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Sixth grade Science students blogging from the Pacific Northwest in Chimacum, WA!
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teacher: Alfonso Gonzalez

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Article posted September 11, 2012 at 05:05 PM GMT • comment • Reads 161

This is my first post since 6th grade. Now I am in 8th and I am just getting used to it again... so, HI!!

Article posted September 11, 2012 at 05:05 PM GMT • comment • Reads 161



Article posted June 5, 2012 at 05:23 PM GMT • comment • Reads 39

Random facts about Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches:



Their scientific name is Gromphadorhina portentosa

They live mainly in Madagascar

Males have large horns which they use to ram other males

Their hissing sound is part of their mating ritual and also serves as an effective warning call

They make their sound from exhaling through breathing holes instead of using vibrating membranes like most insects

Contrary to common belief, Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches are not pests and don't live in dwellings where people live. They actually live on the forest floor!

Cockroaches are somewhat active during the day, but are the most active during the night.

Article posted June 5, 2012 at 05:23 PM GMT • comment • Reads 39



Article posted May 10, 2012 at 05:50 PM GMT • comment • Reads 53

      This week my class has been doing snail experiments (see previous blog 'Snail Experiments'). My conclusion for that experiment was that extended exposure to light (or lack of) does not affect the snails preference over lighter or darker colors. I think this because when we tested the snails, after being exposed to constant light for 20 minutes they chose light colored paper, plus after being in total darkness for 20 minutes, they still chose the lighter colored paper. An inaccuracy that may have happened is that the blacked out box that we put the snails in may have not been completely black and there may have been a few spots where light was able to get through.   

Article posted May 10, 2012 at 05:50 PM GMT • comment • Reads 53



Article posted May 4, 2012 at 05:02 PM GMT • comment • Reads 38

This week my group is doing experiments with snails! Our plan is to test whether a snail prefers light or dark colors, and if a snails exposure to constant light or no light will change it's preference. Immediately after retrieveing two snails from the fishbowl (where all the snails are living), we will have the snails in front of black and white colored paper with a small piece of lettuce on each paper. Then, after doing three trials per snail, we will record the results of which snail preferred which color. Then, my group and I will put the snails in a blacked out box for the night, then try the experiment the next day!

Article posted May 4, 2012 at 05:02 PM GMT • comment • Reads 38



Article posted May 1, 2012 at 05:12 PM GMT • comment • Reads 62

What I know about snails:

1. They leave a slime trail!

2. They have one foot!

3. They have a shell!

4. They're basicly a pretty slug!



What I want to know:

1. A snake slithers, a horse gallops, so what's the word for the movement that a slug makes?

2. Can a slug smell?

3. Can a slug hear?

4. Can a slug taste?

5. What does a snail eat?

Article posted May 1, 2012 at 05:12 PM GMT • comment • Reads 62



Article posted April 17, 2012 at 04:54 PM GMT • comment • Reads 40

 For the past few weeks my group and I have been working on growng rye grass! The experiment consisted of putting rye grass seeds in a compost-sand mix and watering it every week with either warm water, cold water, salt water and sugar water, then drawing the results out on a poster. We expected the sugar-watered seeds to grow better than normal, the salt-watered seeds to not grow at all or to ever-so-slowly grow, the cold water to grow normally, and the warm water to absolutely kill the seeds and all possible growth. 



       At the end of the two week experiment, the results were something we never expected! The salt water AND sugar water had both caused no growth, whereas the plants watered with warm and cold water had plenty of growth! My group and I figured out that the salt water had destroyed the plants because when salt dissolves in water, it separates into sodium and bicarbonate. When the salt water was given to the plant, the sodium took away the nutrients in the soil, while the bicarbonate messed with the plant's ability to photosynthesize and absorb nutrients from the soil. We had also figured out why sugar water negatively affected the rye grass! In a normal plant-soil relationship, the osmotic pressure of the soil is higher than the plant's inner osmotic pressure, so when water is absorbed into the soil, the plant draws it up. However, sugar lowers the osmotic potential of the soil, so when sugar is regularly put into the soil, the osmotic pressure is lowered significantly to the point where the soil's pressure is so low that no matter how much you water it, the plant will still not be able to draw water from the soil, no matter how much you water it!



