Tuesday, August 30, 2011


Things are going to be CHANGE. But more about that later.  Right now, I am writing my Tales for Tots curriculum for work.  On the schedule for September are... 
Tuesday September 6th
How Do Dinosaurs Clean Their Rooms? by Jane Yolen and Mark Teague
Wednesday September 7th
Is Your Mama a Llama? by Deborah Guarino
Tuesday September 13th
Wednesday September 14th
Tuesday September 20th
Wednesday September 21st
Tuesday September 27th
How Do Dinosaurs Say Good Night? by Jane Yolen and Mark Teague
Wednesday September 28th
What Makes a Rainbow? by Betty Ann Schwartz

I am most excited for Zack's Alligator because we will make cute alligator magnets out of clothespins and What Makes a Rainbow? because we are doing MAGIC MILK!  I love magic milk!

Have you ever done it?
Magic Milk

Materials needed:

Whole Milk
Plastic Take-Out containers or Deep Plastic dinner plates
Food coloring
Dawn Dish Soap

With just a touch of your little Q-Tip Wand, you can make EXPLOSIONS of color!

1. Pour enough milk in the dinner plate to completely cover the bottom and allow it to settle.

2. Add one drop of each of the four colors of food coloring - red, yellow, blue, and green - to the milk. Keep the drops close together in the center of the plate of milk.

3. Find a clean cotton swab for the next part of the experiment. Predict what will happen when you touch the tip of the cotton swab to the center of the milk. It's important not to stir the mix just touch it with the tip of the cotton swab.

4. Place a drop of liquid dish soap (the Dawn brand works well) on the tip of the cotton swab. Place the soapy end of the cotton swab back in the middle of the milk and hold it there for 10 to 15 seconds. Look at that burst of color! It's like the 4th of July in a bowl of milk: mini-explosions of color.

5. Add another drop of soap to the tip to the cotton swab and try it again. Experiment with placing the cotton swab at different places in the milk. Notice that the colors in the milk continue to move even when the cotton swab is removed. What makes the food coloring in the milk move?

How does it work?

Milk is mostly water but it also contains vitamins, minerals, proteins, and tiny droplets of fat suspended in solution. Fats and proteins are sensitive to changes in the surrounding solution (the milk).

When you add soap, the weak chemical bonds that hold the proteins in solution are altered. It's a free for all! The molecules of protein and fat bend, roll, twist, and contort in all directions. The food color molecules are bumped and shoved everywhere, providing an easy way to observe all the invisible activity. At the same time, soap molecules combine to form a micelle, or cluster of soap molecules. These micelles distribute the fat in the milk.

This rapidly mixing fat and soap causes swirling and churning where a micelle meets a fat droplet. When there are micelles and fat droplets everywhere the motion stops, but not until after you've enjoyed the show!

There's another reason the colors explode the way they do. Since milk is mostly water, it has surface tension like water. The drops of food coloring floating on the surface tend to stay put. Liquid soap wrecks the surface tension by breaking the cohesive bonds between water molecules and allowing the colors to zing throughout the milk. What a party!

Repeat the experiment using water in place of milk. Will you get the same eruption of color? Why or why not? What kind of milk produces the best swirling of color: skim, 1%, 2%, or whole milk? Why?

Additional Info

Detergent, because of its bipolar characteristics (hydrophilic on one end and hydrophobic on the other), weakens the milk's bonds by attaching to its fat molecules. The detergent's hydrophilic end dissolves in water and its water-fearing end attaches to a fat globule in the milk.
So, ANYWAYS, things, they are a-changin'. Not just at work. Today I had 2 appointments.  One with Larry the Cucumber at Vocational Rehabilitation and the other with my therapist, Jan Levenson-Gould. My first was Larry the Cucumber.  Very nice, but blunt and informed, man. 

We talked about the job market, how much I could expect to make vs. how much I had taken out in student loans.  I was hoping VR could help PAY for school... apparently they can't help much at expensive private schools like Broadview.  If I was going to a state school they might be able to, like, cover the books that the Pell grant didn't.  And so we talked about that...

Not just because of the money, though.  Because my arm/spine thing, is hurting still and not healing yet.  And vet tech is a really physical major. A really physical CAREER.  And I am the kind of klutzy person who GETS HURT.

So, I might love animals, but maybe it is a bad move for me to be a vet tech.  

And the money is an issue.  Not just the school cost, but the fact that Vet Techs make around 25,000 a year... where as ASL Interpreters are, on average $38,850... but can be much much more.  As in, like $40 an hour. (I currently am at the top of my game at Thanksgiving Point at 8).  If I were to go back to ASL and Deaf Studies (which is what I was majoring in at UVU (then UVSC) back before the headaches began), become a 'terp, well, maybe I would have money to pay for a home of my own, have the pets I want, maybe do some rescuing.

Not to mention even if the economy gets even worse, there is a chance vet tech jobs will be even harder to come by... whereas social programs that need interpreters will still be needed.

The other thing is the education itself.  With the Vet Tech program I get a Vet Tech degree.  Which is good ONLY if I really become a vet tech. It's not a bachelor's degree.  But I CAN get a bachelor's degree in ASL and Deaf Studies.  A bachelor's I can do something else with, if I choose not to be an interpreter... a bachelor's I can continue with to get my Master's of Library Sciences so that IF a Children's Librarian job (ie: dream job) ever opened up, I could actually get it.  If it never did, I'd still have ASL.

So, in the next 2 weeks (because that's the date for UVU) I need to decide for sure, but I think I am going to change.  Change Majors... majorly.  Change majors, change schools, change plans, change identities... okay, so not that last one. ;)

BIIIIG Changes.  Kind of freaking terrified?

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