A Note To Parents: We make every effort for Roxanne's blog to be a SAFE site for children. Whenever possible, activities are in pdf format or link to safe sites for children. Please feel free to use the information in these posts for homeschool studies! All rights reserved by author and nature photographer, Virginia Parker Staat.

Monday, May 21, 2012

A Hummingbird's Tongue

Mom's sister gave us a beautiful new hummingbird feeder when she came to visit.  Mom made some food for the hummingbirds.  She heated one cup of water and mixed in one-fourth cup of sugar.  Then she waited for it to cool before she poured it into the feeder.

We hung the feeder outside and waited.  We didn't wait long!!!  Within just a few minutes, a pair of hummingbirds flew in for a drink!  They are called Ruby-throated Hummingbirds.   The male has a beautiful red band around his neck.  They are incredible flyers!

Mom has been taking photos of the hummingbirds.  In one photo, we saw the hummingbird's long tongue.  We did some research and learned that a hummingbird flicks his tongue into the nectar about 20 times per second.  That is FAST!!!

Hummingbirds are fascinating little birds.  They are the world's tiniest bird.  They are also the only bird known to fly backward.  Their wings beat 1200 times per second... PER SECOND!!!  Wow!

To learn more about hummingbirds, just click here:

Here's an article on how to attract hummingbirds to your yard:

If you would like to make a hummingbird feeder, here's a great link:

Here are two fun hummingbird activities:

Friday, May 4, 2012

Super Moon!

Super Moon 2012

We're going to have a SUPER MOON this weekend!  Saturday evening (May 5), the moon will be bigger and brighter than any other full moon this year!

Why is it a super moon?  Our moon looks big or small depending on where it is on it's path around earth.  One side of the moon's path is closer to earth than the other.  The closer path is called the "perigee" path.  

The best time to look at our super moon will be when it rises.  NASA scientists say that the moon will reach the closest path to earth at 11:34 pm Eastern Daylight Time.  I sure hope that I'm awake to see it!  It is suppose to look 14 percent bigger and 30 percent brighter than other moons this year!  Do you think that you'll be able to sleep with all that extra light coming from the moon?

Did you know that you can take a photo of the moon with free online telescope?  Just go to http://mo-www.harvard.edu/OWN/. You will need to type in your email address and a little personal information, so please ask your mom, dad, or teacher to help you.  (For more information, check out our Thursday, November 5, 2009, post called "Beautiful Moon.")  The moon photo on this post was taken with the OWN telescope.  We'll post a photo of the super moon after we receive it!

If you click on this site, you can see the phases of the moon moving in its phases in super speed:

NOTE:  This video makes me sick when I watch it... the phases of the moon go by so fast that I feel like I'm on a roller coaster!!!!

For more information about our moon, check out this site:  http://lunar.gsfc.nasa.gov/images/outreach/62217main_Moon_Lithograph.pdf