Weekly Roundup: Ice Sculptures

The highlight of this short week was definitely beginning our ice sculptures! Last week we had a look at some photos of ice sculptures online, and after making some theories about how they had been created, we decided to make our own. The K-pals brought in lots of cleaned recycling, and as we made a plan of action, they quickly saw the efficiency in separating into teams of container "fillers", container "carriers", and door holders. We have some regular Henry Fords in the bunch!

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As the school deck began to fill up with containers, some of the K-pals suggested that we make a sign asking the "big kids" to watch out for our ongoing project. I love when an opportunity to embed literacy practice presents itself authentically like that! 

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Once all the containers were filled (and wet mittens were changed, and the bathrooms were mopped...) we all moved to the deck to add colours to the water.  Miss K. asked the children to predict what colours would result from different combinations, and they were totally mesmerized as the drops of food colouring swirled and spread into the water. We also made some predictions about how long it would take for the water to freeze. "Probably about 10 minutes!" was one idea!

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At the end of the day the K-pals rushed out to see if the water had frozen. On any other day this winter it probably would have been frozen solid already, but we chose one of the warmest days we've had in months to start our ice sculptures, (of course!) so we had to be patient. We took it as an opportunity to modify our predictions, and ended the day certain that ice would form overnight.

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As the K-pals arrived at school the next morning they all ran straight for the deck to check again if the water had frozen. At first it seemed that it had, but upon closer examination, many containers that had ice on the surface or edges still had water inside or on the bottom.

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We had a lot of questions:

Why did this happen? Did it have something to do with the food colouring? Or the size of the container? 

The K-pals had to exercise even more patience then, when they learned that it was going to be a rainy couple of days. We decided to make one "test" sculpture to see what would happen to it in the rain, but to leave the rest of the containers alone until next week when the temperature is supposed to drop again. Stay tuned as we figure out how to get the ice out (once it finally forms!)

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