Daily Discovery: Help Make History! / Descubrimiento en casa: ¡Ayuda a hacer historia!

Post written by Heidi Fuhrman, Discovery Camps Coordinator.

Daily Discovery: Help Make History!

Museums are places to learn, play, and discover…and they also have another important job: to collect, save, and share history! FCMoD focuses on the history of Fort Collins and Northern Colorado, and we need your help by telling us your story of living through COVID-19. Learn more below!

Hi, my name is Lesley Struc and I am the Archivist here at FCMoD. An archivist brings the past to the present by collecting and saving things like photos, letters, diaries, books, maps, and newspapers. I love keeping these things organized and available so that everyone can visit the Archive or our website to discover the history of Fort Collins!

One of my favorite stories about local history is our connection to Disneyland in California. A man named Harper Goff grew up in Fort Collins and later worked for the Disney company. In the 1950s he helped design the look of Main Street in Disneyland and used his happy memories of Fort Collins as inspiration! Here is a view of Walnut Street in Fort Collins from 1891…I think I can see a little Disneyland in there!

“Hi there! My name is Linda and I am the Curator of Collections here at FCMoD. I take care of the artifacts –which can be any of the objects we use to live our lives, while collecting as much information as possible about them. I make sure the rooms where we keep artifacts have the right temperature and light and are safe from pests that could harm them. My favorite moments with artifacts happen when people recognize something familiar in them: like when seeing a toy reminds them of how it felt to be younger, or a fingerprint on an ancient piece of pottery reminds them what it feels like to squish clay in their hands. (Visitors enjoy showing off their aprons from home while visiting an exhibit about historic aprons.)

 

What Can You Do? . . . Share Your Story!

We want you to tell us your story! Visit here to submit written, video, and photo files about your experience living during COVID-19. Use the ideas and questions below to help you get started.

We want people of all ages to complete it! That means you kids, teens, grown-ups, and families together. Remember your story is so important! You don’t have to be “famous” to be a very important part of history!

Not ready to share your story yet? That’s ok! Use the ideas below to record it anyway. When you’re ready, we’d love it if you share your story with us through our website. We want to help you save your story for your friends and family who will wonder about it later.

Get Started!

Not sure how to tell your story? Here are some ideas:
• Write a letter to your future self. What do you want to remember?
• Take a video of yourself telling the story of your quarantine.
Interview your friends and family (see our “Story Detectives” Discovery At Home to get started!)
• Become a photojournalist for a day/week. Write captions for all your photos and be sure to note
where you took it and the names of anyone in the photo!
• Create a graphic novel or art about living in COVID-19.
• Make a scrapbook! Include mask selfies, pictures of school at home, sidewalk chalk, baked goods, other parts of your experience! Be sure to include when, where, and who info about the photos.
You can share all of these with us through our website portal!

Think about these questions:

  •  If you were a kid learning about COVID-19 in 50 or 100 or 200 years what would you want them to
    know about your life? What would you want to tell them?
  • What do you want to remember about this time?
  • How are you feeling? What scares you? What makes you happy? What makes you sad?
  • What are you doing? What new things have you created or done to stay entertained?
  • What has been the hardest thing for you about stay-at-home and COVID-19?
  • What has changed in your life that is different from before?
  • How do you feel about wearing a mask?
  • How do you feel about doing school or work at home?
  • How do you feel about not seeing friends or family?
  • What has been the best thing about stay-at-home? What is the most fun thing you’ve done?
  • What is making you smile even when life is hard?

Want to download these directions? Click here for a handy PDF!

Follow along with our Daily Discovery! Click here for all activities that you can do at home.

 

Traducido por Károl de Rueda y Laura Vilaret-Tuma.

Descubrimiento en casa: ¡Ayuda a hacer historia!

Los museos son instituciones para aprender, jugar, descubrir… Pero también tienen otra responsabilidad importante: el colectar, preservar ¡y compartir la historia! El Museo del Descubrimiento de Fort Collins (FCMoD) también se enfoca en documentar la historia de Fort Collins y del norte de Colorado, y en estos momentos necesitamos de tu ayuda. Cuéntanos sobre lo que has vivido, lo que has visto, y lo que has experimentado durante la crisis del coronavirus (COVID-19). Encuentra información sobre este proyecto más abajo.

