Thursday, January 7, 2010

Brazil and the Amazon Rainforest

Did you know that one third of the world's oxygen comes from the Amazon rainforest? Did you know that one quarter of the world's animal species live in the Amazon rainforest? Did you know that one third of Brazil's entire population lives in slums?

Well, I didn't. Learning along with your kids is a great (and humbling) benefit of homeschooling.

Z-Man cracking Brazil nuts with a hammer. I love the look on his face! Apparently, this is easier to do if you freeze the nuts for 24 hours before cracking. Who knew? It's probably easier if you use a handy-dandy device called a nut cracker too.

Fun with another rainforest food: cocoa! We tried it with and without a sweetener because I have a mean streak. No, no! Goodness, no. It was because it was a science experiment, after all. Naturally, we had to ingest the results. Edible science experiments: A Good Thing.

Both of these foods, along with natural remedies of the rainforest, are described in fascinating detail in this book:

Tomorrow I'll show you some of the resources we're using and show you our beautiful rainforest shoebox dioramas!

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