‘It’s a Girl’s World’
By Janna Odenthal Post-Tribune correspondent August 20, 2012 2:46PM
Volunteer Kim Crowell pours whipping cream into a bag for Antonia Fresh, 10, both of Chesterton, Ind., to shake to make homemade ice cream. | Photo provided
Future “It’s a Girl’s World” subjects include climate change, fossils, DNA, bubbles, crystals and more at the Hageman branch of the Westchester Public Library, visit www.wpl.lib.in/us or call 926-9080. The library is at 100 Francis St., Porter.
Updated: September 22, 2012 6:12AM
The common yet somewhat mysterious phenomenon of brain freeze became a topic of discussion among a group of fourth- through sixth-grade girls recently. Thoughts were prompted and theories were tested during “It’s a Girl’s World” science program at the Hageman branch of the Westchester Public Library in Porter.
Linda Bayman, library clerk, coordinated the program.
Each girl was given a large plastic bag, into which she poured milk, whipping cream, sugar and vanilla as she walked from station to station. After zipping their plastic bags closed, the girls placed them inside another plastic bag, which contained ice and rock salt.
The group shook their bags for several minutes until the ingredients solidified into a creamy cold mixture, which they poured into cups and ate with a spoon.
Bayman discussed the creation and use of ice cream in different cultures throughout history as they savored their creations.
During a previous week, the girls learned how to create lip balm. They combined melted beeswax, olive oil and honey. While some added peppermint extract to flavor their lip balm, others chose from a variety of Kool-Aid packets, then poured the mixture into small tubes.
The group picked flowers during a different week. After placing the flowers in plastic bags and hammering the petals, they added vinegar or baking soda and water to watch the flowers change color according to it’s chemical makeup.
Eve Senderhauf, 10, of Chesterton participated in these and other activities. She said it was her first time performing the experiments and making ice cream.
“I did the lip balm and the flowers. They were cool,” said Senderhauf. “This (homemade ice cream) is way better than normal ice cream; it was good. I want to make it at home with the recipe.”
One week, they mixed vegetable oil, water, food coloring and Alka Seltzer in an empty liter bottle. The resulting effect mimicked a lava lamp.
Kassidy Crowell, 10, of Chesterton said she enjoys participating in the library’s programs.
“I thought (making ice cream) would be a really cool thing to do. I think it is really fun to make a lava lamp,” said Crowell. “I like science, but it’s not my favorite subject. I didn’t know science could be this fun.”
Her mother, Kim, volunteered to help with the science and other programs throughout the summer.
“(Kassidy) has done almost every library program this summer; she’s done Spanish, sign language, knitting, nature crafts, art. We took advantage of almost everything,” Kim said. “It’s been wonderful. She’s enjoyed it. Hopefully she’ll maintain the friendships that she’s making.”