“¡Hola! Mi nombre es Lesley Struc, la Archivista de FCMoD. La función de un archivista es traer el pasado al presente. Yo me encargo de colectar y preservar artículos como fotografías, cartas, diarios y periódicos. Me encanta mantener organizado este material y hacerlo disponible para todas las personas que quieran descubrir la historia de Fort Collins, ya sea visitando el área de Archivo en el museo, o en nuestro sitio web. Una de mis historias favoritas es la conexión local que tenemos con Disneylandia en California. Un hombre llamado Harper Goff, creció en Fort Collins y luego trabajó para la compañía Disney en los años 50s. Ayudando a diseñar Main Street en Disneylandia, tomó inspiración de sus felices recuerdos basándose en algunos edificios ¡de Fort Collins! Esta es una fotografía de Walnut Street en Fort Collins del año 1891… ¡Creo que puedo ver un poco de Disneylandia es esta imagen!”

“¡Hola! Mi nombre es Linda y soy la curadora de colecciones aquí en FCMoD. Me encargo de los artefactos -que pueden ser cualquiera de los objetos que utilizamos diariamente- mientras recopilo la mayor cantidad de información posible sobre ellos. Me aseguro de que las habitaciones donde los guardamos tengan la temperatura y la luz correctas, y que estén a salvo de plagas que puedan dañarlos. Mis momentos favoritos con los artefactos ocurren cuando las personas reconocen algo familiar entre ellos: ver un juguete que trae memorias de su infancia, o una huella digital en una pieza de cerámica antigua les recuerda lo que se siente el aplastar arcilla entre sus manos.”

¿Qué puedes hacer? ¡Comparte tu historia!

¡Queremos que nos cuentes tu historia! Visita el sitio www.fcmod.org/making-history para enviar escritos, videos, fotografías, etc. sobre tus experiencias durante la crisis de COVID-19. Nos encantaría que nos ayudaran ¡personas de todas las edades! Eso significa que las experiencias de niños, de adolescentes, de adultos y de familias enteras son bienvenidas. ¡Recuerda que tu historia es muy importante! ¡No tienes que ser “famoso” para hacer historia! ¿Aún no estás listo/a para compartir? ¡No te preocupes! Cuando lo estés, nos encantaría recibir tu material a través de nuestro sitio web. ¡Estas historias podrían quedar para la posteridad!

¡Vamos a empezar!

Estas son algunas ideas para crear tu historia:

  • Escribe una carta dirigida hacia ti mismo, pero pensando en el futuro. ¿Qué te gustaría recordar de estos momentos?
  • Graba en video la historia de tu cuarentena.
  • Entrevista a amigos y familiares y anota sus experiencias.
  • Conviértete en reportero fotográfico. Escribe títulos para todas tus fotografías y asegúrate de anotar el lugar en donde fueron tomadas, así como los nombres de cualquier persona incluida en la imagen.
  • Crea una novela gráfica o alguna pieza de arte que exprese tu nueva rutina o alguna experiencia durante estos tiempos de crisis.
  • Haz un álbum de recortes. Incluye selfies con cubrebocas, fotos de “la escuela en casa,” dibujos hechos con gises sobre la acera, comidas especiales, o cualquier otra experiencia personal. Asegúrate de incluir información sobre cuándo, dónde y quién forma parte de las imágenes.

¡Comparte este material con el museo a través de nuestro sitio web!

¿Cómo les responderías a estas preguntas?

  • Si fueras un niño aprendiendo sobre COVID-19 en 50, 100 ó 200 años, ¿qué te gustaría saber sobre tu vida actual? ¿Qué te gustaría decirles a las nuevas generaciones sobre estos momentos? • ¿Qué quieres recordar sobre esta experiencia?
  • ¿Qué quieres recordar sobre esta experiencia?
  • ¿Cómo te sientes? ¿Qué te asusta? ¿Qué te hace feliz? ¿Qué te pone triste?
  • ¿Qué estás haciendo? ¿Has creado o inventado algo nuevo para entretenerte?
  • ¿Qué ha sido lo más difícil para ti sobre la orden de quedarse en casa?
  • ¿Qué ha cambiado en tu vida que ahora es diferente?
  • ¿Cómo te sientes al usar un cubrebocas?
  • ¿Cómo te sientes al tener clases y/o trabajar desde casa?
  • ¿Cómo te sientes al no poder tener contacto cercano con amigos o familiares?
  • ¿Qué ha sido lo mejor de quedarse en casa? ¿Qué es lo más divertido que has hecho?
  • ¿Qué te hace sonreír incluso cuando la vida es difícil?

¿Te gustaría descargar esta actividad? Haz clic aquí para obtener un archivo PDF.

Para encontrar actividades, ideas y mucho más descubrimiento en casa, ¡síguenos!

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Daily Discovery: Life Cycle of a Star Mobile

Post written by Sierra Tamkun, Learning Experiences Manager.

Daily Discovery: Life Cycle of a Star Mobile

One star, two star, red star, white dwarf star! Throughout it’s billion-year life, a low-density star, just like our Sun, goes through many
changes. Learn about the different stages in a star’s life cycle, and make your own star mobile!

