with Kim Rodgers
This week in Chemistry we learned about mixtures. Some things dissolve when mixed with other things and some do not. It’s the molecules that determine whether or not they will dissolve. They must follow rules. The main rule for dissolving is “like dissolves like,” which means molecules that are alike will dissolve and molecules that are not alike will not dissolve. We learned that water contains both an H (hydrogen) group and an OH (oxygen hydrogen) group, which allows many molecules to dissolve into it. Oil and grease are not like water, but soap has molecules that are a little like water and a little like oil. The oily part of soap dissolves in the oil and the watery part of soap will dissolve in water. The oil molecules are trapped by the soap and water inside a little droplet and rinses away!
Mixing It Up!
For our experiment the students made hypotheses about whether or not certain liquids would mix (they couldn’t see where one liquid began and another ended) or whether they would not mix (visible separation of some sort). Our liquids were water, milk, juice, oil, and melted butter. They used their experiences with those liquids to determine their hypotheses. Pairs then split up and spent the class period mixing the liquids and writing down their data. Afterwards they came to the conclusion that water, milk, and juice shared similar properties, while oil and butter shared properties. Then we took a small spoonful of dish soap and added it to each mixture to observe if the mixtures changed at all. Our results were a little skewed because at this point the butter started to congeal again. But the students did notice that the soap allowed the oil to mix a little more with the water, juice, and milk. They still weren’t completely mixed, but the difference between the two liquids was less noticeable.
Please encourage your child to use their notebooking page to write down something they remember from class. I challenged them to not only write down what we did, but also a reason why our experiment turned out the way it did. If they forget, feel free to read them the Mosaic Minutes so their memory can be refreshed and look over their data with them. These things will help the lessons learned extend beyond our class.
Richard the Lionhearted and the Magna Carta
In the Middle Ages we read about Richard the Lionhearted and his brother John. When Richard was crowned King of England after his father died he began selling off his possessions in order to raise money for an army to join in the crusades. He was so obsessed with the idea of taking Jerusalem back that it consumed him and made him forget his kingdom. He joined forces with the King of France and the Duke of Austria, but soon quarreled with both of them and was left alone with his army. As they approached Jerusalem Saladdin’s army came out to meet them and kept them from entering. Richard wouldn’t even look at Jerusalem at that point. It was too painful.
Richard began hearing rumors that his brother was trying to take over the throne while he was away, so he began journeying back home to take care of the situation. He took a short cut through Austria and ran into the king whom he had fought with. The king locked Richard up in a prison tower. No one knew where Richard was and many considered him dead and mourned for him. According to legend, Richard had one friend who couldn’t believe that he was dead. Blonde traveled across Europe on foot checking dungeons and towers, singing an English song hoping to hear a voice responding in his native English tongue. He finally found Richard in the tower and went back to England to share the news. The king of Austria demanded ransom in the sum of 150,000 marks, which is almost $3,000,000 in today’s money! But England paid in order to get its king back home. He wasn’t home long before he was off again, fighting in a battle close to home. Unfortunately, he was killed by a stray bullet in this battle.
Richard’s brother John was not King of England, but unlike his brother Richard the Lionhearted, John’s nickname was John Lackland. When his father died he left everything to Richard, which meant that John lacked land! John tried to show his strength by participating in many battles in France in which the French king was trying to take English castles in France. These battles cost a lot of money and John spent a lot of time charging enormous taxes and drumming up ways to get more money from the noblemen. This only made the noblemen resent John more. Finally they revolted and took an army into London and captured it. John decided to meet with the rebels. He was presented with a paper containing laws that the king had to follow. It was called the Magna Carta, or Great Charter. John knew that if he didn’t sign it he would lose his crown. This was the first time that the law ruled a country, instead of a king. Today we follow in the footsteps of the Magna Carta in that our leaders represent us and must follow the same laws that we do.
The students used paper that had been dyed in tea to write up their own Magna Carta, pertaining to their bedroom. They are supposed to share their laws with their families and have everyone sign it and live by it for a week. They can share their experiences in class next week.