 





King, Tom. "Does Sugar Affect Plant Growth?" EHow. Demand Media, 10 Mar. 2011. Web. 04 May 2012. <[LINK]>.



Hill, Patricia. "What Effect Does Salt Water Have on Plants?" EHow. Demand Media, 30 Apr. 2009. Web. 04 May 2012. <[LINK]>.



Article posted April 17, 2012 at 04:54 PM GMT • comment • Reads 40



Article posted March 2, 2012 at 05:40 PM GMT • comment (1) • Reads 58

In science we were asked to answer this question and post it on our blog.

"Explain why offspring that result from sexual reproduction are likely to have more diverse characteristics than offspring that result from asexual reproduction."



My answer was:

"Offspring from sexual reproduction have more diverse characteristics because its a combination of two different pools of genetics, whereas asexual reproduction is from only one pool of genetics and characteristics."

Article posted March 2, 2012 at 05:40 PM GMT • comment (1) • Reads 58



Article posted February 27, 2012 at 06:08 PM GMT • comment • Reads 78

In science we have been studying genetics by using punnett squares.







By using genetics, everyone in my class made a baby! My baby ended up having light eyes and hair and attached earlobes!



Article posted February 27, 2012 at 06:08 PM GMT • comment • Reads 78



Article posted February 6, 2012 at 05:56 PM GMT • comment (1) • Reads 49

During the past few days, my group has been doing an experiment about bacteria in our school! We went around and swabbed four random spots in our school (my team did the toilet seat, the water fountain, the iPad screen, and the lunch room door handle) with wet Q-tips. We then rubbed the Q-tips in their correct quadrant of the petri dish, then incubated them- to grow the bacteria- then made observations at 24 hours and 48 hours. The results were astounding.

The question I had going into this experiment was 'What part of our school has the most bacteria?'. After growing the bacteria for 48 hours, the answer was the water fountain! That section of the dish was covered in bacteria. It was soo gross! I'm definitely never using that fountain again! An inaccuracy that could have happened was while we transported the Q-tip, we could've had bacteria from the air float on to it and contaminate the sample. The close second was the toilet seat, the third with the lunchroom door handle, and the place with the least bacteria was the iPad! Some questions I had after this experiment was why the iPad was less dirty than the door handle because the iPad is never cleaned and the handle is supposed to be cleaned everyday!

Article posted February 6, 2012 at 05:56 PM GMT • comment (1) • Reads 49



Article posted January 26, 2012 at 05:45 PM GMT • comment (1) • Reads 55

Although meiosis and mitosis kind of sound the same they have various differences, but they also have a few similarities. They both create more cells, but meiosis creates four cells, as opposed to the two that mitosis creates. They both also pass on DNA to cells they create, but the cells created by mitosis have the same exact DNA, while the cells created by meiosis all have different DNA.

Article posted January 26, 2012 at 05:45 PM GMT • comment (1) • Reads 55



Article posted January 25, 2012 at 05:53 PM GMT • comment • Reads 52

Q1: How do cells divide? If a cell splits in half to become two cells how are both those able to work?



A1: The cell's chromosomes duplicate themselves, then both of them move to opposite cell walls. The cell elongates and it's plasma membrane grows inward, then the cell splits! The cell divides and creates two sister cells. Those sister cells are able to work because the mother cell gives them everything they need to produce and survive.



Q2: Write a brief description of what is happening at each of the seven stages of cell division starting with Interphase.



A2: 1. Interphase- This is the longest part of the complete cell cycle. The cell is very active while the DNA replicates, centrioles divide, and proteins are being made.



