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The Imperial Cereal Machine

 A drawing of our machine:


  1. “Mom, I’m still hungry. Can I have more cereal please?” Once this child moves their bowl, they will start the machine.
  2. The bowl will knock over the pop can that the child was drinking with breakfast. This pop can will then roll down a ramp.
  3. At the bottom of the ramp, a selection of blocks will be lined up. Once this pop-can reaches the bottom, it will start a domino effect knocking the blocks down.
  4. The last block will land on one side of a lever. Since this block is the load, the other side of the lever will rise rolling the ball down the lever and pushing the block off the end. This block will then fall into the pulley system bucket.
  5. Once this block is in the bucket, the bucket will lower ultimately moving the container that is blocking the wind-up toy car.
  6. The wind-up car will hit the red funnel that is keeping a marble in place.
  7. This marble will roll down the ramp, fall into the red ramp and then fall again into the basket.
  8. Once the ball is in the basket, the fan will power on.
  9. The fan will blow cereal that has been placed on the inclined plane up and into the bowl that Kelsey will grab from the starting point.

The video:


Energy Transformations:

Mechanical to Gravitational Energy Transformation: When the child moved their bowl asking for more cereal, they started the machine. What this child didn’t know was that when the initial contact with the pop can was made, mechanical energy transformed into gravitational energy as the pop can rolled down the ramp.

Gravitational to Electrical to Thermal Energy Transformation: The movement of the marble was the starting point in this transformation. From the gravitational energy of the marble, this energy was transformed into electrical energy, demonstrated when the fan turned on. From there, electrical energy transformed into thermal energy when the air flow from the fan could be felt.

Elastic to Mechanical Energy Transformation: The wind-up toy car has stored elastic energy due to the application of force from the container. Even though we previously winded up the car, the force from the container stopped the car from moving.  When the container was removed the car’s stored up energy is transformed into mechanical energy as it moves from one place to another.

Types of Energy:

Electrical Energy:When the fan turned on, it used electrical energy because there was a flow of electrons though the outlet through the wire, to the fan.

Thermal Energy: Once the fan was on, the thermal energy could be felt through the flow of air. This air got cooler due to the vibration of atoms and molecules in the air.

Gravitational Energy: The pop can have gravitational energy because of its position of height on the kitchen counter.

Mechanical Energy: There are many objects in our machine that use mechanical energy. The reason for this type of energy is because of the movement of an object from one place to another.

Elastic Energy: The wind-up toy car has stored up elastic energy from when someone pulls it back. This energy is not released until the container is moved out of the path and the car can move forward.

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I Wonder Project

For my astronomy wonder project, I decided to take an approach in which I could question climate change found on other planets. If climate change on other planets exists, does this mean that humans are not the only factor causing global warming? Are there ways for us to stop climate change before the problem is too large to handle? So many questions and not enough answers. Therefore, I specified my idea further to read as the following: I wonder if observing climate change on other planets can help us predict the effects of climate change on Earth…

Expanding on this idea, I found a video by Stephen Hawking. He explains that Venus lived a very similar life to that of planet Earth however, the effects of climate change are much more prominent there.

After continuing my research, I decided to display the main ideas in the form of a Piktochart (attached below).

As shown above in my Piktochart, I not only learned that climate change can be tracked from space but I also learned that we are not the only planet experiencing this problem.

Mars, a planet we are learning more and more about everyday, has also experienced changes that leads humans to believe that climate change is taking place. The patterns found in rocks indicates that the reason there are softer layers and harder layers found in craters is due to climate change.

Secondly, I was very surprised and taken aback when I dove into the very familier history of Venus. Again, as stated in my Piktochart, Venus was once a planet very similar to Earth until it wasn’t. The Venus greenhouse effect is a tool we should be using to save planet Earth. Venus is our magic crystal ball, showing us our future if we do not do something to change our ways. Therefore, reflecting on my wonder idea “I wonder if observing climate change on other planets can help us predict the effects of climate change on Earth…” I can now say with confidence that I believe learning about climate change on other planets can help us predict Earth’s climate change patterns.

Information Fluency Reflection:

1.What questions did you need to research in order to research your topic?

When I first started my project, my question was very hard to answer. I wondered whether our planet is harming the universe since we are harming our planet through climate change. As Earth is so small compared to the galaxy and even the universe, I was not able to find very much information to answer this thought. Therefore, I continued with the information that I had already discovered, but chose to reframe my idea and ultimately narrow in my search. I continued to research different planets and their climates as well as how this information could be relevant for Earth.

2. What new or familiar digital tools did you try to use as you worked through this project?

Throughout this process, I was able to apply many skills that I have learned this year. When researching, I chose to explore the Gale Learning website found on the Riverside Library page. This site was very easy to use as many, if not all sources were already cited. When I researched elsewhere, I made sure to site my sources using BibMe. Finally, I hoped to display my learning in a creative format. This was my first time using Piktochart and I would definitely use it again. It was fairly simple to design my poster as well as customize the pictures and locations of everything.

3.What was the process you used to investigate the topic?

The process in which I investigated the topic was simply through research. I would google a question and more times than not, this question would lead to another. I took time to step back and throughly think about the best way to phrase questions as well what information was necessary to record.

4.How did you verify and cite the information you found?

As I mentioned above, I used both Gale Learning and BibMe to cite and verify my sources. I chose websites such as NASA and National Geographic when researching instead of personal blogs as I have learned that blogs do not always present the facts, more so they present opinions.

5.How did the process of completing this challenge go? What could you have done better?

I believe that this process went rather smoothly. I did come to the realization that I needed to change my wonder thought but once I was past that, I did not encounter many challenges. For next time, I  believe that I can always do more research. When given an inquiry project, you can never have enough research so that would definitely be something I can do better. I could possibly inquire about other planets (aside from Mars and Venus) with climate change issues as well as other galaxies. For this project however, I am very proud of my final product and I am thankful to now have this knowledge to share with the world.

Brain Growth Over Time In Relation To Increasing Climate Temperatures

Below I have included the graph where I located the original information (you may find the article by clicking on the graph image) that I used to create my visuals of the data. I have also taken this graph and made my own data set (also included below). You may notice that there are seven different year groupings recorded in the data set that I created, however, for my visual I chose to compile the data allowing me to create and demonstrate six different size brains over time.

Graph from Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History
Data Table


The visual that I created is brains of different sizes (six brains that get increasingly larger over time) that are all painted accordingly. The more purple, blue and green visible on the brain, the cooler the temperature of the planet during that year grouping. Contrarily, the more magenta, red, orange and yellow visible, the warmer the temperature of the planet during that year grouping. I found it very interesting to see that the warmer the temperature of the planet, the larger the brains grew. I chose to create a 3D model of this data in order to help myself and others understand the effects of climate change. Although we cannot give all the credit/blame to climate change affecting brain growth, the data does highlight an interesting connection between the two. Being able to manipulate the different sizes of brains and view their different colourings truly allows individuals to see the effects of warmer temperatures and will hopefully inspire change to lower the temperature of the planet; if not for the generations to come, then for our own health.

Birdseye View From Smallest Brain (Left) to Largest Brain (Right)
Side View From Smallest Brain (Left) to Largest Brain (Right)


Below, I have also attached a Core Competencies reflection regarding this project.

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