Tuesday, August 10, 2010

2010 4-H National Youth Science Day

On Saturday, October 2, 1 PM - 5 PM, come join Two Rock 4-H Club Primary Science, Engineering and Technology (SET) project as we participate in the National Youth Science Day. This event will be held at Walnut Park at the Petaluma Farmers Market, 310 D Street, Petaluma, CA‎.

In 2009, the Two Rock 4-H Club started a SET project titled "Robots in the Environment". We looked at how robots interact and sense their surroundings and we made several different robots, including working underwater remotely operated vehicles.

For the 4-H NYSD event, we will have a 10' x 10' booth and have four activities related to this years theme - "Clean water, bright future"

1. The NYSD Experiment - Two Rock 4-H volunteers will lead the public through the bromothymol blue, pH experiment. We ordered 75 4-H experiment kits and will have on hand additional experiment materials as a reserve.

2. CO2 "Turtlebot" - We have a Lego's Mindstorms NXT "robot turtle" which senses CO2 levels and draws the results on a long piece of paper. the public can blow into a straw tubing and the turtlebot will measure the CO2 in their breath, then draw the results as a line on a piece of paper. Participants can sign their name on their line, at the end of the day we will have a long sheet of paper made up of hundreds of lines, each symbolic of the carbon footprint humans have on the planet.

3. "Weigh your carbon footprint" - We will have a wooden balance scale and various weights, each weight representing "tons of carbon" per capita. Participants will stack weights based on their unique carbon footprint (i.e. do they have a car, own a home, eat meat, take the car to school, etc). Next, participants will add weitghts tot he other side, each weight representing the average carbon footprint per capita from other countries. The message is that in the US, our consumption produces much more carbon than that of other countries.

4. "Eco-Robots" - 4-H kids will show off some simple robot kits that run off solar energy or wind power. Our 4-H project theme for 2010-11 is "Kid Powered Creations" and we will be building several creations that use alternative energy power (i.e. solar, wind, pneumatic, water). On October 2, we will preview some of these kits.
With help from Nxtasy.org, a Lego Mindstorms user community and Vernier Instruments, makers of environmental sensors that connect to Lego NXT, we have developed a CO2 sensing robot turtle that will measure the CO2 in your breath and draw the results on paper.

Kids will also be able to "weigh" their estimated carbon footprint and compare their results with other nations and find ways they can help reduce their carbon footprint by recycling and reusing. This is a free event to all. For more information, please contact David Bell.

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