2. Prophase- During the first stage of mitosis, the nucleolus fades and replicated (copied) DNA and associated proteins, also called the chromatin, condenses into the chromosomes. Each one of these chromosomes has two chromatids, and all of those chromatids have the same genetic information. The microtubules of the cytoskeleton also disassemble.



3. Prometaphase- the nuclear envelope collapses in this stage so there is no longer a recognizable nucleus. Some spindle fibers connect to chromosomes, but others elongate and and overlap each other at the cell center.



4. Metaphase- Tension applied by the spindle fibers aligns all chromosomes in one plane at the center of the cell.



5. Anaphase- Spindle fibers shorten, the kinetochores separate, and the daughter chromosomes, also called chromatids, are pulled apart and begin moving to the cell poles.



6. Telophase- The daughter chromosomes arrive at the poles and the spindle fibers that have pulled them apart disappear.



7. Cytokinesis- the spindle fibers that didn't attach themselves to chromosomes start breaking down until only a small portion of the overlap is left. Also in this region, a contractile ring finally separates the cell into two sister cells. Microtubules in both of those cells then reorganize themselves into a new cytoskeleton for the return of cell interphase.



















Article posted January 25, 2012 at 05:53 PM GMT • comment • Reads 52



Article posted January 3, 2012 at 06:04 PM GMT • comment • Reads 146

When I first started this project I thought that there was major differences between plant and animal cells. I was soo wrong! Even thought they look and work different, they have many, many similarities! The only part that animal cells have that plant cells don't are centriole! Also, the only things that plant cells have that animal cells don't are chloroplasts and cell walls! The many things that plant and animal cells have in common are: nucleus, nucleolus, cytolsol, centrosome, golgi, lysomes, peroxisome, secretory vesicles, cell membrane, mitochondrion, vacuole, smooth endoplasmic reticulum, rough endoplasmic reticulum, and ribosomes! Even though they all have the same components, they do different things depending on which cell they live in!

Article posted January 3, 2012 at 06:04 PM GMT • comment • Reads 146



Article posted December 1, 2011 at 06:12 PM GMT • comment • Reads 65

This week my class has been studying Parimecium to see if they displayed signs of living, and this is what we found!



 


 



I also made a video about amoebae!





 



Leave a comment about what you think!



 

Article posted December 1, 2011 at 06:12 PM GMT • comment • Reads 65



Article posted November 4, 2011 at 05:49 PM GMT • comment (2) • Reads 138

All this week in science we have been doing a facinating experiment! My groups question was how different liquids effected how big the polyacrylate crystals, also know as orbies, grew. We had five liquids, water, hydrogen peroxide, sugar water, salt water, and dirt water. We observed that over a period of 48 hours, the hydrogen peroxide orbies were the biggest with a pixel length of 670, and the salt water the smallest with a pixel length of 318.5. Plain water had a measurement of 645.4 pixels, sugar water had a measurement of 634.8 pixels, and finally, dirt water with a measurement of 620.3 pixels. Some inaccuracies that could have occurred are any orbies over 640 pixels could have been a few pixels off in length, because we couldn't fit them completely under the microscope. I understood that orbies expand in water, but I didn't understand why that the orbies were so much smaller than the others. Why were the salt water orbies so much smaller than the other orbies?

Article posted November 4, 2011 at 05:49 PM GMT • comment (2) • Reads 138



Article posted October 20, 2011 at 06:20 PM GMT • comment • Reads 77

This year our science class did an experiment about living things and their environments. Each team had five vials each, all of them filled with one of three unknown liquids. Then, each of us added a sprinkle of substance A to vial A, substance B to vial B, etc all the way up to D. Then, we checked on the substance and recorded it's changes after ten minutes, 48 hours and ten minutes after the 48 hour mark. We looked the substances under a microscope and were shocked at what we found.

