Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Project FAILS

I know I can't be the only one who has been excited about a project or activity only to have it not work. In fact, sometimes my postings are slow because we try something and it's not a success and you can't hardly suggest to someone else to do it then, right? Since I know some are just merely operator error, and to show that I am human, here are some of our failures.
I'd read or seen ideas about using wet paper for chalk drawings. First we tried just drawing on paper with chalk and then getting it wet to see what it did. For us, nothing. Then we tried getting the paper wet first. Still nothing, except ripped paper. Then we moved on to water color on wet paper, which was better, but still just lame. So, we put this in the "uh, that didn't really work" category.
Next up some gross popsicles. This was not the first time ever making homemade popsicles and most all the varieties I came up with in the past worked. So, of course, when I decide to take pictures of it for the blog, I attempt a recipe that did not go over all that well. So,  these items blended together may make a good breakfast drink, but they don't transfer over well for popsicles. It's better to just stick with the known good ones (which usually involve pudding mixed with fruit.)
I read about this in a book and am pretty sure it was mostly just operator error. The soap bats were easy enough to make - cardboard, soap and tape.
But, tehy didn't move through the water like they should have. As we tried it out in some irrigation water in my parents' backyard, we decided that maybe just a bathtub with stagnant water would have been a better place to attempt this.
Some of you looking at this might spot our error right away. The old standard Diet Coke and Mentos eruption is one I have done before with success. I had no kids then and so I wanted to do it again. While we were camping we got all the cousins together to watch the show. And it totally didn't work. Our mistakes? Well, I have read since then that you can't really substitute the Diet Coke if you want the best results. Also, don't buy a 2-liter and let it sit there for a long time. I bought the stuff for this and we didn't do it right away. Then when we had an audience beyond just my kids I couldn't find the Mentos. And then the bottle just sat there. So, use fresh Diet Coke and make sure you have Mentos and this should actually be a fun success.
This failed experiment still makes me the most bummed because I tried in once last summer (here) and again this summer (below). It is still hot around here (99 for the forecasted high tomorrow), so I'm guessing someone out there is still having even hotter weather.
The suggestion for baking cookies in the car is to have a super hot day. I think I never timed it just right because the weatherman never really knows just how how it will be. So, the 103 degree day this was supposed to be wasn't. I still can't figure out for sure what I did wrong the second time.
So, this is one I would love for someone else to test, because I'm just too down-hearted about it. I used the information at Bakingbites.com to guide me through both times. The second time I even rolled up my dough and froze it. Still, after 4+ hours all we had was a half-baked weird crumbly mess. If you try this out, please let us know if it works. Maybe I'll make another go at it next summer.
Have a great week with your successes and failures!


Anonymous said...

Thank you for this post. There were several brilliant project that I saw on the Net, but when I tried them we were dissapointed as they didn't work out. It's great to see that I am not the only one with problems.

Rachel said...

I could have told you about the Diet Coke problem. Ryan does this in his classroom every year I think he might have made or read of the mistake of the substitute pop. Weird that it matters that much. -Way to show that we all have bad experiments sometimes.