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A boy mixing glow in the dark solutions at Open Lab Night

Open Lab Week 

The virtual event will take place October 18 - October 22, 2021. Registration for the event is required. Additional information will be posted on our website shortly.

Welcome to Virtual Open Lab Week at BSU!  

Open Lab Week activities will be posted prior to the event. We recommend trying a few activities each day. Activities can be completed at any time - there are no "live” presentations. Within each activity, there are opportunities to submit your work, post a picture, or submit a comment or question. We would love to hear from you, and our BSU students would really appreciate your feedback. All posts are anonymous, but if you have not signed a media release with your approval for BSU to use pictures, please do not share images of your children or family.  

There are a limited number of supply kits available for pick up at BSU. Please note, a few of this year’s Open Lab Week activities are the same as in previous years. As such, some of the items in your supply kit will look familiar.

Please note that adults should supervise all students completing activities and that provided safety guidelines must be followed.

Open Lab Week activities are presented using Sway, which is best experienced using Microsoft Edge, Internet Explorer 11, Firefox 17 or later, Chrome 23 or later, and Safari 6 or later. Viewing a Sway on the Web works at any screen resolution. Within each activity, you are invited to submit comments, questions and images using Padlet. Padlet can be accessed using Google Chrome (v76 and above); Safari (11.0 and above); Firefox (68 and above); Edge (17 and above); Mobile Safari (iOS 6 and above); Mobile Chrome on Android Jelly Bean (4.1 and above). Service is not guaranteed on Internet Explorer. We recommend you use Microsoft's latest browser, Edge. 

If you run into any issues, please try a different browser, or send us an email at casebsu@bridgew.edu.  

We are so excited to share hands-on STEM learning with you and your families and can’t wait to see your pictures, comments and questions! 

Activities followed by an asterisk indicate materials found in the supply kit.

If you did not receive a kit, you can still participate in many activities as they can be completed using items common household items. For those activities requiring a kit, those items can by purchased using our supply list.

Backyard Bird Buffet (Most appropriate for Pre-k to grade 5 students but can be done by all ages).
Each and every one of us can make a difference in making our world a better place by reducing, reusing and recycling. In this activity, you will reuse a common household item that is often thrown away to create a fun, backyard bird feeder.

Branching Out  (Most appropriate for Pre-k to grade 2 students but can be done by all ages).
For this fun, interactive art activity, we will be collecting natural materials from an outdoor environment of your choice and creating a collage. Items from nature such as twigs, tree bark, acorns and different types of leaves are perfect for this activity

Bubble Geometry!  (Appropriate for all ages).* 
Everyone loves bubbles! You probably know that when you blow bubbles with a circular wand, the bubble comes out as a sphere (like a hollow ball). But what about when you blow a bubble from a square wand? Can you make any shapes other than spheres? In this activity, you’ll learn about why bubbles are formed the way they are, and you’ll build shapes to form cool new types of bubbles!

Bubble Patterns! (Appropriate for all ages).* 
Need a fun activity for recognizing shapes and patterns? Use bubbles! When bubbles float in the air, they are spherical in shape. However, when two or more bubbles meet, they attach to one another and share walls. In this activity, you’ll create and trap some bubbles in a space so that they touch, then learn about the different shapes and patterns they make!

Exploring Owl Pellets (Appropriate for all ages).*
Do you want to see what an owl ate for dinner last night? In this investigation, we will dissect an owl pellet to learn about an owl's diet and where they fit within the food chain.

Explore with Seek (Appropriate for all ages). 
Take a look around your yard. Are there plants and animals that you are curious about? Using the Seek app you can not only identify the organisms but also learn more about them. This fun and interactive app makes your walk around the block a lot more fun as you photograph and identify what you see.

Halloween Bristle Bots (Appropriate for all ages).*
Halloween is only a few weeks away. Let’s put our engineering skills to use and design and make some creeping, slithering, hovering monsters and ghosts to play with.

