this week’s adventure
The idea of making simple materials magical by combining them in different ways has fascinated us humans for centuries. In Medieval times, alchemists tried to transform basic metals into silver or gold. In folklore, our tales are full of cackling witches cooking up powerful, bubbling brews. And in fantasy, wizards like Severus Snape create arcane potions that can do extraordinary things. Today, people around the world still mix up magical new creations, but we use different words to describe them—words like "scientist," "chemist," or even..."chef".
This week at Camp Kinda, it's your turn to let your inner mad scientist loose. By the end of the week, you'll understand what everything in the universe is made of and start to see how different materials and substances interact. Along the way, you'll mix up some potions of your own, meet real-life mad scientists, and explore cool stuff like slime, plasma, and Oobleck. So grab your wands, goggles, aprons, and jars, because we feel some chemical wizardry coming on!
what you’ll need
- A computer, tablet, or mobile phone and access to the internet
- Pens, crayons, markers, or colored pencils
- Food coloring
- Hydrogen peroxide (3% or 6%)
- Dish soap
- An empty plastic bottle
- A plain white t-shirt
- White vinegar
- An old towel
- A bucket or pot
- A rubber band
- A reusable squirt bottle or water bottle you can pierce at the top
- A plastic grocery bag
- A bottle of diet cola
- A package of Mentos
- A large clear jar
- Vegetable oil
- White glue (like Elmers)
- Baking soda
- Eye drops or contact lens solution with either boric acid or sodium borate in the ingredients
- A funnel (optional)
- Ice (optional)
weekly family activity
Bring this week's theme to life by making your own chemical reaction—in the form of ice cream! You can find all the ingredients at your local grocery store. We're sure this week's family activity won't disappoint your brain or your taste buds. Here's how to do it. Need another option? Check out the movie Flubber and watch what happens when a quirky chemist allows his creativity to run wild.
this week’s content builder:
Raven Foster is a proud New Orleanian and former 5th grade science teacher who currently serves as a director at OneGoal, an organization dedicated to closing the degree divide by providing resources and support to increase post-secondary enrollment and completion.
See Previous Weeks
Humans have been dancing for at least 9,000 years. (Whew, that's a lot of popping and locking.) And if you think about it, it's kinda... weird. Dancing can be social or ceremonial, like when we're at parties or weddings, and it can even be competitive, like the challenges we see everywhere on TV or social media. What about music drives us to get up and move our bodies around in strange ways? How can that one impulse lead to such different dances, from ballet and ballroom to line-dancing and disco? Why do certain dance moves catch on and spread like crazy, like the floss, while others don't?
You have probably heard of Anne Frank, the girl whose diary helped give voice to the suffering of millions during World War II, or Greta Thunberg, who has called out leaders around the globe for failing to act on climate change. But did you know that the Braille alphabet for the blind was created by a French teenager? Have you met Marley Dias, who is bringing thousands of books with Black main characters to libraries across America?
Comics Crash Course
Some of the best stories of all time have something in common: They hook us with drawings as well as words. Comics and graphic novels have introduced us to characters ranging from Black Panther and Captain Marvel to Captain Underpants and Greg Heffley, everyone's favorite "wimpy" kid. This week at Camp Kinda, we're zapping ourselves into the world of comics and visual expression with professional author and illustrator Jarrett Lerner.
Enter the Rainforest
Rainforests are lush places of marvel and mystery. You probably already know that rainforests get a lot of rain. But did you know that they are home to more than 5 million species of plants, animals, and insects? That's half of all the species on earth—and we're still discovering new creatures and plants in the rainforests all the time! And while rainforests only cover about 2 percent of the planet's surface, they produce 20 percent of the world's oxygen, which is why they are considered the "lungs of the planet."
ART. The word might make you think of hushed museums lined with Very Serious Paintings, or baffling splashes of color that look like something your little brother brought home from preschool. But the truth is, creating art is one of our most basic human instincts, and despite art's fancy-schmancy reputation, anybody can make it—including you!
Legendary Lands and Creatures
For centuries, civilizations have dreamt up whimsical or forbidding places, shrouded in mystery and lost in time. We’ve filled these worlds with mythical creatures and fantastical beasts who could do things beyond our own abilities like breathing fire, transforming into bats, or healing wounds. From tales like Harry Potter that made us fall in love with magic to the Chronicles of Narnia that used animals like talking lions to protect us from evil, each generation adds new layers to our storytelling.
Kingdom of Bugs
There are about 7 billion people on Earth, but for every one human, there are 200 million insects. (We are seriously outnumbered.) That makes insects the dominant life-form on our planet. But not only do these creatures outnumber us, they also have incredible super powers—from being able to jump the length of a football field to camouflaging their bodies to protect them from their enemies. As small as they are, they can do some major damage to buildings, and play a key role in helping our planet survive. (Insects...can't live with 'em, can't live without 'em.)
Circus At Home
If these past few months have had you dreaming of running away with the circus, you're not alone. Now's your chance. (Kinda.) Welcome to a world of daring performers, hilarious clowns, and spectacular performances. Did you know the circus has been around since ancient Rome? From Asia to Africa to the 146-year-old American Ringling Bros. Circus, circus arts have roots—and present-day popularity—all around the world. This week, you'll learn the basics of circus performance and put together a circus show from start to finish.
Ever heard of a meteorologist? You know, the people on the nightly news who point at a big map and talk about the weather? But meteorology is about more than predicting beach days or snowstorms—this is the science that focuses on the Earth’s atmosphere, and here on earth, the weather can get pretty wild.
Movies: They can carry us to other worlds, keep us company, and make us laugh, cry, or hide under the covers. And we love them for it. But what goes into the art of movie-making? Why are some movies Oscar material, while others are snooze-fests? The movie industry is a billion-dollar industry...but it takes much more than just great acting to make a movie a winner.
How have codes been used throughout history to protect secrets and signal for help? Did the Bermuda Triangle really swallow whole ships? Could aliens have built Stonehenge? Find out this week at Camp Kinda, where we’ll be focusing on History’s Mysteries.
Every week at Camp Kinda, we'll share a new adventure with activities for each day. If you're joining Camp Kinda after camp has started, you can jump in along the way or start at the beginning with Week 1. You can always pick and choose which weeks you want to explore, too. Skip a week. Do two in one. Mix it up! There's no wrong way to do Camp Kinda.