split it at the other end. Fix it on to a smooth piece of paper and hold it vertical on an old turning phonograph record. The music souds over the paper almost as clearly as from a loudspeaker.
The match travels in the grooves of the record and transfers the lateral vibrations to the paper like a phonograph needle to the diaphragm of a loudspeaker. The vibrations of the paper are carried to your ear drum as sound waves through the air.
The next experiment is called Footsteps in a bag. Put a house fly in a smooth paper bag, close it, and hold it horizontally above your ear. If you are in a quiet room you can hear the patter of the six legs and other rather curious noises quite clearly.
The paper behaves like the skin of a drum. Although only the tiny legs of the insect beat on it, it begins to vibrate and transmits such a loud noise that you would imagine that a larger organism or a rattling clockwork motor was in the bag.
The last experiment having to do with sound that Grandma has is called Box Horn. Obtain a battery about 2 to 3 inch square. Take a wire about 10 to 12 inches long and attach a striped end attached to one side of the battery and another 5 to 6 inches long with the ends stripped to the battery and to the end of a clothespin with a drawing pin it calls N. Next take a  1 by 3 or 4 inch board A either 12 inches long and cut off 2 inches of it off B. Else use one 1 by 3 or 4 inch board A at 10 inches long and another B one by 3 or 4 inches 2 inches long. Screw B into the side of board A. Bore a hole at the top to put a bolt C through at the top of the board B. Around the bolt C wind a thin piece of paper E and then enough wire to cover it F and have one end about 8 inches past the end of the bolt and the other about 12 inches longer the other direction and  with the ends stripped attach one end  to the other end of the Clothes pen with a drawing pin M.
Attach one side of a regular tin can G almost touching the bolt C to the board A. Then take a small inch wide board H that can fit in the can shaped so there is a little space on the bottom to fit on the attached side to A and lay flat at the other side outside of the can next to the board A with two small wood screws yet have and inch upward on the top end of the part in the can that another wood screw K can go through and touch the bottom of the can. Attach the other end of the wire F to a hole through the top edge of the can G. Then attach the other wire from the battery attach to the screw K around its head. Put a little oil at the end of that screw K next to the bottom of the can.
The Clothes Pin with the wires connected at M and N act like as a Car horn. The apparatus works on the same priciple as a car horn. If you close the circuit by pressing the horn buttn, the screw C becomes magnetic and attracts the base of the tin. So the circuit is broken in front of the screw K. Screw C loses its magnetism, and the base of the tin springs back to the screw K. The process is repeated so quickly that the tin plate produces the horn note by its vibration.
That will be it for now I will type some more later today. Must go for now.

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This is awesome! Thank you Grandma for providing these lessons! I feel so grateful for this. I've been tutoring my 4 year old for months and this is very useful for me. He's been enjoying the lessons so far and since we are at home, he feels more comfortable and active since we are at is his comfort zone. Keep doing what you do, I'm sure you have helped a lot of parents out there. I hope for more valuable lessons that you will share. More power!
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