NH-DI Weekly Roundup (May 18, 2020)

History of Flight, Five New Missions

Hello everyone!

Every week, NH-DI is going to publish a newsletter for families, which we hope will be full of educational resources and inspiration during this challenging time.

We will feature a hands-on educational activity, which will be developed by our volunteers. We hope these will vary quite a bit from week to week, but they might take the form of an instant challenge, a mini-lesson, an experiment, an art project, or a game.

Additionally, we will collect and share other online resources that have inspired us! Each week, we’ll curate a list of cool activities, performances, and more.

To view previous issues, head here.


This week, we’re all about flight! Check out these slides to learn about how things fly, the history of flight, and how you can make your own flying things!

Thanks to NH-DI volunteer Sandra Hardy for designing this activity! 

Your mission this week, should you choose to accept it…

Mission 1: Your mission is to create a costume with two appropriate accessories in one of the following themes: (1) a trip to Planet X, (2) life at the palace, (3) found in the jungle, (4) under the sea, or (5) an inanimate object comes to life. Use only these materials: 4 large paper bags, a roll of masking tape, a set of markers and a scissors. If someone can look at your costume and guess your theme, you have accomplished your mission! 

Mission 2: Your mission is to see how quickly you can melt ice and free an encapsulated item! Fill a small container with a lid 3/4 full with water. Add one object to the container such as a small plastic animal, a checker, a button, a Lego, etc.  Place the cover on your container and leave it overnight in the freezer.  No heating devices, hammers, hot water, etc. may be used! If you have a sibling or friend available, challenge them to a Melt Down! (Note: make sure your containers are the same size.)

Mission 3: Your mission (with the help of this unique calendar) is to select two or more upcoming special days and plan a family celebration to spark fun and excitement at your house! Like this idea? Why not invent your own special day—as you can see, you can celebrate just about anything!

Mission 4: Your mission is to become a detective and solve a complex murder mystery. You have 5 items that are the clues/evidence for solving your case:

  • One of the items gives you information on the occupation of the murderer.
  • One of the items gives you information about the occupation of the victim.
  • One of the items gives you information regarding the location of the crime.
  • One of the items gives you information regarding the motive for the crime.

  • One of the items is the murder weapon.

Your clues: a flower, a speeding ticket, a can of soda, a blue scarf, and a magnet. Now, put those clues together and create a scenario that solves this crime! Please submit your story to emily.richardson@nh-di.org

Mission 5: Your mission is to make the world a brighter place! Materials: a flat-bottomed plastic container (not metal), vinegar and salt. 

  • Step 1: Collect all the dull and tarnished copper pennies in your house!
  • Step 2: Add 1/2 cup vinegar & 1 tablespoon salt to your container. Stir to dissolve the salt.
  • Step 3: Add enough pennies to cover the bottom, but they should not overlap.
  • Step 4: Wait 5 minutes, then remove pennies from the solution and rinse in tap water!

They should be much shinier!  Stubborn tarnish can be removed by scrubbing with an old toothbrush. And if you enjoy playing with coins, you will like the games and activities on the U.S. Mint site

Thanks to NH-DI volunteer Jill Schoonmaker for continuing to keep us inspired with these missions!

Some websites we recommend:

TEDEd: Lessons Worth Sharing
Browse hundreds of TED-Ed Animations and TED Talks designed to spark your child’s curiosity. You’ll also find thousands of other video-based lessons organized by age-level and subject. Check out videos such as “Why don’t we throw trash in volcanoes?,” “Soap vs. Sanitizer vs. Coronavirus,” “Do IQ tests work?,” “The importance of setting in a story,” and so many more! You can even browse their series page to view videos organized by themes, such as Periodic Videos, Mysteries of the Vernacular, Inventions that Shape History, and Awesome Nature. 
Wide Open School
Wide Open School is a free collection of the best online learning experiences for kids curated by the editors at Common Sense. There is so much good happening, and they are here to gather great stuff and organize it so teachers and families can easily find it and plan each day. More than 25 organizations came together (and many more are joining on a daily basis) to create Wide Open School. You can select K-5 or 6-12 and dive right in!
Space Foundation Discovery Center
Their website is full of videos, live webinars, and a virtual discovery center all about space! Are you curious about how you bake in microgravity? Watch this video to learn all about the first cookies baked on the International Space Station and make some of your own!

Some STEAM activities to try:

Explore buoyancy with foil boats

Media Arts: Movie Soundtrack
PBS challenges you to watch a scene from the 1963 Alfred Hitchcock movie, “Charade,” and change the soundtrack to different kinds of music. Observe how the music affects the meaning of the scene!
Capsized! How Sailboats Stay Upright
Have you ever seen a tall sailboat and wondered how they don’t flip over when it’s windy? Try this project and learn about the physics behind how sailboats stay upright.
Why Does Fruit Turn Brown? An experiment
Have you ever wondered why apple slices turn brown once you cut them, or why a yellow banana gets dark spots over time? In this project you will find out why this happens, and how you can keep your apple slices looking fresh!
Make Your Own Origami Cube: An Introduction to Architecture 101

An activity created by DI headquarters

Virtual Instant Challenge: Objects Are Larger Than They Appear

Create and present a performance about a situation where objects from the kitchen are much larger than in real life.

Share what you’ve created!

Were you inspired by any of the activities or resources in this Weekly Roundup? What did you build or create? We encourage you, with a parent or guardian’s help and permission, to share your creations on our Facebook or Instagram pages! (Just add your photo as a comment on our weekly post!)

And please share NH-DI’s Weekly Roundup with your friends! Ask them to sign up for weekly emails (if they’re 13 or older), or send them a link to our main Weekly Roundup page.

That’s all for this week, but we look forward to sending you more soon! And as always, if you have ideas for the Weekly Roundup, email Emily Richardson at emily.richardson@nh-di.org.

Published weekly by New Hampshire Innovation and Creativity Connection (NHICC), the nonprofit organization that operates New Hampshire’s Destination Imagination, Camp Gottalikachallenge, and Girls Engineering the Future programs. Learn more about us…