Magic Within Leaves (Most appropriate for grades 2-12 but with assistance can be done by all ages).
Green, yellow, orange, and red are the colors we peep in the fall. Have you ever wondered why leaves change colors with the season? Today, you will discover the magic within the leaves.

Mermaids and Manatees (Appropriate for all ages).
Do you believe in mermaids? Have you ever wondered where the idea of mermaids has come from? Today, we will explore where mermaids come from and what sea creatures prove that mermaids really exist. Let's find out who mermaids are related to and where they are today!

Modern Day Wizard (Most appropriate for grades 6-12 but with assistance can be done by all ages).
A computer scientist is like a wizard. A wizard gives life to non-living objects and makes them move with magic. Likewise, a computer scientist gives life to computers and makes them follow orders with programming. This module will show how a computer scientist controls computers and make amazing things happen.

My Kingdom for a Shelter (Appropriate for all ages).
You live in a house, I live in an apartment, but where do the animals live? Today, you will compare the survival needs of wildlife and people, while discovering some fascinating animal shelters. You will use natural materials to design and create a model of an animal shelter.

Nature’s Filter (Most appropriate for grades 2-12 but with assistance can be done by all ages).
Did you know that your drinking water comes from the ground? Explore different soil types and investigate how those soils play roll in preserving and cleaning our precious drinking water. After all, do you want to drink “dirty” water?

Oil Slick Rescue (Most appropriate for grades 2-12 but with assistance can be done by all ages).*
In recent news, you may have seen a tragic story of a massive oil spill off the coast of California. In this activity, you will explore techniques used to save precious wildlife following an oil slick coating. Can you save the sea birds?

Quivering Webs (Appropriate for all ages).*
Have you ever wondered how spiders spin their webs and ‘hear’ the prey they’ve caught? In this activity you will spin your own web and see if you can tell when something has landed in your web while learning some interesting facts about spiders.

Signs of Fall (Most appropriate for grades 2-12 but with assistance can be done by all ages).
This tree, that tree, why are they all so different?  Why do some change colors and lose their leaves and other don’t?  Did you know that even a green leaf contains hidden colors of the rainbow?  Today, you get a chance to see that up close!  You will find the “signs of fall”.

Skittle Science (Most appropriate for Pre-k to grade 4 students but can be done by all ages).
Do you love Skittles? They are colorful, sweet and delicious, what’s not to love. In this investigation we will study what happens when a skittle reacts with water and starts to dissolve, and we will even make some Skittle art.

The Art of Nature (Appropriate for all ages).
Step outside, take a look around, and join us on this journey to take a closer look at the natural landscapes that can be seen everyday right outside your home! Don't forget to grab your art supplies, because you will be becoming science illustrators as you observe, sketch, compare, and explain these areas around you!

The Case of the Mustached Bear (Appropriate for all ages).*
A crime has occurred on the BSU campus, and the campus police need your help to solve the crime! We will use forensic chromatography to see if we can find out who gave a mustache to the BSU bear mascot.
 
What a Boat? (Appropriate for all ages).
Up a creek without a boat? Through this engaging project, you will learn to appreciate wetlands' values to indigenous cultures as they build miniature boats with wetland plant materials.

A Bird’s Song: What Can it Tell Us? (Appropriate for all ages).
In this online lab, you will investigate how different bird sounds travel and what helps them travel further. Learn how to “read” sounds using a spectrogram to visualize bird sounds, predict which bird sound will travel the farthest, and learn why this is important for their behavior. Using your phone, tablet or computer, test real bird sounds under different conditions to see which work best for communicating in different habitats. Come learn about North American birds and the unique sounds they make!

A Look Into the Eye  (Most appropriate for Pre-k to grade 5 students but can be done by all ages).
The eye is a mysterious thing. Let’s explore how the eye works and really see if we can trust what our eyes see with some optical illusions.

Batman and Bats: The Power of Flight (Most appropriate for middle and high school students but can be done by all ages).
Have you ever wondered how bats evolved to be the only free-flying mammals? Why can't humans fly too? In this activity, you will learn about the key adaptations bats have for flight, and compare their wing anatomy to human arms and other flying devices.