The Life of a Star

A star’s life cycle is determined by how big it is, or how much mass it has! The greater the mass of the star, the shorter its life. Depending on the amount of matter in the nebula where the star is born, it will either be a high-mass star, or a low-mass star, like our Sun. We’ll use this life cycle for our mobile.

But how are stars formed, anyway? As clouds of gas and dust move around in a nebula, hydrogen gas is pulled together by gravity and begins to spin faster and faster, heating up to become a protostar. When hot enough (about 15,000,000 degrees Fahrenheit!), a reaction called nuclear fusion occurs at the star’s core, pulling in
more gas and dust and causing the star to stabilize and glow bright! It will continue shining in this phase as a main sequence star for millions to billions of years. Our closest star, the Sun, is currently at this stage.

Over time, hydrogen at the star’s core is converted to helium through nuclear fusion. Once the hydrogen runs out, the star isn’t able to generate enough heat to maintain its size. The core contracts, while the outer shell expands and cools, glowing red. This is known as the red giant phase. As the core continues to cool, the helium
begins to fuse into carbon. Once all the helium is gone, the core collapses, and the outer layer is expelled into gases and dust, creating a planetary nebula! The collapsed core remains as a white dwarf, slowly cooling to become a black dwarf.

A high-mass star undergoes a supernova explosion after its red giant phase. If the explosion is small, it become a neutron star. But if the explosion is large, the core of the star is swallowed by its own gravity, becoming a black hole!

Supplies:

  • Paper Plate
  • Colorful beads, pom-poms, sequins, colored paper, cotton balls, pillow stuffing, etc.
  • Paints, markers, or crayons
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • String

Instructions:

  1. 1. Decorate your paper plate like outer space! This will be the backdrop for your star’s life cycle.
  2. Carefully use the scissors to cut your paper plate into a spiral. Ask an adult to help you if needed! Leave a small circle at the center of your spiraled plate.
  3. At the top of your spiral, attach your sting so you can hang your mobile when you’re done! You can use glue or tape, or poke a hole through the plate and tie your string to attached it.
  4. Select different objects to represent each stage in the life of your star. Pick any materials you like, or follow these suggestions:
    a. Star-forming nebula: cotton balls or pillow stuffing
    b. Protostar: small light-colored bead or sequin
    c. Main Sequence Star (like our Sun): yellow bead or pom-pom
    d. Red Giant: large red pom-pom or red paper circle
    e. Planetary Nebula: small bead and cotton balls or pillow stuffing
    f. White Dwarf: white bead or pom-pom
    g. Black Dwarf: small black bead or pom-pom
  5. Start by gluing your nebula materials at the very top of your spiral plate, around the string. Next, glue your black dwarf to the end. Evenly space out the rest of your representative objects and glue them to your spiral plate in the appropriate order.
  6. Use the string to hang up your mobile! As it spins, follow along with the different life stages of a star just like our very own Sun!

Want to download these directions? Click here for a handy PDF!

Follow along with our Daily Discovery! Click here for all activities that you can do at home.

Image credit: NASA

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Daily Discovery: “If You Love Honey” Bee Headband Craft

Post written by Lea Mikkelsen, Early Childhood Coordinator.

Daily Discovery: Storytime in the Home – If You Love Honey  Bee Headband Craft

Follow along with FCMoD’s live stream Storytime in the Home: If You Love Honey: Nature’s Connections. Then gather all your supplies to create this adorable honeybee headband. Buzz Buzz!

Supplies:

  • Yellow and Black craft paper
  • Pipe cleaners
  • Glue
  • Tape
  • Scissors
  • Yarn
  • Hole punch

Instructions:

  1. Place all your supplies on a clear surface with plenty of room to create.
  2. Cut a long strip of yellow craft paper.
  3. Cut a second strip of black craft paper and cut that into small bee stripes.
  4. Glue the black bee stripes to the yellow strip of craft paper leaving some yellow bits in between.
  5. Punch a hole in the ends of the strip and thread the yarn through to use as a tie.
  6. Curl one end of each pipe cleaner to make a small ball.
  7. Tape the pipe cleaners to the inside of the headband where you want each antenna to go.
  8. Tie your headband on and do a honeybee dance! BUZZZZZzzzz!

Want to download these directions? Click here for a handy PDF!

Follow along with our Daily Discovery! Click here for all activities that you can do at home.

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Daily Discovery: Bending Light and Eyesight

Post written by Angela Kettle, School Programs Coordinator.

Daily Discovery: Bending Light and Eyesight

Have you ever noticed that your legs look out of place when you dangle them in the pool, or that the straw in a glass of water looks bent? This is called refraction. Refraction occurs when light bends as it passes from one medium to another – for example, from the front of a glass, to the water inside, to the back of a glass. Experiment with refraction for yourself in the activity below!

