GEMS 2010 – Share your knowledge!

DSC_0087Girls Exploring Math and Science (GEMS) 2010 is looking for Girl Scouts (4th-12th graders) to host the activity booths and we are now accepting applications! GEMS 2010 is going to be held on Saturday, Feb. 20, 2010, at the Houston Museum of Natural Science. Girl Scout booths will be placed throughout the Museum exhibit halls so that visitors can learn all about the wonders of science, technology, engineering and mathematics!

HMNS has been hosting GEMS since 2006 alongside the Girl Scouts of San Jacinto Council and we have seen many really incredible booths put together by Girl Scouts! From probability games and circuit testing to optical illusions and magical mobius strips - girls can really get creative with the topics they choose to share with the crowds at the GEMS event. A really fun part of being a GEMS booth host is participating in the booth host set up event and Overnight the night before GEMS, then everyone wakes up on Saturday morning ready to roll!DSC_0167

So – how can my Girl Scout troop apply to be a booth host- you ask?

It’s easy…

1)BRAINSTORM: Come up with several ideas of math and science topics that seem intriguing to your group.

2) KNOW THE GUIDELINES: Download the information packet for Girl Scouts interested in hosting a GEMS booth from the HMNS website and review all of the parameters for hosting a booth. Think about the space limitations, participant requirements, etc.

3) SELECT A TOPIC: Pick which topic from your brainstorming session that will best suit the GEMS guidelines and complete the booth description part of the application — be creative!

4) APPLY! Applications are due by 5pm on Nov. 20, 2009 – that’s only a few weeks away so don’t delay!

Be sure to contact us if your group is interested in hosting a Girl Scout booth! Stay tuned for more information on how to join us on the day of GEMS as a visitor and visit all of the fun booths!

Girls Exploring Math and Science at HMNS this Saturday!!

It’s National Engineers Week and what that means for us is that it’s almost time for GEMS 2009 here at the Houston Museum of Natural Science.

The Girls Exploring Math and Science event has been hosted at the Houston Museum of Natural Science since 2006 and we’re all geared up for this year to be so much fun. We have Girl Scouts hosting booths on hands-on topics ranging from catapults and gravity to probability and electricity!

Our Community partnership with the Girl Scouts of San Jacinto Council has drawn in more and more girl scouts from across the council each year to come up with exciting topics to study and share with the GEMS visitors on Saturday during the event. We have also invited other groups from the community to host booths in the Grand Hall of the Museum and share their love of Math and Science through hands on activities and information about their organizations.

The 2009 Community booths will include the Society of Women Engineers, MD Anderson Cancer Center, Baylor College of Medicine and the John C. Freeman Weather Museum among other great organizations with lots to share to our visitors!

So bring your family and join us for a fun event learning about Science, Engineering, Math and Technology here at the Girls Exploring Math and Science event on Saturday, February 21, 2009 from 9am - 12pm.

Come early so that you can beat the Saturday crowd, see all of the great booths and really enjoy the event!

(I would also definitely suggest buying your tickets online at www.hmns.org so you can just jump right in on Saturday and avoid the box office line!)

Science Doesn’t Sleep (4.10.08)

So here’s what went down since you logged off.

You could set the whole thing down between Houston and Sugar Land with room to spare (not that the residents would thank you for it) – but that doesn’t make this new photo of Phobos, one of Mars’ moons, any less impressive.

But what if scrubbing the toilet is what’s making me depressed? A new study shows you can boost your mental health by doing housework.

Creative Commons License photo credit: .Martin.

Off the Kuff points us to a new proposal to get all that wind energy from West Texas circulating through the rest of the state. It’ll cost you, though – $3 to 7 billion. Worth it? Check out the proposal and let us know what you think.

The Olympic flame is virtually unquenchable (and no, I am not speaking metaphorically.) What used to be a stick on fire is now a torch that can withstand winds of up to 40 miles an hour, nearly 2 inches of rain an hour, temperatures of minus 40 degrees, and many other threats to its general flamey-ness.

Apparently, the Olympic torch has been the subject of intense scientific development for years, due to the fact that the “fire lighted at ancient Olympia” must be the very same flame that lights the torch and the games themselves – however many snowy mountain ranges or pouring rain forests you have to traverse to get there. Which begs the question – what if it’s not? Surely someone has dropped the thing in a puddle since we started the Games up again.

So, this isn’t news per se, but I’d just like to put this out there: I like bridges that don’t collapse. I prefer buildings that stay in one piece. And I am also rather fond petrochemical plants that don’t blow up. So I found Mental Floss’ list of “Embarrassing Moments in Engineering“ to be fascinating – but also completely terrifying, and also somewhat more than embarrassing for the engineers involved.  (Um, just a quick note to all you future engineers out there – please study hard. If your bridge sways so much that it actually throws people off – that’s bad. Very, very bad.)

And finally – yesterday, our very own David was a guest on FM Houston, a fabulous local radio program, answering ever-curious host Laurent’s probing questions about da Vinci – our exhibit, his inventions, the Renaissance and more. Everyone else will have to wait until this weekend to experience the hilarity, when it airs on all 63 local Clear Channel stations – but you, dear blog reader, can listen to their witty repartee right now: check out the FM Houston blog and download the podcast.