Thanks to Education World for use of my Mrs. Waffenschmidt illustration.

Thanks to Education World for use of my Mrs. Waffenschmidt illustration.
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Saturday, March 29, 2014

Blobs of Gelatinous Balloons Instead of Plastic Water Bottles?

Almost 50 billion(yes BILLION) plastic water bottles are thrown away each year! An edible gelatinous balloon may be just the answer to this growing problem. Called Ooho,the sphere shaped containers are made from a brown algae. Researchers say the membrane blobs can be made in different sizes and that even the labels would be made from rice paper. With a double lining of membrane, the labels would be placed between the layers so no glue would be needed. The current design requires you biting into the sphere to drink the water.And, if you don't wish to EAT the water container, it is biodegradable.

What do you think about this water container?
What might be a question you'd have to ask about the design?
About how many plastic water bottles do YOU use a week?
Give 2 reasons why people use plastic water bottles?

Did you know that the USA uses the most bottled water containers?
Did you know that only one out of six plastic water bottles is recycled?
It is estimated that the average American uses 167 plastic water bottles a year.
Scientists say it takes about 700 years for a plastic bottle to begin to decompose.
Photograph from

Perhaps, you may find this bell ringer of interest to use with your students.


Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Penny for your thoughts...

Not an academic question but I was just wondering. Do you pick up a penny if you spot one on the sidewalk?

I do....and I still say the saying," Find a penny, pick it up. All day long, you'll have good luck."  I thought I remember in order to be a recipient of the good luck, the penny had to be "heads up".  I admit,  I used to flip the "found" penny until it landed heads but now, I just pick up the sad, lost little piece of currency and take it home.
What do you do?

Did you Know?
There are approximately 150 billion pennies in circulation.

Did you know it costs more to make a penny that its value?

Abraham Lincoln was the first president to have his likeness on a coin. He likeness is also the only portrait turned to the right instead of the left.

The official name for the penny is the CENT(or "one cent piece").

Penny comes from the English word, "pence."

A rare PENNY sold for $1.7 million dollars.

Want a shinny penny. Place a penny in a solution of vinegar and 1 teaspoon of salt.

Quotes using pennies:

" A penny for your thoughts."

"A penny saved is a penny earned." Ben Franklin

Sunday, March 16, 2014

What name would you give a blimp?

Goodyear has announced a contest to name their new Blimp.  You have until April 4 to submit a suggestion.  If your suggestion for the name is the winner, you will get to use the blimp for one entire day! Click here to learn more:

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Time Travel....Where would you go?

Time travel. Wouldn't it be amazing if one day people actually could travel back in time to witness historic events? It got me thinking, if you could take a trip back in time, what historic event would you like to see?  

I think being at Kitty Hawk, on December 17, 1903, and witnessing Wilbur and Orville make their historic flight would be pretty interesting.  

On a personal historic event, I'd love to travel back to see my grandmother's family confectionary shop in Porrentruy, Switzerland, and go inside to taste some of their treats(such as their eclairs). Three years ago, I went to see the building(which is still there) and walked the cobble street where my grandma walked as a young woman. It was really an amazing feeling! Today, the store front has been changed and it's a tavern, but the upper levels are still the same despite about 100 years! 

What historic event and personal event might you like to use time travel to witness?

Might be a question to ask students.

Picture of me outside the store where Bollinger's Confectionary Shop used to be and me holding a photograph of my grandma and two of her sisters outside the shop around 1918.