Welcome to the Wonder Zoo

Welcome to the Wonder Zoo

Welcome to the area of Camp where things are a bit on the wild side! The zoo is an awesome place to learn about animals that live all over the globe.

You’re sure to have a roaring good time WONDERing about zoology, the study of animals. On land or in the water, zoologists go where animals go, studying the physical characteristics and behaviors of all sorts of critters, creatures, and creepy crawlies!

Why do zebras have stripes? How hungry are hippos? Discover the answers to these Wonders and learn much more at the Wonder Zoo!

Maker Activity

This activity has us very egg-cited to learn about the principles of osmosis. Why does water sometimes flow in, and other times flow out?

What you'll need

  • Several raw eggs
  • Vinegar
  • Corn syrup
  • Water
  • Food Coloring

Hands On!

1

Place raw eggs (with shells on) in a container so they are not touching. Add enough vinegar to cover the eggs. Notice the bubbles form on the eggs. Cover the container, put in the refrigerator, and let the eggs sit in the vinegar for 24 hours.

2

Use a big spoon to scoop eggs out of the vinegar. Be careful—since the eggshell has been dissolving, the egg membrane may be the only thing holding the egg together. The membrane is not as durable as the shell. If any of the membranes have broken, letting egg ooze out, throw those eggs away.

3

Put one of your shell-less eggs into a container and add enough corn syrup to cover the egg. Put another egg in a small container and add enough water to cover the egg. Put a third egg in a container, add enough water to cover the egg, and add food coloring. Put all three eggs into the refrigerator for 24 hours. After 24 hours, take a look at your eggs.

Wonderuption: Describe what the eggs look like? How could you get the shriveled up egg to be plump and firm?

Why does that happen?

The egg that was in the water is plump and firm. The egg that was in the corn syrup is shriveled and flabby.

After you dissolve the eggshell, the egg is surround by a membrane (actually two). This membrane is selectively permeable—which means it lets some molecules move through it and blocks other molecules.

Water moves through the membrane easily. Bigger molecules—like the sugar molecules in the corn syrup don’t pass through the membrane.

After soaking in vinegar you might have noticed that the egg increases a little in size. This is because the water in the vinegar can enter the egg through the membrane, moving from the higher water concentration in vinegar to the lower concentration in the egg.

If you now put the egg in water, it will grow in size a lot more due to the much larger water concentration gradient across the membrane. If you add food coloring to the water you can see the process of osmosis in action as the colored water passes into the egg.

If instead you place the vinegar soaked egg in corn syrup you will see the opposite. There is a much higher water concentration in the egg than in the syrup so water will pass in the opposite direction. This means that the egg will shrink in size.

Zoology

Recommended Books

Preschool - Age 8

The Watcher: Jane Goodall's Life with the Chimps by Jeanette Winter

Life in the Boreal Forest by Brenda Z. Guiberson, Paintings by Gennady Spirin

Sisters and Brothers: Sibling Relationships in the Animal World by Robin Page, illustrated by Steve Jenkins

Ages 9 - 13

Kakapo Rescue: Saving the World's Strangest Parrot by Sy Montgomery, photographs by Nic Bishop

The Frog Scientist by Pamela S. Turner, Illustrated by Andy Comins

ER Vets: Life in an Animal Emergency Room by Donna Jackson

Quest for the Tree Kangaroo: An Expedition to the Cloud Forest of New Guinea by Sy Montgomery, Photos by Nic Bishop

The Race to Save the Lord God Bird by Phillip Hoose

Ages 14 and up

Gorillas in the Mist by Dr. Dian Fossey

All Creatures Great and Small by James Herriotx