Monday, October 15, 2012

It's Hot Down There!

Our earth is amazing! Can you believe that what we see in nature - as awesome and amazing as that is - is just the tip of the iceberg? There are so many more things that we can't even see that are amazing about this old earth of ours. It is almost impossible for me to believe that some would teach homeschool evolution, when the facts and evidence are so abundant in showing that there was intelligent design involved in the creation of this world.

Under this dirt that we are standing on, is what is called the earth's crust. The sediment covering the earth's crust is about 22 miles thick in some places... which considering how big our earth is - that is pretty thin. Under this layer of sediments is the earth's crust - which consists mostly of rock. The amazing thing about this is that the deeper you go the warmer the rock gets. At the bottom of the earth's crust about 20 -25 miles beneath our feet - the temperature is hotter than 900 degrees!

Welcome to middle earth... I don't think so! This layer is called the mantle and is about 1800 miles thick and makes up the biggest part of the earth's interior. Still the temperature of this mantle rock increases the deeper you go. So, there would be no welcome here - we would burn up!

The final level is the core. This is the innermost part of our earth. This sphere shaped core is nearly 4400 miles across. The core of our earth is composed of dense metals like iron and nickel. Just like we have said before the temperature gets higher as you go so this part of the earth has a temperature of over 9000*. There are actually two parts to the core - the molten iron and nickel outer core and the inner core.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Paramecium, please!

As we looked at before, the cell is an amazing thing! It is miniscule yet it is the foundational workhorse for all living things. There is another type of cell called the paramecium. This is a protozoa (a complete cell) that looks like a slipper. The paramecium is a hairy little guy, these hairs are called cilia. The cilia are like the paramecium's oars. They help it move. The cilia also help the paramecium eat. When food is found near, the cilia close around it and begin to absorb it.

Paramecium are found in almost all bodies of fresh water. Yet, some protozoans are dangerous to humans because they carry disease. Malaria is a disease that is passed on to humans from protozoans carried by a mosquito. Yet, most protozoans are beneficial because they eat algae!

Can you believe that these tiny creatures were discovered by an amateur scientist who studied and experimented in his spare time? Anton van Leeuwenhoek liked to study nature and had special lenses made so he could see things close up. One day he held these lenses up to a drop of water. He was shocked to see tiny little creatures swimming in it!