How to Make Polymer Jewelry


Polymer clay can be baked in a conventional oven instead of a kiln. This is because polymer clay hardens at a lower temperature than earthen clays, making it an ideal type of clay for children to work with. You can make a variety of different projects using polymer clay, including colorful and artistic jewelry that can be given as handmade gifts to friends and family members.

Things You Will Need:

 –       Polymer Clay

–       Clay Knife

–       Toothpick



  • 1 Roll 8 oz. of polymer clay into a 1/2-inch-thick snake. Polymer clay comes in many different colors, or you can select white polymer clay that can be painted after it is baked.
  • 2 Cut the clay snake into 1/2-inch-long pieces using a clay knife.
  • 3 Roll each piece of clay around in your hands to soften it. Mold the clay into the shape you want for each bead.
  • 4 Insert a toothpick into the middle of each bead, then pull out the toothpick to create the bead hole.
  • 5 Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Bake the beads on a cookie sheet for 10 minutes. Let the beads cool.
  • 6 Cut one 18-inch length and one 8-inch length of elastic string.
  • 7 Thread beads onto both strings, leaving open space on both ends of each string.
  • 8 Tie the ends of the long piece of string together in a knot. This will create the beaded necklace.
  • 9 Tie the ends of the short piece of string together in a knot. This will make the beaded bracelet.


Tips & Warnings

  • Use acrylic paint to paint or decorate polymer clay beads after they have been baked.

How to Make Polymer Clay


Polymer clay, with its fine texture and bright colors, is enjoyable to work with and is ideal for a variety of craft projects. You can use polymer clay to make sculptures, beads, buttons, Christmas ornaments and more. Homemade polymer clay behaves in much the same way as commercial polymer clay, but it may shrink more. Therefore, experiment with the clay before embarking on a huge project so you know how large to make your shapes.


  • To make your own homemade polymer clay, combine the following ingredients in a Teflon-coated pot: 1 cup of white school glue, 1 cup of cornstarch, 2 tbs. of mineral oil and 1 tbs. of lemon juice. Stir constantly as you cook the mixture over low heat for about 10 minutes. The dough will begin to form a ball and pull away from the sides of the pot. Remove the pot from the heat, and allow the dough to cool until you can comfortably handle it. Knead the dough until it has a nice, smooth consistency.


  • Homemade polymer clay is white unless you add color. To add color to your clay, you can add tempura powder to the mixture while you are cooking it. For light or pastel colors, just add a small amount of tempura powder. For bright, bold colors, add more. You can always add more powder as you stir, so start with a small amount of powder and add more as needed.
  • To store homemade polymer clay, place it in an airtight container, such as a plastic food storage container or a zippered plastic bag. Place the clay in a cool, dark place. When you get the clay out to use once again, you will probably have to knead it until it is room temperature before it regains its malleability.


Frog Dissection Project

2nd Quarter Science Project

Dissection: FROG

 PROBLEM: What are the external an internal features of the frog?


1. To be acquainted with the external anatomy of the frog.

2. To be acquainted with the internal anatomy of the frog.

3. To locate the structures, organs, and systems of the frog.

4. To assess the function of structures from observing the actual anatomy of the organism.

5. To learn and practice dissection technique.

Materials and Equipment

–          Dissection tray

–          Scalpel

–          Scissors

–          Tweezers

–          Frog

–          Ruler

–          Gloves


Frogs are part of phylum Chordata and are in the class Amphibia. Although the salamander might be more “typical” amphibian, the frog is fun to dissect and a good learning experience.

Introduction to Dissection

1. To successfully follow dissection, it is essential to be familiar with the following terms:

Dorsal – the back or upper surface of an organism

Ventral – the stomach or lower surface of an organism

Anterior – head end of an organism

Posterior – tail end of an organism

2. Dissecting involves the use of sharp cutting instruments like the scalpel and scissors. Use care!

3. Important: Whenever using scissors to cut into a specimen, make sure to keep the tip of the scissors pointed up so as not to dig down into the specimen, damaging the organs to be viewed.

4. Gloves: It is advisable to buy gloves and use them for dissecting.

5. Making and labeling drawings for dissection labs:


a) Make drawings as accurate as possible to what you actually see.

b) When adding labels, the label line should be straight and should not cross each other. The line should not have arrows on them and should go directly to the object they indicate and touch it or be drawn into it. Although the label lines may be horizontal, diagonal, or vertical, the label writing must always be horizontal. Refer to the diagram above.


Part A: External Features

21. Place a frog, dorsal side up, in a dissecting pan. You will be finding and identifying distinctive structures. Refer to the diagram of the external structures as needed.

2. Locate the following structures on your own specimen and label them on the picture in question 9 of Part 1 of the questions section:  eyes, nostrils, tympanic membrane, nictitating membrane, thumb, foreleg, and webbed hindleg.

3. Carefully examine the legs of the frog: Record the answers to the questions in Part 1 of the questions section.

a. Measure the length of the foreleg and hindleg.

b. Measure the length of the whole frog from nose to legs stretched out behind.

c. Count how many digits there are on the foreleg and hindleg.

d. Check to see if the forelegs are webbed. Check to see if the hindlegs are webbed.

e. Locate the thumbs on each foreleg. In males, the thumb is thickened and large.

4. Focus on the head region. Look carefully at the bulging eyes. Notice how they are situated, to enable the frog to see to the front and to the sides. Also, find the nictitating membrane – a transparent eyelid that moves from the bottom of the eye to the top. What is the purpose of this eyelid? Record your answers in Part 1.

5. The tympanic membrane is a circular membrane located below the eye. What is the purpose of this membrane?

6. Examine the mouth of the frog. To open the mouth wide, use the scissors to cut the hinges joints at both corners of the mouth. Spread the mouth open. Refer to the diagram of the mouth to find the following structures:


a. Find the tongue. Locate where it is attached to the floor of the mouth.

b. Find the glottis, gullet, esophagus, Eustachian tubes (on the sides of the upper jaw), vocal sacs (on the sides of the lower jaw), nostrils (externally and internally), and teeth.

c. The gullet is the opening into the esophagus.

d. Look to see if there are vocal sacs. If not, perhaps your specimen is a female. Only males have these openings which are used for croaking.

e. Locate the external and internal nostrils. Use a probe to stick through the nostrils from the outside in.

f. Find two sets of teeth. Rub your finger along the top jaw to feel the maxillary teeth. Find the vomerine teeth located on the roof of the mouth.

Part B: Internal Features

Note: Use goggles. 

7. Place the frog ventral side up on the dissecting pan/tray.

8. Refer on the dotted lines on the diagram at the bottom. Using your scalpel, make a small opening through the skin slightly anterior of the anus. Insert the scissors and cut anteriorly to the tip of the lower jaw. (Make sure you are only cutting the skin.) Make additional cuts across the bottom of the forelegs and the top of the hindlegs extending the cuts to the mid-body. Cut the two flaps of skin off, exposing the muscle layer. Cut away the skin between the forelegs and the lower jaw also. Examine the skin. Look at the underside of the skin. Answer question 9 of Part 2 of the questions section.



9. To expose the cavity, it is necessary to cut away the muscle layer. To do this, repeat the procedure for cutting away the skin. Make an incision just anterior of the anus and follow the same cutting pattern. You will find that it will be more difficult to cut along the middle up to the lower jaw because when you reach the fore legs, you must cut through the sternum (breastbone). Continue cutting, using the pattern for the skin, until you have cut away the muscle tissue, exposing the organs.

Do not cut too deeply. It is essential to keep your scissor tips pointing upward while cutting to avoid damage to the internal organs and insuring that you are only cutting the muscle layer. 

10. If your specimen is a female, when the body cavity is exposed, you may see a mass of black and white eggs. You will need to remove these carefully in order to locate the other organs. To remove, lift it up with your fingers and find the place where they are attached. Work them by pinching them off from that attachment and pulling them out. (Also note, you may still have a female specimen even though there are no black and white eggs present.)

11. Once the interior structures are exposed clearly, start to locate the structures of the different systems of the frog. Label the diagram in Part 2 of the questions section. Refer to the diagram of the internal structures of the frog if necessary.

Digestive System:


12. When the frog ingests its food, it passes along the esophagus to the stomach. From the stomach, the food passes through the small intestines, through short large intestines where indigestible food passes into the cloaca and then is eliminated from the body through the anus. The cloaca is a versatile organ, being the passageway for wastes, bot solid and liquid, as well as the reproductive gametes, the sperm or eggs.

13. The most prominent organ you will see is a large, reddish multi-lobed organ, the liver. Gently lift up the lobes of the liver and find a small greenish sac, the gall bladder. Remove the live by feeling under it to find its attachment and gently pinch it off there and pull it out. Count how many lobes it has, record your answer in Part 2 of the questions section.

4. The stomach, a beige organ should be visible now. Follow it anteriorly to find the esophagus and posteriorly to find the small and large intestine and the cloaca.

15. Locate the pancreas—a dark, grainy flat organ that lies between the stomach and the small intestines.

16. The spleen is located along the intestines. It is a small, dark, round organ.

17. Carefully: Remove the digestive system by making a cut at the esophagus and then pulling up carefully on the stomach and along the intestines to the urinary bladder (looks like a clear, deflated balloon). Cut just anterior of the urinary bladder. If there are mesenteries (a clear, stringy-like membrane that holds body structures in place), tease them carefully away from the organs with a probe. Gently pull the organs out in one piece. *If you do not do this carefully, you could damage structures of the excretory and reproductive systems.

18. Cut open the stomach to see if there is any recognizable food left there.

19. Label the following structures on the diagram in Part B: liver, gall bladder, stomach, esophagus, small intestines, large intestines, cloaca, pancreas, spleen, and anus.

 Circulatory System:

 20. The frog’s three-chambered heart is the central organ of the circulatory system. Its two atria and one ventricle pump blood through the system of veins and arteries, much like a mammalian heart. The atria are soft in texture and the ventricles are muscular.

21. Locate the heart enclosed in its special sac, called the pericardium. With a probe,    tease away the pericardial sac from the heart.

 Respiratory System:

22. The frog receives oxygen in three ways, through its skin, through the lining in its mouth and through the lungs. When it does not need much oxygen, breathing through its skin is sufficient; if more oxygen is needed, it can supplement its oxygen supply through its mouth lining, and for maximum need, the frog’s lungs are added.

23. The lungs, two filmy or spongy organs, lie dorsal to the heart. They are connected to the trachea which opens into the mouth cavity. Find the lungs. The trachea can be found by inserting a probe down the glottis. Label the following structure on the picture in Part 2: lungs and trachea.

 Excretory system:

24. The wastes and excess water are filtered by the kidney and then travel through the ureters to the cloaca and finally to the urinary bladder where it is stored until eliminated.

25. The kidneys are located under the reproductive structures, and are attached to the dorsal wall by the mesentery. Carefully remove the mesentery from one of the kidneys.

Trace the excretory system by following the ureters, found at the posterior end of the kidneys, to the cloaca and the urinary bladder. The urinary bladder looks like a deflated transparent sac usually pressed against the body wall.

26. Label the kidney, ureters, cloaca, and urinary bladder on the picture in Part 2.

Reproductive system:



27. In the female frog, the ovaries sit above the kidneys as a large, lobed structure. When the ovary fills with eggs, it bursts, spilling the eggs into the body cavity. The eggs travel down the oviducts to the uterus where they are stored until expelled through the cloaca. The male frog has two oval testes. The sperm they produce travel through the kidneys to the cloaca.

28. For a male: Locate the mass of yellow feathery fat bodies. Attached to their posterior end are the small yellowish oval testes. Lift one of the testes to see if you can

locate the thin coiled tubules that connect it to the kidneys.

For a female: If there were not a mass of black and white eggs, the ovaries look like

lumpy sacs located between the yellow fat bodies and the kidneys. The oviducts are

thin and coiled leading to the uterus. If there were a mass of eggs when you first

exposed the body cavity, examine the area around the yellow fat bodies for what might

be left of the coiled oviducts or ovaries.

29. Carefully remove the reproductive structures.

30. Label the testes or ovary (eggs), oviducts on the picture in Part 2.

Nervous system:


31. The frog’s nervous system is made up of the central nervous system consisting of the brain and spinal cord, along with the peripheral nervous system which are all the nerves that transmit impulses to the sense organs and the muscles. The brain has five lobes: the cerebrum, the optic lobes, the cerebellum, olfactory lobes, and the medulla oblongata.

26. The brain is well protected so can be a

challenge to expose. First remove the skin

from the dorsal side of the head. Crack the

skull (without smashing the head) and chip

away the skull to reveal the brain.

Questions for Dissection: Frog

Part 1: External Features

 1. Answer the following questions:

a. What is the length of the foreleg?__________ Hindleg?__________

b. How do they compare and why?

c. What is the length of the frog’s body? _______________________

d. What is the ratio of the frog’s hind legs to its body length? _______

e. How many digits are on the foreleg? _______  Hindleg?_________

f. Are the forelegs webbed?________ Are the hindlegs webbed?______

2. What is the purpose of the nictitating membrane?

3. What is the function of the tympanic membrane?

4. Why is the tongue attached where it is?

5. Why does the gullet, the opening into the esophagus, have to be so big?

6. Do female frogs croak? Why or why not?

7. What do the maxillary teeth feel like?

What do the volmerine teeth feel like?

8. Fill in the pictures of the external structures with the appropriate labels: eyes, nostrils, tympanic membrane, thumb, nictitating membrane, foreleg, hind leg, and webbed hind foot.



Part 2: Internal Features

 1. Is the skin thick or thin? Are there a lot of blood vessels under the skin? Why is this important?

2. How many lobes does the liver have?

3. What part does the pancreas and spleen play in digestion?

4. Draw the brain in the space below and label the olfactory nerve, olfactory lobe, cerebrum, diencephlon, optic lobe, cerebellum, fourth ventricle, medulla oblongata, and spinal cord.

5. Fill in these pictures of the internal structures with the appropriate labels as you can: liver, gall bladder, stomach, esophagus, small intestines, large intestines, cloaca, pancreas, spleen, heart, lungs, kidney, urinary bladder, ovary, and oviduct.






Balloon Powered Race Car

Balloon Powered Race Car Project


  • to create a balloon powered race car for maximum speed between 0 and 3 meters
  • to incorporate Newton’s Laws of Motion

Part 1 (20 points)

Newton’s three laws seem to work perfectly on the chalkboard, but in real life we find that surfaces are seldom frictionless and that few moving objects are truly predictable.  This is because outside forces interfere with Newton’s perfect situations.  Balloon racers rely on Newton’s third law of motion.  As the air rushes backward out of the balloon it pushes the car forward in the opposite direction with an equal force.  Your job is to make the most of this force!  While building balloon racers we will discover how difficult it can be to make something work reliably.


  1. Wheels –plastic bottle caps, cd’s, spools of thread; you may cut-out your own wheels from paper, plastic, Styrofoam, metal, etc…
  2. Axle rod – The rod is the part attached to two wheels so they turn in unison. Small diameter plastic straws, coffee stirrers work well.  You may cut them or use a material of your choice.
  3. Axle housing – You slip the rod through the housing and attach the housing to the car. Regular plastic straws work well. They can be cut to any size you want.
  4. Body – anything you want, popsicle stick, cardboard, styrofoam, balsa wood etc… 
  5. 9” Balloon
  6. Various materials to construct the racers, all materials must be “stuff” lying around your house or school (except for tape or glue)!
  7. tape and glue
  8. You will receive:

–          a 9-inch balloon

–          straws

–          (if you need materials or ideas let me know and I will help you out)

  • Design and contest rules
  1. No kits or pre-made designs may be used. The car must be the individual’s invention.
  2. The car must be completely powered by the balloon.
  3. All self provided materials must not be purchased specifically for this contest; use items you have around the house or if not, ask me for materials from school.
  4. The balloon can be inflated to any size as long as it does not burst. Should the balloon burst during the run, it will count as an official run.
  5. Only 9-inch (22.5 cm) latex balloons will be used during the competition.
  6. The car must have a minimum of three wheels.
  • Judging:
  1. Cars will be tested on a smooth flat surface. Distance is measured from the starting line to the farthest point of travel, utilizing a straight line to connect the two points.
  2. The car must move a minimum of 3 meters, in order for the score to be recorded.
  3. The score will be based on the speed of the car. In case of a tie, a race will be held.

Good Luck!

Part 1 continued: Building the Car : Tips and Tricks

  • The first thing to do is choose the material to build the body of the car.  The body should be both light and sturdy, for this reason styrofoam makes a very good body.  It is also important to design a body that is long enough.  Short cars tend to spin out more often than longer ones.  A good car should be about 30 cm long.
  • The second thing to do is build and mount the wheels.  Wheels can be made out of about anything that is round, such as CDs, caps, and lids.  The hard part, however, is getting them mounted straight with little friction.  If the wheels are not mounted straight or are not free to spin smoothly, the car will not perform.
  • Once the wheels are mounted on the body it is time to put a balloon onto the car.  Having the balloon attached to a pen barrel so that the air comes out in a smooth manner helps.
  • If the car has a sturdy but light body, free moving wheels and a good power supply, you are well on your way to being a balloon racer champion.
  • Tips for attaching balloons to tubes:
    • Make sure tube or straw goes all the way into the balloon (past the neck part and into the body) – this ensures that the balloon won’t fold and stop up the tube
    • Wrap the balloon around the tube end so that it basically seals and you end up with the balloon tightly wrapped around the tube with a flap of balloon left over on one side. Carefully fold the flap around the tube, keeping the seal good, and tape the flap to the rest of the balloon
  • Also, making sure the axles are parallel is key

Part 2 (10 points)

Sketch a diagram of your car on a separate piece of paper. Include the following;

  1. overall length of car
  2. overall width of car
  3. diameter of wheels
  4. length of axle housing
  5. length of axle rods
  6. Force arrows of all forces acting on the moving car
  7. Force arrows must be labeled

 Part 3 (20 points)

Each group member will write a five paragraph typed paper, describing how they used the science and       Newton’s Law’s of Motion to complete their project.

  • First paragraph- Describe the problem you are trying to solve. What are the rules you need to follow to complete the project?
  • Second paragraph- Describe how you solved the problem. What types of problems did you run into?  What process did you go through to complete your car successfully?
  • Third paragraph- Describe what build methods worked best. Specifically, discuss the competition; what traits made the fastest car? What would you have done differently?
  • Fourth paragraph- Describe how Newton’s Law’s of motion were at work on the car while in motion and during construction/design of your car. (Friction, Momentum, Forces etc…)
  • Fifth paragraph- In conclusion, describe what you learned by doing this project. Discuss the best parts of the project and the most difficult moments. Also, what would you do differently next time?

What you must hand in:

  1. Sketch of your car as described in Part 2
  2. 5 Paragraph paper as described in Part 3
  3. Complete answers to questions in procedure section Part 4
  4. Balloon racer car “ready to race” on race day.  Part 1
  5. Cover for written material

Procedure (you can use these steps as a guide or try to do it your own way):

1. Cut the bend off two regular plastic straws.

  • These are called the axle housings.
  • The housing should be slightly shorter than the axle rod (step 2).
  • Measure the length of your axle housing and record your measurement in cm. ______________cmAxle rods:
  • Measure the length of your axle rods, record your measurements in cm. ____________cm
  • Insert the axle rods into each axle housings.
  • You may want to glue one wheel onto each axle rod, then place the axle housing over the axle rod and glue the other wheel onto the axle rod.
  • Center axle housings onto the popsicle stick.
  • Put one axle in front and one in the back.
  • Use the hot glue gun to fit these pieces into place.
  1. Try your car.
  • Put it on the ground.
  • Give it a push.
  • Does it roll, easily?
  • If not, check to make certain your axle rod is not rubbing on the inside of the axle housing.
  • If rubbing is a problem, go see T. Joyce
  • Use the third regular-sized straw and insert about 2 cm of the straw, near the bend, in the opening/neck of a balloon (22.5 cm or 9 inch).
  • Secure the balloon in place by looping a small rubber band several times around the neck of the balloon containing the straw.
  • Make sure the rubber band does not crush the straw.
  • Tape the straw to the car – leave enough straw to blow into the balloon and fill the balloon with air.
  • To move the balloon car, blow into the free end of the long straw until the balloon is the desired size.
  • Quickly squeeze the opening of the straw to keep the air from escaping from the balloon.
  • Position the car, balloon end in the front.
  • The car should begin to travel as soon as you remove your finger from the straw.
  • If your car moves sluggishly or not at all, it is because the axle is rubbing and you did not adhere to the requirements of Step 6.
  • Use a ruler to measure the:
  • Overall length of your car (cm): _________
  • Use the digital scale to measure the overall weight of your car (grams): _________
  • Did you fill-in all the blank spaces on the previous 10 steps?

   Test your car.

  • Inflate the balloon without breaking it.
  • Hold the nozzle shut until you are ready to race.
  • Release the nozzle and start the stopwatch.
  • Stop the watch when the balloon runs out of air.
  • Mark the spot on the floor where that occurred.
  • Record your results on the data table.

Test Your Car


Your time

in seconds

Distance traveled

in meters



Run #1

Run #2

Run #3

Competition racing with group members in the hallway





Who’s car traveled the farthest? ______________________________

Who’s car traveled the fastest in the first 3 meters? ________________

Who’s car exhibited the fastest overall speed? ________________

Part 4  (5 points)


1.Does the length, width and weight of the car make a difference in its performance?  Explain by providing evidence from your races.

2.The key word in this project is friction. Did friction play a role in your races? Explain by providing evidence from your races.

3.  Look-up the word momentum.  Was momentum a factor in your races? Explain your thinking and provide evidence from your data to support your opinion.

The Balloon Car Race!

Rubric: 60 points total!


The car: (up to 20 points)

  • 20 points- The car follows all rules and travels 3 m with fastest speed
  • 19 Points- The car follows all rules and travels 3 m in the 2nd fastest speed
  • 18 Points- The car follows all rules and travels 3 m in the 3rd fastest Speed
  • 17 Points- The car follows all rules and travels 3 m
  • 15 Points- The car follows all rules and travels only 2 m
  • 14 Points- The car does not meet regulations or does not travel 2 m

 The car sketch: (up to 10 points)

  • All details in part 2 are in the sketch and legible
    • -1 point for each missing item from part 2

 The 5 paragraph paper: (up to 20 points)

  • 5 Points: Complete Paragraphs (at least 4 sentences per paragraph): (-1 for each missing paragraph)
  • 5 Points for perfect grammar and spelling (-.25 points for each error up to -3 points)
  • 10 Points did the writer address all questions as described in part 3 (-1 point for each missing question)

 The questions: (5 Points)

  • (-1 for each incomplete answer)

 Cover: ( 5 Points)

  • Name, Date, Class Period, Picture, Packet stapled correctly (-1 for each missing item)