We all hear this buzz term in conversation when we are talking about education these days. Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) is more important than ever. I recently had a chance to experience firsthand how you can motivate kids to get interested in these important subjects at the Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science, let me explain.
This country wouldn’t be where it is if it wasn’t for the inventors, the astronauts, the engineers and of course, the scientists that have made our progress happen. To keep up in today’s competitive world, we are going to need all of the above and the younger kids get interested in these subjects, the better.
We went to the Frost Science Museum to see Nick Uhas, the host of the Nickipedia YouTube channel. He hosted about 300 eager parents and kids at the Baptist Health South Florida Gallery.
As you may have guessed, Nick’s channel is about science and he conducts all kinds of cool experiments that leave you with your mouth open.
The room was packed with parents and eager kids ready to see the show. Nick demonstrated a few cool experiments that truly make kids enjoy science and see it in a new entertaining light. We even brought Olivia, our 10-month-old daughter because, it’s never too early to start learning about science! #WomenInSTEM
Nick showed us how using liquid nitrogen, you can freeze fruits in just a few seconds and how they shatter into a thousand pieces when you hit them with a bat. The demos were definitely a lot of fun, kids of all ages went on stage and used the bat to smash watermelons, apples and onions.
The next demonstration was one of my favorites. We’ve all seen how inhaling helium makes our voices sound like chipmunks. Helium is lighter than air, so sound travels faster and that’s why you can hear that super high pitched voice. What I didn’t know is that using sulfur hexafluoride gas causes the opposite effect. This gas is 5 times denser than air. It’s so dense that it actually falls down instead of going up. Sound moves differently in a denser gas, meaning that the vibrations made from your vocal cords move slower and that creates a super cool effect. All of the sudden, you sound like Barry White! That unmistakable low voice that seems to have been slowed down by a computer, all of it by just inhaling a gas.
Sometimes science is cool in unexpected ways, imagine poking a giant spear through a huge nylon bag filled with water and no water leaking. Why does this happen? Nick explained that these bags are made from a polymer and polymers try to keep their original shape. That’s why when the hole is pierced, the material hugs the spear and seals any leaks. Pretty neat.
Check out his experiment in slow motion of mixing hot water with liquid nitrogen.
If you haven’t gone yet, be sure to check out the MeLaβ at the Baptist Health South Florida Gallery, it’s setup with different zones that explain the different areas of life with the theme, Choose your adventure.
There is a learn zone that demonstrates brain cognition, different brain functions and how our brain works when we laugh or solve a puzzle. The exercise zone features the heart and different technologies like robotics for prosthetics. There is also a relax zone that has interactive relaxation games and you can even measure your brain activity.
Overall, we had a lot of fun at the show and really enjoyed Nick, his entertaining style and of course, it’s always refreshing to see kids interested in science.