Supplies:

  • Paper
  • Pencil
  • Crayons, colored pencils, or markers (optional)
  • 2+ different kinds of drinking glasses, filled with water – make sure the glasses are transparent
  • Your Observation Journal (find out how to make one here), or use another sheet of paper to record your findings

Instructions:

Part 1

  1. Draw an arrow on a sheet of paper. Note which way the arrow is facing (right, left, up, or down).
  2. Fill up a glass of water.
  3. Put your glass of water down, and put yourself at eye level with the water in the glass. Hold your drawing at arm’s length, so that you can see it through the glass. What do you notice about the way your drawing looks now? What about if you look at the image through the glass from a different angle?
  4. Repeat the experiment, this time with a different kind of glass. Does the image stay the same as the last glass, or does it change?
  5. Write or draw your findings in your Observation Journal.

Part 2

  1. Draw something new – whatever you like! Make sure that whatever you draw has certain parts facing one way or another (for example, you could draw a face with the eyes looking left, or a cat with its tail on the right side of the paper and its head on the left side).
  2. Look at your drawing through your glass of water, like you did with the arrows. What do you notice?
  3. Play around with your drawing and your glass. Try looking at the image from lots of different angles, through as many different kinds of drinking glasses as you can. How many different images can you create from your original image, just by experimenting with refraction?
  4. Record your findings in your Observation Journal. Share what you find by tagging us on social media and using #DailyDiscovery.

From Drinking Glasses to Eyeglasses

Refraction might seem like a fun magic trick, but did you know that refraction is what makes it possible for humans to see? Light is refracted as it passes through the cornea and the lens of the eye. This allows the light to come into focus on the retina, where it is converted into a message that the brain can understand.

Sometimes, though, refraction can go wrong, causing what’s called nearsightedness or farsightedness. When people are nearsighted, it means they can see things that are close to them, but not far away. Usually, this is caused by the eye being too long, causing light to focus in front of the retina. When people are farsighted, it means they can see things that are far away, but not things that are close. Usually, this is caused by the eye being too short, causing light to focus behind the retina. Both nearsightedness and farsightedness can also be caused by problems with the shape of the eye’s lens.

Thankfully, errors in refraction can be corrected with eyeglasses. First, an eye doctor (an optometrist) tests a patient’s vision to figure out her prescription (a way of measuring a person’s vision). From there, an engineer uses this prescription to make unique lenses. This lens is engineered to refract light so that it focuses in just the right spot on the retina, allowing the patient to see clearly.

Eyeglasses through the Ages

Eyeglasses have undergone many changes as engineers have figured out more efficient ways to craft them… and as fashion has changed, too! Here are a few historical photos from our Archive and a piece from our Collection at the museum! You can learn more about eyeglasses and fashion from our recent blog post, parts of which are adapted below:

The museum’s artifact collections offer a retrospective look (which is 20/20, of course) at the history of innovation in eyewear. Pince-nez spectacles, which had no earpieces and stayed in place with a nose clip were quite popular early in the 20th century but fell out of fashion as they became associated with older generations.

Want to download these directions? Click here for a handy PDF!

Follow along with our Daily Discovery! Click here for all activities that you can do at home.

References & Additional Resources

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Daily Discovery: Drawing Music/ Descubrimiento en casa: “Dibujando” música

Post written by Eisen Tamkun, Music Programming Lead.

Daily Discovery: Drawing Music

Music has the power to influence our emotions. Have you ever gotten a chill or thrill while listening to your favorite music? Listening to music is an easy way to alter your mood or relieve stress. Gain a deeper understanding of how music influences us by drawing!

Supplies:

  • Drawing Paper
  • Favorite drawing utensils: pens, pencils, paint, etc.
  • Listening device: iPhone, Computer, etc.

Instructions:

1. Take your paper and divide it into four sections. Label each section 1-4 in the top right corner.
2. Once you are ready to start drawing in section 1, begin playing Blowin’ in the Wind by Bob Dylan. Be sure there are no noises besides the song (works best with headphones). Continue drawing until the song is completely over. Listen and let the song guide your drawing. It can be shapes, images, or anything in between. If need be play through the song a second time (or more if you want!)
3. Move to section 2 on your paper and play Für Elise by Beethoven. Repeat Step 2 and listen to the whole song through letting it guide your drawing!
4. For section 3 listen to Walking on Sunshine by Katrina and the Waves. Repeat Step 2.
5. Lastly, for section 4 play Take Me Home, Country Roads by John D. Repeat Step 2.

Now see if one of your family members can guess which one of your drawings match each song!