Buckle Up and Ride: Soaring into Engineering (Appropriate for all ages).
Have you ever wondered what makes a roller coaster move so fast? Now you can find out by building your very own roller coaster! We will be exploring the connection between constructing your roller coaster (engineering) and creating a theme and putting color into your roller coaster (art). Speed, velocity, kinetic and potential energy will also be introduced. So the question is, are you ready for the challenge?

Build a “BATS”achusetts Food Web (Most appropriate for middle school students but can be done by all ages). In this activity, you’ll learn a bit about how organisms get energy in an ecosystem, and what roles they play. After some background basics, you’ll put together a food web with some common BATS of Massachusetts as the focus consumers

Build Your Own Virtual Museum! (Appropriate for all ages).
In this activity, you will be asked to do the jobs of a creative director and software engineer as you build your own virtual museum exhibit. You will learn programming skills and show us your creativity!

Can you Stop a Landslide? (Most appropriate for Pre-k to grade 5 students but can be done by all ages).
Did you know water is a powerful, destructive force that can cause erosion and landslides. Let’s learn more about landslides and see if we can prevent them from happening.

Did You Know that Fish Have Teeth in Their Throat?  (Appropriate for all ages).
Well, some fish do! Join this activity to learn more about why your teeth have different shapes, see how certain fish use their teeth in their throat, and help us identify fossilized fish teeth.

Dig Deeper - A Geologic Activity (Appropriate for all ages).
Create a model of what the ground looks like below our feet without cutting into the Earth!

Don’t Get ‘Tide’ Down, Play with Waves!  (Most appropriate K to grade 5 students but can be done by all ages).
Have you ever gone to the beach and wondered how waves are formed and how they affect the objects in the ocean? Complete this activity to experience how waves move and how different factors influence the formation of waves.

Earthshaking Earthquakes! (Most appropriate for middle school students but can be done by all ages).
Learn all about earthquakes, seismic waves, why earthquakes happen, and where they happen! They will then make their own seismograph and see energy waves pass through it when they hit a table/surface!

Exploring Sundials (Appropriate for all ages).
This is an engaging activity where children of all ages will use everyday household materials to build and improve their own sundial. There will be decisions to make about where to place the sundial; how to design it so that it is sturdy and easy to interpret; how to make sure that we can use it during most of the year. In the end, children will share the challenges they came across and the decisions they made along the way.

Forensic Casting (Most appropriate for middle and high school students but can be done by all ages).
Criminals often think to avoid leaving behind their fingerprints at the crime scene, but what about their footprints? Let’s learn more about footwear impressions and how forensic scientists gather and record this type of evidence

Invisible Extinguisher (Most appropriate for middle and high school students but can be done by all ages).
Do you believe in magic? In this experiment you will learn how to extinguish a candle with an invisible substance. Is it magic or science?

Is this Water Healthy? (Most appropriate for middle and high school students but can be done by all ages).
Aquatic organisms require water with specific pH, dissolved oxygen, and nutrients in order to stay healthy. Using simple chemical analysis, you can examine a local water body and try to determine if the water is healthy enough to support life. Find a local water body and investigate. 

Let’s Capture a Shadow (Most appropriate for Pre-k to grade 5 students but can be done by all ages).
Ever wondered how shadows are made? In this activity we will explore shadows, how they change and see if we can capture a shadow to keep forever as a piece of artwork.

Let’s Make a Watershed! (Most appropriate for K to grade 4 students but can be done by all ages).
Do you know where all the rain goes after it rains in your neighborhood or community? In this investigation we will build are own watershed to learn how water moves, travels and carries things within a watershed.

Locked Out: Engineering Challenge (Most appropriate for Pre-k to grade 5 students but can be done by all ages).
We have all played with magnets before and seen the amazing power of the magnetic force. Let’s see if we can use our knowledge of magnets to create a working lock.

