When Elijah was born I knew right away I would never put him into Boy Scouts. The Boy Scouts were not inclusive, and for all I knew Elijah might be gay. More than that, I didn’t want to support an organization that was bigoted towards LGBTQI people. It just doesn’t match up with our family values. Even now that they have made the move to allow gay scouts in the program, I am still offended at their refusal to allow LGBTQI troop leaders, as if they think anyone who doesn’t fit into their narrow gender/sexuality binary is a child molester.
I’m pretty proud of this one.
Elijah wanted to do an experiment. He wanted to put food coloring in water. I asked him what he would be testing with this, what was the objective, and he said we should put salt in it too. I was pretty annoyed. He just wanted to mix random stuff together! That was no way to teach him the scientific method. But when I thought about it, really, did it matter that much? Did there need to be an objective every time? Maybe the point should just be to encourage his creativity, which, after all, is a crucial skill for scientific thought later on down the road.
But I still felt that at least we needed something to compare, so I agreed to do two cups, both with salt, both with food coloring, but one with hot water and one with cold. I figured it would be a lesson in diffusion, which one would mix all the colors better. We put the salt in the cups, then the water, then the food coloring, and guess what happened?
Elijah has been super into what he calls science experiments lately. This makes me feel awfully proud, since that was always kind of my thing as a kid, but it has at times been a mess when I find his stashed concoctions and potions made of toothpaste, body wash, Halloween candy he can’t eat because of his food allergies, and God knows what else. I want to encourage it in a more directed manner, but I often find myself at a loss when he says he wants to make a potion or do an experiment. “Sure, you can help me make laundry soap!” Is not usually the kind of activity he’s hoping for.