The Exploding Lunch Bag

This week’s blog post will be another short experiment that anyone can do at home! This week the experiment will be called the exploding lunch bag. Here’s what you’ll need:

• Zip sandwich bag – zip-lock freezer bags work the best
• Baking soda
• Warm water
• Vinegar
• Measuring cup
• Tissue

Steps:
1. Go outside or to the kitchen sink.
2. Put ¼ cup warm water into the sandwich bag.
3. Add ½ cup of vinegar to the water in the sandwich bag.
4. Put 3 teaspoons of baking soda in the tissue then fold it up.
5. Work fast now- zip the sandwich bag close but leave a corner open, enough to fit the tissue full of baking soda in.
6. Slip the tissue in and step back
7. Watch the bag slowly expand then explode!

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This cool experiment is fueled by the simple chemical reaction between the vinegar and the baking soda. It releases CO2, and once the bag no longer holds that capacity for the CO2, the bag then explodes. Time to scare your friends in the lunch rooms!

Works Cited:
Pflugfelder, Bob. “The Exploding Lunch Bag.” Science Bob. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Oct. 2013.

The Periodic Table

This week I decided to put up a post about the elements of chemistry. We’ve all seen it. The massive chart with a bunch of random number and letter squeezed together in tight blocks. It’s the periodic table, which is made up of 103 elements.

periodic_table_of_elements

Many of these blocks include elements that a majority of us are familiar with, such elements as gold, silver, copper, oxygen and many more. The basic way to read these blocks individually can be pretty overwhelming. There is so much to an element that can be fit in one tiny block, so it’s hard to mix up numbers. For example, Nitrogen:

N-periodic-table-de

To begin, Nitrogen can be identified as the seventh element on the table. And the way an elements number is established on the chart is based on the atomic number. In this case, nitrogen has 7 protons and 7 electrons whereas its neighbor, oxygen, has 8 protons and 8 electrons, making oxygen follow after nitrogen. You can find the number it is by looking at the top left hand corner of the block. Then centered, written is the abbreviation for the element in bold letters. And then finally at the bottom of the block is the atomic mass, just telling us how much this element weighs.

Even though some elements are included on the chart, some don’t exist in or on our planet earth. This table based on the elements known to mankind, however, there are a few at the bottom that a father of chemistry, Dimitri Medeleev, predicted would exist. These elements were referred to as ekaboron(Eb), ekaaluminium (Ea), ekamanganese (Em) and ekasilicon (Es). He left holes in the chart where he guessed these unknown elements would lie. Those elements are actually the separate chart beneath the table. The top line in this chart are know as the Lanthanides and the bottom row is referred to as Actinides. These are known as the transition metals and have very low orbitals which is why they are positioned cast away from the other elements. Mendeleev knew these had to exist based on atomic make, however were not discovered until later.

Another way that this chart is also organized is by the different states that these elements can be found in. From the left side of the table to the right, it starts with halogens and slowly turns into the alkali metals. Finally, the last column on the right is referred to as the noble gases. These gases are known to be Helium (He), Neon (Ne), Argon (Ar), Krypton (Kr), Xenon (Xn) and radon (Rn). These different states that elements can be found in are sectioned off by columns throughout the chart. Separated vertically as well and numerically are the different orbitals thats the protons and electrons have around the nucleus. It’s rather hard to explain the nature of the numbering in conjunction with the states of the elements so here’s a picture to better understand:

maybe

Thats the basic breakdown to help people understand the periodic table better. It’s really not as confusing as some make it out to be.

The Water Cycle

This post this week will be a little insight on the water cycle of our earth. This topic is very plain and simple and extremely easy to follow!

The water cycle is a never ending flow, so a good place to being is when it rains. When it is raining, the water is falling to the earth, or precipitating, and the water is then absorbed into the earth’s crust.

1667778_orig

The second step is the water slowly moving through the earth’s crust, following the topography (the terrain) of the crust, and flows out eventually to the ocean.

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The final step in the cycle is when the water evaporates in the atmosphere and is slowly formed in to clouds. This is referred to as condensation. Once the water droplets are combined too much where they’re too heavy to be held by the updraft of the cloud, it then begins to rain.

precipitation_fog

This is a very basic idea that actually has many branches when it comes to where water travels to throughout the earth. This picture is to represent all other happenings of the water cycle.

water-cycle

Depression…

This post is going to be more personal this week. The topic I want to discuss is depression. Not many are aware but this mental state plagues millions of people across the world, and many are unaware of it. People who experience, or for a better word, suffer, from depression understand the meaning of no hope. A lot of symptoms of depression can include the following:
• Abnormal sleep patterns (too much or not enough sleep)
• Disinterest in most daily activities
• Memory loss
• Many more

Symptoms can vary depending on the severity and type of depression. This is all caused by an abnormal imbalance in your brain causing low levels of dopamine or serotonin.

Depression hurts. And I’m not trying to sound like a Cymbalta commercial for antidepressants. It’s an illness that can physically harm you. Reasons as to why depression begins vary as well. It is an illness that is hard to crack, and is very dependent on all of the circumstances that one faces to cause depression.

Growing up, I faced a lot of situations a young girl shouldn’t have had to face, and extreme poverty wasn’t the least on the list. Once I finally graduated into high school, it all began to hit me. I was tired every day and my out of school activities no longer pleased me so I dropped out of dancing, singing, acting and softball. My grades slipped and I dropped from my high honors classes to academic even though I was still failing those, too. By my junior year, I spun out and almost became a high school dropout. My numbers of worries increased as well as the number of scars on my arm, and then I was committed to Western Psychiatric in Oakland after my first attempt to commit suicide. There I was treated for clinical depression stemming from a traumatic childhood.

I used this to excuse myself and I abused my medication as a way to cope. After a small down fall again senior year, I realized this is no way to live. People who suffer from this try to find a comfort in their medications and the stupid therapy that the certain quacks say are “designed to help the coping method”. They’re completely wrong. There is no cure for depression. Only to ease the pain that’s created in your mind. Medications help greatly for people that have such a chemical deficiency that they can’t function without it. However, the remedy that many depressives, such like me is the answer that lies within. It sounds deep and metaphorical but it’s actually all within you. And find the answer in you when you’re trying to solve your troubles. The question that many depressives stutter and stammer over is “What do you want?” They fail to come to understand what they really want in their lives. And you, yourself, are the main controller of your own life. I always enjoyed pleasing people, but I never attended to my own needs, and I was at a loss when this question stumped me. But with true time to think about life and what I want, it came to me. And it definitely can come to any depressive who really sits down and thinks about what they would like in their lives or what they want to do. The answer is not in medication or faulty therapy. It’s you.