In vial A, there wasn't much happening. In vial B, the water was just really clouded with chunks of gunky looking things. In vial C, the little orbs grew huge and they were really squishy, and easy to accidentally crumble...oops. In vial D, the little seed-looking things sprouted! In vial E, it was really wierd. When we looked at it without any magnification, it just looked like red floating sand, but when we magnified it 60x, we found out what it really was! Brine shrimp!! At first we were confused because we only saw black dots, (which we later figured out was the eggs) but after we moved the microscope to a different part of the sample, we saw the creatures! It was really interesting!

Afterwards, our teacher told us what was in the vials! Material A was red sand, material B was yeast, material C was polyacryate, also known as orbies, material D was radish seeds, and material D was the brine shrimp. We also found out what our liquid was! My groups liquid was just plain water. Then, we compared our results to other groups and they were very surprising!

One of the other liquids were salt water, but nothing was living in their vials! This wasn't very surprising for the first 4 materials, but it was really weird that the brine shrimp didn't hatch/live in this liquid because a brine shrimps natural environment in in salt water! When we compared our results to the last liquid, sugar water, it was exactly the same results as ours.

I learned that environment greatly impacts if a thing can live or not! I also learned that even if a thing looks like it's not living, it still could be, like when a seed hibernates and waits for the right environment before sprouting!

Article posted October 20, 2011 at 06:20 PM GMT • comment • Reads 77



Article posted October 13, 2011 at 06:12 PM GMT • comment • Reads 61

To be actually be alive you have to be able to do certain things. Some of those things are being able to grow, being able to breathe and being able to move without any help from something else. To be alive you also have to be able to metabolize food and reproduce, but you also have to be able to die. These are the factors of a living thing!

Article posted October 13, 2011 at 06:12 PM GMT • comment • Reads 61



Article posted October 3, 2011 at 06:22 PM GMT • comment • Reads 71

       People bicker about if global warming is happening, if it's man-made, if there's something we can do. To me, global warming is happening, and we can do something. I have no idea about the whole man-made idea, but I think we are contributing to it. But, we can all help to reduce global warming by recycling, carpooling, changing your lightbulbs to more energy efficient ones and making sure lights aren't on when you leave a room. All of these help our planet, and make it easier to slow down or stop global warming before it's too late.


Article posted October 3, 2011 at 06:22 PM GMT • comment • Reads 71



Article posted September 30, 2011 at 06:02 PM GMT • comment • Reads 58

1. I have two adorable baby goats, named Emma and Zoe, that I love more than anything!



2. The only time I have ever been out of the US was when I went to Canada and I was really little.



3. My name means olive tree, but I despise olives with a passion. They are disgusting!



4. I love food with a passion!



5. Instead of having braces, I used invisalign. It was awesome.



6. After high school, I really want to go to the EATM

program in Moorpark, California. It looks really interesting!



7. I think Hawaii would be a fun place to live!







Article posted September 30, 2011 at 06:02 PM GMT • comment • Reads 58



Article posted September 29, 2011 at 06:02 PM GMT • comment (1) • Reads 69

Here is a movie my team made about the African Biome!



Article posted September 29, 2011 at 06:02 PM GMT • comment (1) • Reads 69



Article posted June 2, 2010 at 09:58 PM GMT • comment • Reads 40

Article posted June 2, 2010 at 09:58 PM GMT • comment • Reads 40



Article posted May 5, 2010 at 10:02 PM GMT • comment • Reads 43

       One thing I learned about the elastic force of a rubber band is that it is unpredictable. You cannot predict how much force will be used when you strech the rubber band because sometimes it uses 2.5 newtons of force for every 2 cm but sometimes it only goes up by .25 newtons. That is what I learned about the elastic force of a rubber band.

Article posted May 5, 2010 at 10:02 PM GMT • comment • Reads 43



Article posted April 23, 2010 at 10:14 PM GMT • comment (1) • Reads 45

Energy changes in many ways.  It first starts out as electrical energy in the outlet in your wall. Then, when the energy enters the battery, it turns into stored chemical energy. That stored chemical energy turns back into electrical energy when you connect it to a light, motor or electrical device. That is how energy changes!




