Science with Sarah: A Sneak Peek.

My name is Sarah Speight, and you guessed it, I have been running Science with Sarah at the Petawawa Public Library! I am a Geologist by trade and have spent the last 15+ years studying Science during my academic career. Recently, I successfully defended my Ph.D. thesis in Earth Sciences! Each week in Science with Sarah we have been running experiments and exploring different areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM). At this point, we have covered quite a few topics! Some of our favourites include rock and mineral identification, colour experiments, STEM building challenges, and number games. Check out our Space and Stars program below!

Exploring Space and Stars!

During this Science with Sarah session, we worked on a few different experiments to explore things found in space. We started by asking the question “what do you see in space?”. The children had a lot of different answers! The moon, stars, planets, darkness, spaceships, and the sun are a few things we talked about. We then worked on three experiments:

  • Making moon craters
  • Building constellations
  • Galaxy (magic) milk experiment

Making Moon Craters

Setup on the floor was a tray of flour and ground, coloured chalk (brown and red). This was used to simulate the moon’s surface. Next, all the children lined up to take turns dropping different objects onto the “moon’s” surface! We used marbles, styrofoam balls, shells, beads and other objects of different sizes and weights. We even tallied up our results and measured each crater. Take a look at the pictures below to see some of our craters and results!

A close-up view of our “moon surface” showing a few of the craters we made. The impact craters are highlighted by dashed circles. We even had one marble that created two craters!
An enlarged view of a large impact crater that the children made. The large marble impacted with enough force to create a spray of ejecta material!
Our friends Reese and Keira (above) worked hard listing the objects we used and tallying our crater sizes!

Building Constellations

While the kids waited to make their craters, a table was set up with supplies to make constellations! They used pipe cleaners to connect marshmallows. By looking at the different examples of constellations, they were able to make the same designs and some that were totally unique!

Galaxy (Magic) Milk Experiment

Lastly, the children were all set up with plates of milk and cream, food colouring, cotton swabs, and small bowls of dish soap. They started by slowly adding drops of food colouring all over their milk. Once they were happy with their design, the fun began! The children then dipped a cotton swab in dish soap and touched it to an area of milk to see the reaction. The food colouring immediately starts to swirl and move across the milk. Take a look at the images and short video below to see what happened next!

Here we can see a few of our friends adding food colouring to the milk and cream mixture, getting their dish soap ready, and even making the reaction happen!
The final result is a galaxy of magic milk on a plate! The children were really excited to show each other their different creations, all made with a few household ingredients.
See our milk, dish soap, and food colouring reaction in action!


Are you interested in doing these experiments yourself? Follow the links below for some inspiration and instructions!

Making moon craters:

Building constellations:

Galaxy (magic) milk:

Published by Petawawa Public Library

The history of the Petawawa Public Library can be traced back to 1973 when what is now known as the Town of Petawawa consisted of two separate municipalities: the Village of Petawawa and the Township of Petawawa. In 1997, with the amalgamation of the Township and Village, the new Town of Petawawa became home to the “Petawawa Public Library”. Today, the Petawawa Public Library continues to grow. It employs full-time and part-time staff and continues to rely on the help of loyal volunteers to serve over 7000 active members.

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