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Summer STEAM Challenges

Each week during the summer reading program we'll present a different science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM) challenges you can try at home. After you complete each weekly challenge, log in to your summer reading account to mark it complete. Complete all eight weekly challenges to complete the summer reading program. If you are playing on a printed gameboard, mark an "X" on your gameboard after you have completed each week's STEAM challenge. 


WEEK 5 — SUNDIAL 



WKYC-TV chief meteorologist Betsy Kling uses STEAM skills every day to predict weather patterns. In this week's challenge we'll harness an ancient technology used for centuries to keep time.

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Additional Resources 

How Do Sundials Work? • The Wonder of Science
The simplest sundial consists of two parts: a flat plate and a gnomon (or stick) that casts a shadow on the plate. When the sundial is properly aligned it will tell the local solar time. This may have to be adjusted to find national clock time due to longitude, season, and daylight savings time.
 
Scientific American • It’s About Time to Make a Sundial
For millennia people have used sundials to tell the time of day based on the apparent position of the sun in the sky. There are many types of sundials, but in general each consists of a gnomon, a thin rod that casts a shadow onto a dial, and a flat plate or platform. As the sun’s position changes in our sky, the shadow it casts will align with lines marking each hour indicating the time of day.
 
North American Sundial Society • Sundials
Learn about the history, design and constructions of sundials from the most ancient to modern times. You can learn about some that are ancient stones, small pocket instruments, or dials that are actual buildings. Telling time throughout the ages comes in all shapes and sizes.


WEEK  4 — ICE PAINTING 

At Sherwin-Williams they use math to control the quality of paint products, and to ensure the sustainability and continuous improvement of their operations. In this week's challenge, we'll have some fun making our own paint while learning science and math skills.

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WEEK 3 — STEAM IN THE KITCHEN 

Chef Rocco Whelan of Fahrenheit uses math and science skills to create a variety of delectable dishes. In this week's summer STEAM challenge we invite you to dream up a meal of your favorite summer foods, and then try making them at home. 

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Additional Resources

BBC Good Food • BBC
Get into the kitchen and turn your littlest eaters into chefs. This website features 67 recipes that you and your kids can make together and enjoy.
 
Bright Horizons • STEM in the Kitchen
What do cooking and STEM have in common? More than you might think. STEM learning can happen every day in small moments as we slow down to observe and ask questions. Grab an apron, preheat the oven and start wondering.

How Stuff Works • 5 Safe Cooking Activities in the Kitchen
Many children don't see cooking as a chore. Instead, they delight in using ingredients and child-safe kitchen tools to create a finished product. In fact, cooking can teach or reinforce basic math concepts, enhance reading skills, foster creativity and emphasize the importance of safety. HowStuffWorks has put together a list of five safe cooking activities for supervised children to enjoy preparing, serving and eating.
 

WEEK 2 — density & fluid

NASA aerospace engineers use fluid dynamic analysis to help design faster, more efficient aircraft. The fluid they deal with in their work is air, but the same type of analysis can be applied to water to help build better boats, jet skis and surfboards. In this week's challenge we'll use common household items to explore an important property of water — density. 

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week 1 Challenge — Observing Nature 

Stormwater inspectors with the Northeast Ohio Sewer District use science, technology, arts, engineering and math skills to help prevent erosion and flooding, and protect the water quality of our local streams and Lake Erie. In the first part of this challenge, you'll learn how NEOSD inspectors use STEAM skills in their storm response efforts. In the second part, we'll get outside and record our own nature observations for a special project.

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Additional Resources  

Observe Nature • The Globe Foundation
Looking at the world around you is an important first step in scientific research.  There are many ways to explore the world and to help identify the area you want to investigate. 
 
Project Learning Tree • 12 Nature Walk Activities
Additional opportunities for learning experiences in a variety of subjects such as science, geography, math, and art. Each nature walk offers something different for students to explore – even if you walk the same trails from one day to the next.
 
John Muir Laws • Nature Journaling and Observation
We live in a world of beauty and wonder. Train your mind to see deeply and with intentional curiosity, and the world will open before you. Keeping a journal of your observations, questions, and reflections will enrich your experiences and develop gratitude, reverence, and the skills of a naturalist.
 

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