Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Florida: Sugar Cane

Sugar Cane is a has been commercially grown in southern Florida since the early 1900's. Economically, it is a very important crop in Florida. Today, we studied sugar.

A couple of Florida sugar websites:

We read:
From Cane to Sugar by Roberta Basel
Sugar by O. B. Gregory
Beginning to End Cane to Sugar by Julie Murray

Arin colored a picture of Florida.

We put four types of sugar on a plate - granulated, powdered, brown, and raw (turbinado). We looked at the different size crystals and then took a taste test of each type of sugar. I asked Arin which one she liked best and of course she said all of them!

We also made sugar glitter, which is just sugar colored with food coloring. Then, Arin put glue all over paper and sprinkled the sugar glitter onto the glue. Some of the glitter melted into the glue, but Arin didn't mind. This kept her busy for a very long time.

We also had fun building towers with sugar cubes. Arin was able to stack eight cubes before it fell over.

Next, I asked Arin if she thought that more sugar cubes would melt in cold water or in hot water. Arin said hot water. I asked her why she thought that. She said, "because it has to!" She was right. We put in one cube at a time - first into cold tap water and then into hot tap water. We should have used less water because this took forever and Arin eventually got bored with it. Twenty sugar cubes melted into the cold water and we stopped at thirty in the hot water, although I think the hot water would have melted more than that.

Next, we started our rock candy. Arin asked about this all day long. She can't believe that we are making our own lollipops. She kept asking me if it was done. I told her it'd be seven days. She counted to seven and said, "ok is it done?" I told her, no seven days, not seven seconds, so then she counted to eight and asked if she could eat it now. Silly little girl. We used this recipe. We used vanilla to flavor the rock candy.

For our last project, we made a sugar scrub using a recipe that we saw here on Chasing Cheerios. We didn't have any peppermint extract or peppermint oil, so we used orange essential oils instead (which is really better since we are studying FL). Then, we took turns using it on each other's feet - although this probably would have been better to do in the bath - but Arin thought it was great and Ella was curiously watching.

We also read some more of our chapter book, Freddy Goes to Florida. Arin was not at all interested in this book today. Also, throughout the day, I quiz her about the state's nickname and about where sugar grows and how it grows, etc.

Tomorrow we plan on learning about the state bird - the mockingbird.

1 comment:

Ruth Chowdhury said...

How fun! What kid would NOT want to learn about sugar?! lol You are so creative. I gotta pick your brain sometime... :) You definitely inspire me!