Recycled Roads

In California, a company called TechniSoil is working to repave the roads with plastic. It is an expensive process, since they need special equipment to extract and grind the topmost 3 to 6 inches of asphalt. Repaving a single lane mile would require 42 truckloads of new material hauled out to California. Each lane requires the equivalent of 150,000 water bottles, and that would make a huge difference to the earth’s pollution if California and other states pave most of their roads like this. The article also says that the plastic is more resistant to potholes and cracking, and last 3 times longer than roads with standard asphalt.  Even thought doing this would cost a lot of money, it would also save money with the recycling and the potholes and cracks. The standard process requires heat, but the new process works cold, saving more energy as well. 

One reason why I think that this is a really good idea is that it will reduce significantly the pollution in the ocean and on land, which is really important to me. One of the main reasons that many ocean animals are dying is because they are swallowing PLASTIC, and I think that this will really help with that. Also, like the the article said, plastic can take centuries to compose, so we could reuse it so it wont gunk up the earth for centuries while we wait for it to decompose.  Also, this will be good for our roads. The article said that this will make our roads stronger, and while this process will be expensive to do, it will also save money in the long haul. All in all, I think that this process will really help the earth. It will also help us too.

QUESTIONS

  • Is this happening in other countries too?
  • How long will this take to do all of the U.S if all the states do it?
  • How does this process actually work?

Ice Cream!

Today, the entire class made homemade ice cream. The ingredients that we used are milk, sugar, snow, and a special type of ice cream salt. We mixed the sugar and milk, then went outside and got some snow and mixed it with the milk – sugar mix. Then we poured it into cups and then we got the ice cream. We also learned about the  endothermic and exothermic processes. An endothermic process is when an energy absorbs into a closed system. An exothermic process is basically the opposite, when a system has a process or reaction that releases energy into it’s surroundings.

I was in a group with Maddy and Analie, we went outside, grabbed the snow, and started to shake the substance around to make ice cream. At first we were having problems with it because it wasn’t freezing, and then we were able to get it colder. What was satisfying for me was the process of making it. It was coo to see how you could make ice cream. And, the result was great. When we were gathering the snow for the ice cream, Shane said that the snow was about 30 degrees, meaning that the snow was warmer than the air.  I think that this was one of my favorite projects so far.

QUESTIONS

  • How do people make ice cream in the shops, because I think it’s different from this.
  • How did people discover the two processes?
  • Who created Ice cream? They are a genius.

 

Lava Lake

19 days ago, an article was posted about Hawaii’s Kilauea volcanic eruption created a lava lake.  The volcano had been erupting constantly for almost three decades, from 1983 to 2018. It had stopped producing lava for almost two years now, and many people believed that it was over. Then on December 20th, 2020, the volcano started to produce large amounts of lava for around 11 days.  As of December 31st, 2020, the volcano had ejected over 27 million cubic meters. That is enough to fill over 800 Olympic sized swimming pools! The lava replaced an existing lake with lava lake that is almost 600 feet deep. In 2018, the molten lave flowed through the town, destroying almost 700 homes.

I chose this article because biology really interest me. I like learning about pollution and habitats mostly, but I like volcanoes as well. I think this particular article is also important so we can understand volcanoes better in the future. For example, I didn’t know that a volcano could continue erupting for almost three decades. I also didn’t know that a volcano could spurt out that much lava. That’s what I like about biology. We can use things like these to prevent as much damage from volcanoes in the future, so we will be safer.

QUESTIONS:

  • does any animal live on volcanoes, or very close to them?
  • what is the biggest lava lake in the world?
  • do you think that in the future people will be able to go to the center of the earth?

Mass Over Volume

Before we went on that short virtual school time, we were learning about mass, volume, and density. One

of the activities that we did was we had three different items that we would drop in water, and then see what the water level was after the object was in the water. Before that we would record what level the water was at before we dropped the object in the water. We had partners for this, and mine was Morley, and she did one side of the paper, and I did the other side. The day after that, we had a review to see what we know about mass, volume, and density. I think that I did pretty well on the review, most of it made sense to me. We also watched a short LEGO animation video about Archimedes and the “solid” gold crown. The king was gifted a “solid” gold crown, but Archimedes didn’t believe that it was solid gold, and that the king had been duped. 

After that, crystal and Elizabeth said that a person in our class was getting tested for Corona, so we had to do virtual for a few days, which was worse that I thought, because I was so used to regular school. For this activity, I think that I participated fairly well in this assignment. I think that I could’ve paid attention more, but I think I did fairly well. In the partner project, I would have done each side of the paper together, so that I knew everything instead of one part for the review.  I really liked the partner project and the video, it was really cool to learn about mass, volume, and density.

QUESTIONS

  • Who created mass, volume, and density?
  • What other kind of experiments could we do with them?
  • Have any other stories like the tale of Archimedes ever happened?

