It seemed so far off when we began preparations six weeks ago, but April 6 is rapidly approaching. That's the date of Open House, so that's the date of ExploratoRio 2011.
Student exhibitors have been building and researching their exhibits. Elementary class hosts have booked every visitation slot on the schedule; we should have young explorers visiting from 8:30am to 12:30pm.
I spent a few hours in the classroom over the weekend to beat back the entropy of of the school year. I was also inspired to develop a new "snack." Over the years I have developed a handful of ExploratoRio Science Snacks for students to choose from, in addition to the Exploratorium Science Snacks published in Square Wheels and the original Exploratorium Science Snackbook.
My new snack is "Wristbandits," inspired by the recent renaming of Sacramento's ARCO Arena to Power Balance Pavilion. Earlier this year, I developed an in-class lesson exposing the pseudo-scientific hoax that the highly-popular wristbands (with or without holograms) represent.
With the onset of ExploratoRio, I thought it would be nice to have an exhibit exposing the methodology of the fraudulent demonstrations used to promote the bracelets. Once I was struck with an appropriate title, it was on.
All I need now is to draft some student exhibitors to present it. In any case, we set up tomorrow after school, clearing the room from 3-5pm and installing the exhibits from 5-6pm. ExploratoRio runs from 7:50am-12:30pm and
7:00pm-8:30pm 6:30pm-8:00pm Wednesday. By 10:00pm 9:00pm Wednesday, it will be as if nothing ever happened: the classroom will be a classroom again, ready for regular use on Thursday morning.