Friday, January 13, 2012

Snow, well, Ice Day, #1

For those of you who use your precious time to actually read this (including my mother!), you may recall that for the last two years The District had pretty much used up all of our THREE snow days for the year and we were going over our limit by this time in the season.  This was NOT fun because it meant that we had to use up holidays as well as add an additional 30 minutes to the school day to make up for the time missed.  That 30 minutes may not seem like a lot, but if you do after school activities it meant that you didn't get home until after dark, and it seemed that all you had time to do was fix supper, clean up, and go to bed to just get up and do it over again.

So this year has seemed a bit odd because it's been so mild.  We haven't had a lot of really cold, below 32 degree days, and for precipitation we've had quite a bit of rain.  Last year it seemed like day after day after day it was below freezing and snowing or trying to snow.

So yesterday we went from a high of 46 in the morning when I left for school, to about 42 degrees at lunch to 29 degrees by the time we left for the day.  They were calling for snow showers but not a lot of accumulation.

These are the days where I wish there wasn't a single window in the building.

It started to snow in between 5th and 6th periods.  I know this because every single kid was walking in the halls and coming into the room screaming, "IT'S SNOWING!" as if they'd never seen snow before in their entire lives.  IT'S SNOWING!  IT'S SNOWING!  IT'S SNOWING!

Yes.  We know.  Now try to settle down and let's get on with some learning.

Then of course they wanted to know if they'd go home early.  "Probably not because it's not sticking and we only have an hour and a half of school left," I told them, but to no avail.  Because, after all, IT'S SNOWING!


Then came the announcement that all after school activities, including the much-anticipated basketball game, were cancelled.  Chaos.  IT'S SNOWING!  IT'S SNOWING!  IT'S SNOWING!

The only thing that got them calmed down and interested in science was the fact that I was bouncing eggs around on my document reader.

The kids went home, and we were asked to have the building cleared by 5:00 which was no problem.  Then the announcement came over the loud speaker that we might want to go out to our vehicles and make sure we could open them as many of them had doors frozen shut.  All the rain that we had earlier in the day had frozen.  So, many of us spent some time in the parking lot prying open vehicles, then letting them warm up to get all the ice off the windshield.  (I was getting a brake job on my car so had hitched a ride with Mrs. Eagle.  $800 in two weeks between my vehicle and hubby's.  I need another job to pay for the vehicles.)

I picked up my car, and got home with no problem, although I did notice a lack of salt trucks on the roads.  The snow was starting to stick, but you could still see grass and it wasn't very heavy.  Mr. Bluebird got home from his meeting, and was surprised at how good the roads were.

However.  The temperature kept dropping, and dropping, and dropping.  About two hours after we'd been home, and Mr. Math had come over to help Mr. Bluebird with a computer problem, our driveway was a sheet of ice.  Mr. Math, who lives a half mile away, reported after he got home that it was one slick, nasty trip home.    School Districts around us started cancelling based on the ice, not the snow.

We cancelled around 4:30 this morning, not because of snow, but because of the ice underneath the snow.  All that rain we've been receiving, when it was in the 50's and 40's, turned to ice when the temps rocketed downward.

So, we have our first snow day, ice day, of the year, and it conveniently happened on the Friday before a Monday holiday.  Yeah!

Still, I'm a bit concerned.  My celery-food-coloring-salt-water osmosis demonstration will be a bit, well, ugly come Tuesday.  And as for the bouncy eggs?  Well, I don't want to even think about those.

P.S. Because I know ya'll want to know what a bouncy egg soak raw eggs in vinegar for a few days to remove the shell.  What you get is the inner membrane holding the egg together and it will, truly, bounce (try it, it's fun).  What we're doing with these eggs is putting them in a cup of syrup to predict what will happen to them in 24 hours.  (We're studying osmosis and diffusion and there's your clue).  I have no idea what will happen after 5 days.  We will see.


Lsquared said...

This doesn't surprise me too much. We live in the snowy north, and snow plows are good enough that we hardly ever have snow days because of snow, but freezing rain is another story.

Angel Read said...

I've always wanted to do the vinegar and egg experiment! As for snow, it snowed a whole bunch where I live, but the schools didn't get cancelled. All the kids were dismayed!

The Bus Driver said...

you dont crack the eggs? just put the hard shell and all in the vinegar?... i must try this...

Mrs. Bluebird said...

Bus Driver, you just put a raw egg in a container with vinegar, shell and all. It may take about 48 hours to dissolve, and you'll have to rinse off the egg, but you'll end up with a raw egg enclosed in a membrane, no shell.