Sunday, February 16, 2014

Nashville's Adventure Science Center: Science of the Winter Olympic Games

Nashville's Adventure Science Center is a great place for kids to learn about the science behind every day activities. My kids love this place, and our family membership allows us to stop in and check out all of the special programs they host. Every month or so, there is something new. In October, for example, they sometimes showcase the science of Halloween, where you can hold creepy insects or attend a special effects workshop. The recent Maker Fair was fun as well, with all kinds of makers and builders displaying their inventions and products.

Well, yesterday's event focused on the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics. This time the Science Center simply set up various stations, allowing the kids to play and experience fun versions of Olympic sports. There was also a celebration of Russia itself, with local native Russians teaching us about their culture. It was a great experience, with some of the highlights illustrated below.

The temperature outside was in the low-20s and was perfect for curling! There was an actual curling stone to hold, and then blocks of ice to slide toward the targets. Unfortunately, we had left our coats in the car and didn't complete even the first end.

Inside, we were met by the sound of Russian music. Tables displayed information about Russia, with everything from children's toys and games to clothing and even Russian food.

The kids then tried some hockey and downhill skiing (in the form of a large, inflatable slide). Or maybe that was the luge?

But the highlight for my kids was the ski jumping. Here they were allowed to use the Science Center's new Tinker Garage, which is filled with a wide array of donated tools and supplies. They had to build a "skier" out of any parts and pieces they could find. There were balloons and sand available, as well as cutout ski figures to attach.

After a good 90 minutes of cutting, gluing, taping, filling, and measuring, the skiers were ready for their big jumps. The creations were dropped down a slope of approximately 20 feet, ultimately crashing to the floor (and often shattering to pieces). Thanks to the sand balloons, though, most landed on their skis.

Overall, it was a great day, and my kids had a lot of fun celebrating the Olympics outside of our house.

(Note: Sorry for the phone pictures!)

No comments: