Monday, October 29, 2012

The Mummy

Currently we are studying ancient Egypt...and Halloween is on it's way...that means only one thing can be happening in our house...that's right...we are making mummies!

Now were to find a body to mummify?

Stop that thought...

Back when I was in 6th grade we studied ancient Egypt...and we made a mummy...out of something that has a skin and mushy insides...we mummified bananas!

And so we continue that in our home school...a mummified banana.

It all started with a banana...or two as a little girl had to get involved.

The Ancient Egyptians used natron to dry their we are plum out of natron (a natural salt) we used a whole container of plain table salt (not the "good salt".)

Then we also discussed the climate of and dry.  As we live in a place that is cold and moist, we decided to counteract that with the oven put on very low.

After a few hours of that, the mummies where left in their pan in the oven overnight.  The next day, we found that the salt had turned hard.  We got out our hammers and rather a butter knife and chipped away at the salt.  It came off the mummies in big chunks revealing that our mummies had turned red.  This then led to the conversation concerning chemical reactions and moisture extraction as well as similarities and differences between people and in people do not have sugar levels that caramelize.

I had an old sheet that I use in the garden as a frost protector that we tore a few strips from to be the "linen" wrappings of the mummy.  W. learned that wrapping a mummy is very difficult.  Then the mummies were placed on a plate on top of the refrigerator.  The steady warmth of the fridge plus the heat rises factor will mimic the heat of Egypt for the next few weeks as we wait to raid the tomb of the mummy.

To be continued....

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