 



 

Article posted April 23, 2010 at 10:14 PM GMT • comment (1) • Reads 45



Article posted March 26, 2010 at 10:01 PM GMT • comment • Reads 37

Article posted March 26, 2010 at 10:01 PM GMT • comment • Reads 37



Article posted February 4, 2010 at 02:32 AM GMT • comment • Reads 40

I saw this on BBC news and thought it would be interesting. Apparently they have a giant salamander in  Maniwa City, Japan at the Visitors Center in a tank. This salamander is called a hanzaki and is five feet and six inches long. Normally salamanders are one foot and two inches long. That's almost five times as long as an average salamander! If you're thinking that that hanzaki was big, they found a story from the 17th centuary where that salamander was about thirty-two feet and ten inches long! The link to that article is here  http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/8497330.stm     

Article posted February 4, 2010 at 02:32 AM GMT • comment • Reads 40



Article posted January 6, 2010 at 02:36 PM GMT • comment (1) • Reads 66

In November my 6th period class had to go to the grange and pull weeds. We did this because last year other 6th graders planted trees to help the nearby creek. When we got there we only did a little bit of actual pulling but instead loaded the weeds and blackberry bushes onto a tarp and then onto a trailer for the North Olympic Salmon Collition (I hope I spelled that right!) to take it away. I had fun heaving and pulling the blackberry branches from a big pile that the earlier science classes made. My only problem with pulling the weeds were that sometimes the thorms from the blackberries got through the leather gloves and pricked you in the hand. After I was done I went over to the creek and it was REALLY big! After we had loaded all of the weeds and blackberry bushes we got a group picture and headed back to class. I had a blast pulling the weeds and it was really cool that it was for a good cause!

Article posted January 6, 2010 at 02:36 PM GMT • comment (1) • Reads 66



Article posted October 28, 2009 at 10:10 PM GMT • comment • Reads 56




 






          Water pollution is a big problem these days and this is a pamphlet all about it to answer all of your questions!






 






             What is water pollution?          









Water pollution is when waste products or other substances change the characteristics of a water source. It effects living species and reduces the waters benefits. Some consequences of water pollution are that bacteria produce and form a layer of slime on fish and plants. This results in decreased oxygen and increased disease.






It also lowers reproduction rates, so fish are less healthy and have increased stress. Some sources of water pollution are farmers, fishermen, transportation, industries, pleasure boaters and recreation.






 






                               












      What are nitrates and how does it affect me?    









Nitrates are natural chemicals present in all ecosystems. It is one of the chemicals essential to plant life, but too much can be a problem to plants and animals. Nitrates affect humans because it runs through the soil and into peoples’ wells and when people drink the water it can make them sick. The safe level of nitrates in drinking water 10mg/l. If you found nitrates in your water supply, you should provide alternative drinking water supplies. You can prevent nitrates from entering your water supply by reducing the amount of fertilizer being applied to the field, fence water courses and fence livestock.                                                         









        What YOU can do to Prevent Water Pollution!









Some actions that can be taken to prevent water from becoming polluted by properly disposing of or recycling pollutants before they can contaminate water or air even more.












 







