Or, for a new twist, try out some Legos in space. Last year, the space shuttle Endeavour took a set of kits up to the astronauts on the International Space Station. Now you can follow along with their work on Lego and NASA’s joint site, Legospace.com. The site is geared to classrooms and filled with activities. Kids will get a kick out of the many videos of astronauts assembling models and explaining simple machines while floating around in jumpsuits.
3. Try this at home
While parents-in-the-know everywhere ready their Mentos Geyser Tubes at the first hint of long summer afternoons, many of us need some ideas for hands-on science projects to share with our kids. The venerable Steve Spangler Science site is filled with kits, ideas, and videos. For instance, don’t miss the Geyser Rocket Car or Instant Snow Powder.
For the very, very ambitious, Make Magazine also includes a section of project for kids and their parents. Some are reasonably easy, like the Marshmallow Shooter, others will require soldering electronics, like the Gigantic Bubble Generator.
Don’t fail to check out more home-grown sites too, like Kitchen Pantry Science, that show you how to do science experiments with ingredients you most likely have tucked in a cupboard. These projects are simple and easy to set up, from how to create your own Angry-Birds-style slingshot game to making invisible ink.
4. Forget flash cards