Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Happy Groundhog Day!

This week, we celebrated Groundhog Day with a little bit of science and engineering! 

On Monday, we made some predictions about whether or not Punxsutawney Phil would see his shadow, and while the majority of us predicted he would see his shadow, we each came up with inventions to help Phil give us the results we were looking for :) 

For those of us who wanted no shadow and an early spring, we came up with inventions that would shield Phil from the sun. For those of us who wanted more winter, we came up with inventions that gave off lots of light to make a shadow for Phil. 

On Tuesday, we learned that Punxsutawney Phil did not see his shadow, and thus predicted an early spring. We then got to work making our own groundhogs to test outside to see what our weather prediction would be in Stratham!

It was a very sunny day when we went outside, so our groundhogs made some big shadows on the grass! 

We named our groundhogs and recorded the predictions they had made to hand out in the hallway:

Groundhog Day Fun Facts: 

  • Groundhog Day comes from the German holiday Candlemas. They originally looked to hedgehogs to predict the weather! 

If Candlemas brings wind and snow,
Then spring will very soon show.
But if it's clear and bright,
Then spring won't come so right.

  • Groundhogs are also called "Whistle Pigs" because they whistle when they are alarmed as well
    as when they begin courting
  • Groundhogs are one of the few animals that really hibernate. Hibernation is not just a deep sleep. It is actually a deep coma, where the body temperature drops to a few degrees above freezing, the heart barely beats, the blood scarcely flows, and breathing nearly stops.

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