Want to download these directions? Click here for a handy PDF!

Follow along with our Daily Discovery! Click here for all activities that you can do at home.

 

Traducido por Károl de Rueda y Laura Vilaret-Tuma.

Descubrimiento en casa: “Dibujando” música

La música tiene el poder de influir en nuestras emociones. ¿Haz sentido alguna sensación de alegría o emoción mientras escuchas tu música favorita? Esta puede cambiarnos el humor y aliviar el estrés. Aprendamos cómo la música nos puede inspirar ¡mientras dibujamos!

Artículos necesarios:

  •  Hojas de papel
  • Utensilios para dibujar: plumas, lápices de color, pinturas, marcadores, etc.
  • Algún aparato para poder escuchar música: teléfono, computadora, radio, etc.
  • Opcional: audífonos

Instrucciones:

  1. Divide un papel en cuatro secciones. Numera del 1 al 4 la esquina superior derecha de cada sección.
  2.  Comienza a escuchar tu canción favorita, asegurándote de que no haya ningún otro ruido a tu alrededor (esta actividad funciona mejor con audífonos), y utilizando la sección número 1 del papel, comienza a dibujar lo que quieras mientras la escuchas. Deja que la música te guíe. Puedes trazar figuras, imágenes o cualquier cosa que sientas. Escucha la canción las veces que quieras mientras continúas expresándote por medio de lo que dibujas.
  3. Para el papel número 2, pon otra canción. Repite lo que hiciste anteriormente y escucha la canción entera mientras esta te guía para crear arte.
  4. Para los papeles números 3 y 4, escucha otras canciones que te gusten.
  5. Estas son algunas recomendaciones de nuestras canciones favoritas:
    • Foo Foo por Santana
    • Octopus’s Garden por The Beatles
    • Etude Op. 25 No. 11 (Winter Wind) por Chopin
    Tu rumba por iLe
    • Tu canción preferida.
    Para terminar, podrías ver si alguno de tus familiares puede adivinar las canciones que representan tus dibujos.

¿Te gustaría descargar esta actividad? Haz clic aquí para obtener un archivo PDF.

Para encontrar actividades, ideas y mucho más descubrimiento en casa, ¡síguenos!

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Fort Collins & The Flu: 1918-1919

Post written by Sarah Frahm, Archive Assistant.

Fort Collins & The Flu: 1918-1919

What did Fort Collins look like the last time the city faced a widespread shutdown? From the fall of 1918 through the early spring of 1919 the citizens of Fort Collins found themselves under varying stages of quarantine due to the influenza epidemic. One document, currently at the Archive, that gives some insight into how the city officials handled the epidemic and quarantining of the population is a “Summary of Advisory Committee Recommendations.”

Fort Collins Quarantine Recommendations

Most telling about the problems the city faced in managing the flu epidemic is that the advisory committee was not even formed until December 1918, despite influenza raging in the city since at least October. According to an October 18th article in The Weekly Courier the state board of health had ordered the closing of “everything” in Colorado  but that those in charge of the college campus, where men were still doing military training, would not close the campus. The previous week an editorial had appeared in the newspaper demanding a “rigid quarantine be established” and that the city should be “shut down tight” like Boulder and Greeley. By the end of the October both the college and the city had enacted some form of closure, although without official documents it is a challenge to tell just how strenuous the shutdown was. Another article mid-November from The Weekly Courier complains that “quarantine has not been very rigid of late” with November seeing both elections and the armistice ending World War One and that these events and gatherings led to a rising in the number of flu cases.

 

The convening of a citizen advisory committee to the city board of health seems to be a recognition that the previous handling of the flu epidemic had been somewhat ad hoc and unclear (the November issues of The Weekly Courier discuss whether masks should be worn, or not, and if quarantine would be lifted, or not) and in need of some sort of codification.

But how did these regulations, once adopted, affect the citizens of Fort Collins? The first two points recommended by the advisory committee were not all that different from the quarantining, done before and after the influenza epidemic, for other diseases, like measles or scarlet fever. However, the third recommendation of shutting down schools and “ordinary public gatherings” was different. Social and fraternal clubs closed, such as the Elks (in April 1919, The Fort Collins Courier reports that the lodge was in remarkable good financial health despite having been closed for nearly three months. The women’s gymnasium, on the other hand, found itself struggling to have enough members in March.) The superintendent of the school district reported in the summer of 1919 that the school year had been full of “anxiety, hindrance, and depression” and that many of the plans for academic work had to be abandoned.

 The Elks Lodge was located at 202 Linden Street and was closed during the influenza quarantine.