Article posted October 28, 2009 at 10:10 PM GMT • comment • Reads 56



Article posted October 25, 2009 at 02:22 AM GMT • comment (3) • Reads 59

              Cispus was so much fun!! The bus ride was about 4 hours and you only got abot 2 stops, but I had fun talking to my friends on the way there. As soon as you arrived you had an hour to unpack your bags, make your bed, and relax. Then you get together with your counselor and do whatever activitiy you had planned to do. Me and my group went on the Angel Falls Hike first. It was lots of fun! It took about a half an hour to get to Curtain Falls. It's called Curtain Falls because the waterfall is like a curtain because you stand behind it. It wish I had my disposable camera with me! Then it was the hard part. Half of the rest of the hike was either really steep uphill or really steep downhill. When you got there, it was just a trickle, but it was beautiful. Then we had dinner and did the evening activities and went to bed. the other activities I did were the Pond Hike, where we went on a short 30 minute hike, Challenge Course, where we worked together to solve problems, and we ended up balancing on a log in the air, swinging on a rope to a platform, holding on to a rope while tightrope walking between trees, being lifted up on to a platform 10 feet in the air, and climbing on a giant "spiderweb" over a river. We also went on a Mt. St. Helens Hike. It took about an hour and a half drive with one stop at Windy Ridge forlunch. I'll never forget climbing over 450 stairs to the top to see a spectacular view of Mt. St. Helens and Spirit Lake and then having to step all the way down again. When we finally got there, we took a 45 minute steep downhill hike to arrive at Spirit Lake. the whole lake was covered with logs from the Mt. St. Helens eruption that happened 29 years ago. Everyone had lots of fun hopping on the logs. 



 



                                                                     I will never forget Cispus.      I Cispus!!




 



Olivia E.

Article posted October 25, 2009 at 02:22 AM GMT • comment (3) • Reads 59



Article posted October 23, 2009 at 03:45 AM GMT • comment • Reads 62

       Mountains like Vesuvius and Mt. St. Helens have lava that has a high water/high silica content. This is a deadly combination for as the lava oozes to the surface, the gases in it quickly form bubbles that turn the lava into a red hot froth that explodes out of the ground in a searing grey cloud. There is also another lava that has a low water/low silica content. This is a very runny lava that spreads far and wide and runs long distances before cooling. This sometimes results in creating new  shield volcanos. Another lava, unlike the other ones, has a low water/ high silica content. This lava is very pasty and has a high viscocity which means it's very thick and slow. The lava slowly oozes out to form a bulbous dome that hardly moves at all. After a while it may form tall steep stratos volcanoes. The last lava has a high water/ low silica content. This lava bubbles and froths alot and sometimes comes out as a fire fountain over the vent. What also happens is that the vent spits out tiny cinders and large "bombs" of lava that cool very quickly. That's what I have for lava! Now it's time for volcanoes!


            Mt. St. Helens is a Composite volcano. These volcanos are typically tens of miles across. and ten thousand or more feet in height. they have moderately steep sides and sometimes have small craters in their summits. They consist of layers of solid lava flows mixed with layers of sand or gravel-like volcanic rock called cinders or volcanic ash. Another type of volcano is the Cinder Cone volcano. Cinder Cone volcanoes consist of loose grainy cinders and almost no lava. They are only a mile across and up to a thousand feet high. They have steep sides and usually have a small crater on top. A different type of volcano is the Shield volcano. They can be hundreds of miles across and many tens of thousands of feet high. They consist almost entirely of frozen lavas. They almost always have large craters at their summits. The Caldera volcano is very wide and isn't tall at all. They are up to tens of miles across and look like big craters. They can spew rock hundreds, and maybe even thousands of miles in all directions. Finally, last but not least, the Fissure Volcano! These volcanos are really just giant cracks in the ground. The giant cracks expel vast quanities of lava that spread far and wide to form huge pools that can cover almost anything around it. When the lava cools, the surface is completely flat. And that is My AMAZING Volcano/Lava Project.

Article posted October 23, 2009 at 03:45 AM GMT • comment • Reads 62



Article posted October 1, 2009 at 03:56 AM GMT • comment (4) • Reads 82

1. I have 12 chickens



2. My favorite color is red.



3. I have 2 little sisters.



4. I don't like olives or mushrooms.



5. I love animals!



6. The farthest I have ever been is Alaska. 



7. I think reading is awesome.



 

Article posted October 1, 2009 at 03:56 AM GMT • comment (4) • Reads 82



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