This week's experiment comes from Brynn's second grade science book. It really isn't so much an experiment as a demonstration and a puzzle. The activity came from the section in her book about teeth - you know, what they are made of and how they grow and that sort of stuff. The textbook suggested that the student bite into a piece of apple or other stiff food to get an imprint of their teeth so that the student could see how the teeth fit together and how they do their job of chewing food.
I decided it would be more fun for each of the kids to make a bite impression in a piece of cheese and then use their observation skills (observation being one of the steps in the scientific method, after all) to try and figure out which piece of cheese belonged to which mouth - kind of like a detective. I also took part, just to add another tooth pattern to the group. My adult-sized bite was an immediate give-way and everyone was able to correctly identify my piece of cheese. After that it got more complicated. They looked at the jagged edges of the cheese and at each other's teeth. They ordered each other to smile and to open wide and then finally made their guesses. They were all able to identify their own teeth marks, and Brynn's obviously missing teeth made her bite mark easy to identify, but Ian and Blair's marks were too similar and confused the observers.
It was a fun little exercise in observation as well as a good demonstration of how each person is unique. And of course it ended in the best possible way: with a snack made up of leftover cheese.
Happy science, everyone!