If the lack of proper schooling and a severe curtail on social life were not bad enough, the fourth recommendation from the advisory committee was an extreme frustration to many in Fort Collins. Shortly after the requirement limiting the number of people in any place of business came out The Weekly Courier wrote an editorial telling people to quit complaining, pointing out that they too had to deal with these restrictions upon their office (if someone was to visit the newspaper office, a member of staff would have to leave in order to maintain the proper number of people per square footage). The editorial admonished the people the writer considered to be “knockers” to take the disease more seriously for the sake of the survival of the city.

While the committee was extremely serious on the subject of loafing on the streets (how else does a recommendation get to be written not only in capital letters but also underlined and starred?) the record of impact on peoples’ lives of that specific order is currently unknown. Rather it is the suborder that bares out most in the historical record. The committee called for a special officer to be appointed. The man who became “Quarantine Officer” was Orrin J. Watrous, then the secretary of the Fort Collins Commercial Club. According to The Fort Collins Express writing about the official vote of thanks put forth by the city government to Watrous, Mr. Watrous daily visited between “a dozen to twenty houses in his quarantine rounds” in order to ensure people were properly following the orders of the city.

Orrin Watrous, pictured here at the far right with a cigar in his mouth and boxing gloves on his hands.

When people did not follow quarantine regulations, there were consequences. One farmer, a Mr. Tom Hale, accused of breaking the quarantine on his house, had to go to court on December 27th and face trial. The Weekly Courier reported that Mr. Hale’s case was dismissed. While it is not clear what kind of fine or other penalty Mr. Hale would have had if he had been found guilty, his case is still an example of the added difficulties of living life under quarantine.

It is difficult to know, exactly, how people felt about the restrictions placed upon them by the city government. Currently there is only access to a weekly newspaper (even though the newspaper also ran dailies, Archive staff cannot get to them right now) and while there are potentially useful items held in the Archive collection, with our own doors closed, a lot of the details will have to remain unknown for the current time.

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Daily Discovery: Baking with History – Fort Collins Brownies/ Descubrimiento en casa: Recetas con historia – bizcochos de chocolate (brownies) de Fort Collins

Post written by Charlotte Conway, Public Programs Coordinator.

Daily Discovery: Baking with History – Fort Collins Brownies

Have you ever had trouble getting a brownie recipe to rise? High altitude baking requires special adjustments to get the same results as lower altitudes. Lucky for us, people from FoCo history have already developed recipes perfect for baking in our Colorado high altitude.

Learn about Dr. Inga Allison, a figure from Fort Collins history, who developed the science for high altitude baking, and then grab a parent to help you bake through history!

Dr. Inga Allison’s High Altitude Brownies Recipe

Inga Allison joined the Home Economics Department at Fort Collins’ Colorado Agriculture College from 1903 to 1908, at a time when several faculty members were starting to study the unique effects of high altitude on both crop growth and food preparation. Lacking an established lab, Allison conducted her experiments in cooking at altitude with improvised equipment in challenging conditions – baking, for example, in a rough Estes Park shanty located at 11,800 feet above sea level!

You can thank Dr. Allison for most brownie recipes that work here in Fort Collins – they most likely take into account the science developed by Dr. Allison! Follow along with her original brownie recipe on the next page!

Want to download these directions? Click here for a handy PDF!

Follow along with our Daily Discovery! Click here for all activities that you can do at home.

 

Traducido por Károl de Rueda y Laura Vilaret-Tuma.

Descubrimiento en casa: Recetas con historia – bizochos de chocolate (brownies) de Fort Collins

¿Alguna vez has tenido algún problema siguiendo recetas de brownies? En Colorado -y en lugares con gran altitud- el hornear ciertos platillos requiere ajustes especiales para obtener los mismos resultados que en lugares con altitudes más bajas. Pero por suerte, existen recetas locales comprobadas que sirven para hornear con éxito en nuestra área.

Conoce a la Dra. Inga Allison; una figura histórica de nuestra ciudad que descubrió la ciencia para hornear en elevaciones altas. Con la ayuda de un adulto, usa esta receta histórica ajustada por ella para hacer unos brownies, ¡y comparte el delicioso resultado con tu familia!

Horneando pasteles con diferentes alturas.

Columna A – Pasteles horneados al nivel del mar sin ningún ajustamiento.

Columna B – Pasteles horneados al nivel del mar con ajustamiento de levadura en polvo.

Columna C – Pasteles horneados con recetas correctamente balanceadas para elevaciones altas.

Un archivo de la colección del museo que representa el experimento de una misma receta horneada a diferentes niveles de altura. A 3,048 metros (10,000 pies), a 1,524 metros (5,000 pies), y al nivel del mar. Observa cómo cambia la estructura de cada postre.

