Tuesday 5 June 2012

Solar Oven (Our Week Outdoors Part I)

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My attempts to have some outdoor play come rain or shine are continuing, but I've decided to split them into two posts as if I cover the whole week it's sooooooo long!  But, yep we managed another week playing outdoors everyday - yey!  Here's what we got up to, part one.......

Monday May 28th - The weather was great, so when we picked Bud up from Pre-school and he decided to 'accidently' go down the wrong path I thought 'what the heck' we're not in any rush so we went off exploring heaps of footpaths that we'd never been down and really enjoyed ourselves.

Then when we (eventually!) got home we took the play into the back garden and I gave the boys some coloured ice cubes for their water table.  This was inspired by a post from The Imagination Tree, they had stuff stuck inside the ice which we'll do another day, but I saw the post and thought 'that'll do for this afternoon' and filled the ice cube tray with a bit of food coloured water.

And what did my lovely boys want to do with it?  Eat it or smash it!  I decided against the eating as their water comes from our garden water butt, so I made a few more ice cubes for their drinks later (to keep the peace!) and let them smash the ice cubes to their hearts content!

Tuesday - Bubble Snakes!!  These were awesome and I confess to blowing a HUGE amount of bubbles myself, for the children you understand!  I saw the idea originally on Come Together Kids and pinned it for a sunny day (it's also recently been done on Fit Kids Clubhouse).

It was super easy.  You take a plastic bottle, snip off the bottom, place a flannel / wash cloth over the bottom the tie it on with string or a rubber band.  Then you make a bubble mixture with washing up liquid and water.  Dip the cloth in the bubble mixture and blow!

And these are the results!  You can make really long bubble snakes with a lot of puff.

Or, you can catch it in a plastic cone and pretend its and ice cream, or use it for washing the toy car which is what my boys did!

Wednesday - We decided to harness the Sun's rays to cook something, what did we cook?  Chocolate of course!!  The idea originally came from Totally Tots, but if you go on pinterest there are a few other sources out there.  Plus a full tutorial is on Disney's Family Fun website.

The other posts on this I've seen use a pizza box, but we used a chocolate box.  You snip open the lid to create a flap and cover it in foil, also cover the bottom of the box with foil, then a piece of black paper, finally put cling film (food wrap) over the top of the bottom part of the box then put the lid on top.  Your food sits on top of the cling film.  If that doesn't make sense follow the Disney tutorial which is way better than mine!

The idea is that the lid reflects the suns rays onto the box and I'm guessing that the cling film traps the heat in the bottom of the box.  If you're North American this is your opportunity to make Smores, I only know what these are due to a Barney video as you can't buy Graham Crackers in the UK.  So, we did our own British version..... rich tea biscuits with a chunk of chocolate - mmmmm!

Would the chocolate have melted anyway?  I'm thinking 'yes' I'm not sure how effective our oven was, but did we enjoy the making - 'yes'.  Then did we enjoy the eating - 'we certainly did!'

Pop back tomorrow for part two of our week outdoors when you can find out all about our outdoor canvas!

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  1. Your bubble snakes look great! They are definitely easy to make, and reusable. Our bubble makers are still getting good use over here at the Clubhouse. I am excited about the solar oven! We've seen it in a few places, and I finally got us a pizza box to try it soon. Thanks for sharing your outdoor adventures :)

  2. The solar oven looks like so much fun! Can't wait to give it a try (:

  3. How clever - I definitely want to try the solar oven. I've heard you can make mini pizzas this way (on tortillas, pita or english muffins).

  4. lots of fun activities! we are trying to cook a pizza next week! thanks for linking up to tip-toe thru tuesday!

  5. Hi. I saw your link on TGIF. My 10 yr old son is always looking for fun and cool projects and I am always hoping they will be somewhat easy to accomplish. This solar oven looks the ideal project for us!

  6. What a great week! Love the idea of sharing all of your outdoor play throughout the week. Our outdoor play always seems so simple and silly to me but it would be fun to create a post to show all of what we do each week!
    Thanks for sharing this on the outdoor play party. This is my first time to stop by and I am so glad that I did.

  7. We used solar ovens to make s'mores (for 28 students) back when I taught second grade. We had a problem with the ants trying to steal our chocolate. I forgot about this activity until you reminded me of it. I'll have to try it with my daughter during her upcoming sun unit. It was so much fun ... and with the Texas heat the snack was ready in no time at all. Looks like some great, fun activities. Have a great day!

  8. What a lot of fun!! Looks like you had a great week outside. Thanks for sharing at Sharing Saturday!!

  9. LOVE your solar oven! What a FUN experience. I still remember making one for the Science Fair growing up =-) This is such a fun idea! I featured this at TGIF this week - http://www.livinglifeintentionally.blogspot.com/2012/06/tgif-linky-party-34.html - Thanks for linking up & I look forward to seeing you again this week!
    Beth =)

  10. We will totally be trying those bubble snakes! Love all the great ideas. Thanks for linking up to the Outdoor Play Party!


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