Nature’s Recyclers (Appropriate for all ages).
The food chain doesn’t end after a plant or animal dies, it’s a continuous cycle. Let’s take a walk in the woods and learn about the important process of decomposition and where it all takes place.

Phyllostomidae Feeding Frenzy (Most appropriate for high school students but can be done by all ages).
Come and explore the wonderful world of Lead-Nosed Bats. In this activity you will learn about the evolutionary history of the most diverse mammalian family on Earth! The feeding ecology in this bat family covers fruit eaters, carnivorous bats, and blood suckers. Participants will learn how each bat’s morphology has evolved, allowing them to have such specialized diets.

Phylogenetics of Bats (Most appropriate for high school students but can be done by all ages).
In this investigation we will discover how the various families and species of bats are related to each other based on their physical traits, behaviors and evolutionary histories. To accomplish this, we will explore and utilize the concept of phylogenetics and learn the method of building a phylogenetic tree.

Pollen Detectives (Appropriate for all ages).
Many people think of pollen as that dusty yellow powder that makes people with allergies miserable. However, did you know that pollen from different plants has a unique shape? This activity will allow you to explore microscopic images of pollen, search the great outdoors for pollinating plants and learn that pollen can help figure out how the landscape once appeared on an archaeological site or can help in forensic investigations.

Rock Yoga: Modelling Rock Deformation with Play-do (Most appropriate for Pre-k to grade 8 students but can be done by all ages).
Can rocks do yoga? The answer is sort of! Over very long periods of time rocks can bend, fold, and stretch when they are subjected to different stresses. Play-doh will be used to model the ways rocks can bend and fold. We will explore how we see these folds on Earth’s surface through geologic maps and models. Rocks may not seem like they are soft (pliable) like Play-doh but under the right conditions they are!  

Sifting Through Layers - Exploring Sediment (Most appropriate for middle school students but can be done by all ages)
Students will learn how to create their own sediment core similar to those used by geologists, archaeologists and environmentalists. They will use household supplies, and a little bit of scavenging for the right types of soil and rocks, to make a unique sediment core. Students will be introduced to the U.S. Geologic Society website where they can get a detailed map and report of the soil around their home or neighborhood. This activity allows you to study the Earth around you!

Splatter Science – A Physics Activity (Most appropriate for K to grade 5 students but can be done by all ages).
When was the last time you were allowed to make a mess at home? The challenge of this project is "How can you spread paint without even touching it?" In this lesson you can learn how to make a beautiful piece of art, while also learning the forces behind how the art is made!

The Amazing Properties of Water (Appropriate for all ages).
Have you ever wondered how bugs can walk on water? What makes water form a droplet?  Water behaves in many unique and interesting ways. Try out these fun activities to investigate the amazing properties of water. 

The Art of Nature (Appropriate for all ages).
Step outside, take a look around, and join us on this journey to take a closer look at the natural landscapes that can be seen everyday right outside your home! Don't forget to grab your art supplies, because you will be becoming science illustrators as you observe, sketch, compare, and explain these areas around you!

The Density of Water (Most appropriate for middle school students but can be done by all ages).
Water is an amazing chemical substance naturally found in all 3 physical states; solid, liquid, and gas. In this investigation we will learn about how the density of the water changes with the states of matter.

The Shapes of Us (Appropriate for all ages).
There are so many kinds of shapes to explore! Taking inspiration from Pablo Picasso's famous painting, Three Musicians, students will solve riddles to create their own abstract people entirely out of geometric shapes!

To the Moon and Back: The Relationship between the Earth and Moon (Most appropriate for grades 2 to 12 students but can be done by all ages).
Do you like space? Here is an activity that will let you create your own model of the Earth and Moon that you can decorate, and create moving parts that will show how the Moon orbits around the Earth and how the Earth rotates on its axis.

Where Does the Sun Set? (Most appropriate for middle and high school students but can be done by all ages). Where does it set? In the west, you say. But, does the Sun set in the same place every night? Does the location of the sunset change with changing seasons? Start this activity during Open Lab Week to discover the answers to these questions!