Owls vs. Crows

Today we played this really fun game called Owls vs. Crows. We were separated into two groups, one owls, and one crows. We were asked a bunch of science based questions like ” abiotic is living organisms”, and if the answer was false, the crows would chase the owls, and if the answer was true, then it was vise versa. We played this at the very end of science, like the last ten minutes. The time before that we were working on our biomes ( last blog ), and then took a walk and played the game. There were safe zones where the other team couldn’t go, and anyone who was tagged outside of the safe zones became part of the other team. The team with the most would win. It was kind of like a tag sort of thing.

Like I said before, we had worked on our projects just before we had come down there, and I talked about that in the last blog. I am a little worried that we aren’t able to finish the website in time, but as long as Emma or me doesn’t get distracted, then I think it will be fine.

QUESTIONS

  • Is Owls vs. Crows a real game?
  • Will we do another project like this biome one?
  • Will we do another game like this?

Current Biome Project

Today is December 9th, and we are getting pretty far on the project. The box is almost done, but we really need to focus on the website. Emma made a mushroom tree for it and we all thought it was funny. Anyway, I like creating my own website a lot because I’ve never done that before and it’s really cool how you can see how some other people do it. Many other people are getting far on the project, mostly with the box I’ve noticed. Today we switched who worked on what and I think that helped a lot because I wasn’t AS distracted. I did work with a bunch of other people so I did get distracted a lot. Shane says that we are gonna move on soon, so me and Emma can’t get distracted any more if we wanna finish this thing. But overall, I love working on this, though sometimes the website can get boring.

like I said before, I did get distracted a lot, and that thing was annoying, because I didn’t get as much done as I should have. Emma did a good job on the project and the website, and I think with one more day we can finish the model.

QUESTIONS

  • Who founded wix?
  • What is the next thing we will work on?
  • What kinds of websites are on wix?

Start of Biome Project

We just started on a biome project with a partner. My partner was Emma.  We picked a biome out of a bowl and me and her got rainforest. We each had to pick one animal and one plant in the rainforest, and I picked the giant water lily for my plant and an ocelot for my animal. Emma picked monkey brush for her plant and a boa constrictor for her animal. We will have to create a diorama of the biome with the animals and plants included. We also will create a website on this site called wix about our biome, plants, and animals. WE have planed out what the diorama will look like, and have started to divide up what parts of the website each of us will be doing. 

Shane gave us a google doc for our website, and it has questions for our website. On our website, we will answer things like, “how much rain does your biome get, or what are some ways that humans depend on it.” We have to answer the same types of questions for our animals and plants as well. I really think that I’m going to like this project, because we are learning about the amazon rainforest while also doing a model, which I love. Since we just started, we haven’t really started on much yet, but we are doing the website if we don’t have enough supplies to do the diorama. 

QUESTIONS

  • What will happen if humans cut down the entire amazon rainforest?
  • How many species of animals live in the amazon?
  • Why does the amazon get so much rain every year?

10/22 The Carbon Cycle

Yesterday, we all learned about the Carbon Cycle and the Nitrogen Cycle. We were separated into groups and my group played a game based on the Carbon cycle. You would roll a dice, and you would move to a different spot on the Carbon Cycle  depending on what you rolled. I started at the ocean surface, went to atmosphere, went to plants, then, soil, then fossil fuels, etc. It was really fun for me because we got to kinda experience what the carbon molecules go through in the Carbon Cycle. We also wrote down where we went in the cycle, and after made a little story out of it. It was super fun to play and experience.

 Besides the game, I did learn some things about the Carbon Cycle. For example, I learned that 8 

10/5 Glossy Buckthorn

Last week, we learned a lot about invasive species. One day, we all went on a walk around campus pointing out the invasive species that we saw and learning about how they work in the environment. We were able to rip up some like glossy buckthorn or grapevine, and that was really fun. I learned a lot about how glossy buckthorn transfers their seeds through birds. The plant gives off smells that the birds like, and when they eat the berries, they feel sick and have diarrhea. When they do, that spreads the seeds and then the glossy buckthorn can reproduce. The thing that is really annoying about this is that because the birds keep eating the berries and spreading the seeds, then it nearly impossible to get rid of them, and we are stuck with them forever.

 

I really liked this project. It was really interesting to learn about glossy buckthorns and how they have changed the environment ( for the worse ). I think that one way that I can use this in my life is that even if plants like the glossy buckthorn look pretty, then still don’t plant them or spread them because they are bad for the environment and the food web. When I learned about this, I was actually surprised by how fast glossy buckthorn messed up the environment. Some invasive species, like fragrant water lilies, take five years to grow a 15 foot circle of lilies, and the glossy buckthorn only needed 1 to 2 years to spread ALL OVER Michigan.  I think that I participated pretty well on this project, but I think that I did get distracted with pulling out glossy buckthorns. I think that one thing that I could have done differently is that I should have paid more attention and not pulling out plants.

QUESTIONS:

  • What are people doing to stop the spread of glossy buckthorns?
  • If the birds get poisoned from eating the berries, then why do the birds keep eating them?
  • What were glossy buckthorns natural predators in their native habitat?