Receta de brownies ajustada por la Dra. Inga Allison

Inga Allison se unió al Departamento de Economía Doméstica en el Colegio Universitario de Agricultura de Fort Collins de 1903 a 1908. En aquel entonces, muchos miembros de la facultad empezaron a estudiar los efectos de la altura en el crecimiento de los cultivos y la preparación de alimentos. El colegio no tenía un laboratorio disponible, por tanto, Allison comenzó sus experimentos sobre la cocción en elevaciones altas con equipos improvisados y bajo condiciones difíciles; por ejemplo, horneaba en una cabina desgastada localizada en el pueblo de Estes Park, que está a unos 3,596 metros (aproximadamente 11,800 pies) de altura.

Podemos agradecerle a la Dra. Allison por desarrollar la ciencia que influye en la mayoría de las recetas de brownies creadas aquí en Fort Collins. ¡Sigue su receta original traducida en la página siguiente!

Receta para hacer bizcochos de chocolate (brownies) de Fort Collins:

Ingredientes:

  •  2/3 taza de harina de trigo
  • 1/2 cucharadita de levadura en polvo
  • 1/4 cucharadita de sal
  • 1/3 taza de manteca vegetal
  • 2 barras de chocolate sin azúcar
  • 1 taza de azúcar blanca
  • 2 huevos batidos
  • 1/2 taza de nueces
  • 1 cucharadita de vainilla
  • Para alturas de 2,286 metros (aproximadamente 7,500 pies) o de 3,048 metros (10,000 pies) sobre el nivel del mar, añade 1/4 cucharadita de levadura en polvo

Instrucciones:

Derrite la manteca vegetal junto con el chocolate a baño maría. En otro recipiente, agrega gradualmente el azúcar a los huevos batidos hasta que estén completamente mezclados. Agrégales la mezcla de chocolate y bate. Adjunta todos los ingredientes secos y mézclalos hasta que estén incorporados. Incluye las nueces y la vainilla. Coloca la mezcla en un refractario engrasado tamaño 20x20x5 centímetros (8x8x2 pulgadas) y hornea por 35 minutos a 180ºC (350ºF). Cuando esté todavía caliente, corta en forma de cuadros. Retíralos del recipiente y déjalos enfriar. Rinde para 2 docenas de brownies.

¿Te gustaría descargar esta actividad? Haz clic aquí para obtener un archivo PDF.

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Daily Discovery: Agriculture in Action!

Post written by Hannah Curtis, Education Assistant.

Daily Discovery: Agriculture in Action!

Agriculture and farming have a long history in Fort Collins and all over the globe. Most of the time we only see the end product, the fruits and vegetables at the grocery store. With this activity, see what happens under the dirt through experimentation with the scientific method!

Follow along through Facebook and Instagram with museum educator Hannah as she demonstrates this experiment in her own home. Happy Farming!

Supplies:

General:

  • Water
  • Indoor space with sunlight
  • Sharpie or marker
  • Paper and pencil to record daily observations
  • Potting soil and planter (optional)

Growing Produce from seeds:

  • Seeds (dried beans, flower seeds, other fruit or vegetable seeds)
  • Baking tray or cutting board
  • Paper towels
  • Spray bottle (optional)
  • Ziploc bags

Re-Growing Produce from Kitchen Scraps:

  • Kitchen scraps (celery base, lettuce heart, green onion base, yellow onion top)
  • Small bowls or containers
  • Sharp kitchen knife and adult supervision

Instructions:

For ages 3-5:

  1. Review what plants and flowers need to grow and walk through the stages of plant growth.
  2. The Ziploc bag method can be easily monitored and observed, but we recommend setting up a method together that works best for your household. See procedures below.
  3. Ask your young scientist what they think will happen to the produce or seeds? Talk about different plants they have seen and discuss how they grow or where their favorite fruits and vegetables come from.
  4. Observe and talk about what is happening to your produce or seeds every day.

For ages 6 and up:

  1. Review what plants and flowers need to grow and walk through the stages of plant growth.
  2. Work through the scientific process before proceeding with the experiment. Decide on an experiment you want to test.
  3. Write down your answers for the scientific process and create your method for observation.
  4. Depending on your growing method, follow the procedures below.
  5. Record your observations every day in an observational chart, farming journal or a photo archive. As your produce grows you can look back on previous days, predict what will happen next and share with family and friends!
  6.  Follow along with Hannah as she tests her experiment in her home.

Want to download these directions? Click here for a handy PDF!

Follow along with our Daily Discovery! Click here for all activities that you can do at home.

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Daily Discovery: What’s Up With Yeast?

Post written by Heidi Furhman, Discovery Camp Coordinator.

Daily Discovery: What’s Up With Yeast?

What is yeast? How does it work? Why is it important for making the breads and treats we all love? Learn about yeast through our video “What’s Up With Yeast” and conduct this experiment to observe yeast at work for yourself!

Supplies:

  • Clear Bottle (water bottles work well)
  • Warm water
  • Package of Yeast
  • Sugar
  • Balloon

What is Yeast?

Check out our video “What’s Up With Yeast?” to discover the connection between bread and balloons, and explore what yeast is, how it works in bread dough, and what kinds of yeast people have been using for hundreds of years.

As you watch, conduct this experiment along with our educator Heidi!

Instructions:

  1. Gather your supplies! You’ll need a clear bottle, a balloon, warm water, sugar, and a package of yeast.
  2. Stretch out your balloon. Try blowing it up a couple of times to loosen it up.
  3. Add one to two inches of warm water to a clear bottle. Make sure the water is warm to the touch but not hot! If your water is too hot you’ll kill the yeast. A good test is to hold your wrist under the running water. If you can’t stand it the water is too hot! Which purposes does the warm water serve to help the yeast thrive? (Moisture and warmth).
  4. Add the package of yeast to the bottle. It will work if you use less than the whole package just adjust the sugar in ratio. (Note: A smaller amount of yeast will take longer to blow up the balloon). Mix up the water and yeast.
  5. Add about 1 Tablespoon of sugar to the yeast and water mixture and stir it around (or about equal parts yeast and sugar). What purpose does the sugar serve to help the yeast thrive? (Food).
  6.  Stretch the balloon over the top of the opening and set in a warm place for about 15-20 minutes.
  7. Observe what happened? What do you notice about the yeast mixture? Does it look different than when you put it in? What about the balloon has it expanded? What does that tell you about the yeast? What is causing the balloon to expand (carbon dioxide released by the yeast is filling the balloon!)
  8. You can leave your experiment alone for several hours or days and keep observing! Does your balloon keep expanding? What about the yeast? What happens to it? At some point the yeast will consume all the food and stop releasing carbon dioxide. Your balloon will likely deflate.
  9. You can try the experiment again! Try adding more yeast and sugar or less yeast and sugar. How does that impact the time it takes for the balloon to inflate? Try using hot water or cold water. What happens then? Is your yeast able to grow? If yes, does it grow faster or slower? If no, why do you think your yeast was unable to grow? (Packaged yeast needs warm water to reactivate since it’s suspended in a forced hibernation state. Too cold, and your yeast will not be reactivated, too hot and you’ll kill it!

Sourdough Starters

You can try making your own sourdough starter at home to observe living yeast! Remember it can take some practice and a whole lot of patience to get it right, but just about anyone can do it! If it doesn’t work the first time try again!

You’ll need flour, water, and a glass jar to get started.

Try this to get you started or google “Sourdough Starter” for many amazing resources and recipes to get you started.

Want to download these directions? Click here for a handy PDF!

Follow along with our Daily Discovery! Click here for all activities that you can do at home.

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Daily Discovery: Solar System String Model

Post written by Sierra Tamkun, Learning Experiences Manager. This activity was adapted from NASA/JPL.

Daily Discovery: Solar System String Model

How big is our solar system? Really, REALLY big! Astronomers use a unit of measurement called an Astronomical Unit, or AU, to calculate the distances of different planets from the sun and measure the size of our solar system. One AU is equal to the distance from the sun to Earth, about 93 million miles (150 million kilometers)! Use the chart in the linked PDF of relative distances provided to build your very own to-scale model of our solar system and planets!

Supplies:

  • Measuring tape with centimeter markings
  • 4.5-meter-long piece of string
  • Large craft pony beads (or other craft beads) in various colors
  • Small piece of cardboard or wood to wrap solar system string around

Instructions:

  1. Pick out different beads to represent each planet and the sun! Look for beads that are roughly the same colors – blue for Earth, red for Mars, green for Uranus, etc.
  2. Tie the bead representing your sun to the end of your string.
  3. Using the distances (in centimeters) in the chart below, measure the distance from the sun to the first planet, Mercury.
  4. Tie Mercury in place on your sting. Tip: ask an adult to help you to make sure it stays in place!
  5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 for each planet.
  6. Lay your sting out on the floor to see the relative distance between all the planets in our solar system!

On your solar system string, all the planets are in a line so we can see the distances between them, but in space, the planets all orbit around the sun. Want to see your string of planets in orbiting action? Have a friend or family member hold the sun, while you stand apart from them holding the end. With the string pulled tight, walk counter-clockwise around your friend to see how the planets circle the sun in outer space!

This activity was adapted from NASA/JPL. Explore more at https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/.

Want to download these directions? Click here for a handy PDF!

Follow along with our Daily Discovery! Click here for all activities that you can do at home.

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