The Monte Vista Science Room (Room 16) is open every morning before school from 8:00 to 8:30 a.m., and at lunch recess on Wednesdays and Fridays.  Drop by to visit our reptiles, fish, amphibians, insects and spiders.  Watch this site and the case by the MV multipurpose room for special activities and visitors. 

Top 25 Camouflaged Animals (for Third Graders)

posted Apr 30, 2013, 1:29 PM by Unknown user   [ updated Apr 30, 2013, 1:42 PM ]

Our chicken eggs went into the incubator Friday, April 5th

posted Apr 10, 2013, 9:53 PM by Unknown user   [ updated Apr 10, 2013, 9:54 PM ]

This morning we candled a few of the eggs and observed blood vessels that looked like day 4 in the model above.  We will candle the eggs again next week.  Thank you to Katherine at Island Seed and Feed in Goleta for giving us a dozen eggs from her lovely chicken ladies.

One of my favorite scientists and his slime mold video

posted Apr 3, 2013, 2:50 PM by Unknown user   [ updated Apr 3, 2013, 2:56 PM ]

YouTube Video

Debris Flow Video for Sixth Graders

posted Mar 12, 2013, 6:35 AM by Unknown user   [ updated Mar 12, 2013, 6:36 AM ]

Science Night is Coming!

posted Jan 15, 2013, 2:28 PM by Unknown user

Monte Vista PTA is proud to present:





5:30 to 7:30 p.m.




"Fearless Felix" Lands Safely After Jumping From Edge of Space

posted Oct 14, 2012, 11:48 AM by Unknown user   [ updated Oct 14, 2012, 11:55 AM ]

The high altitude balloon twists in the wind just seconds before the launch was aborted on Tuesday.

                                                                                                                                                Baumgartner's Balloon Before Launch.

Baumgartner sits in his capsule before the scheduled final manned flight of Red Bull Stratos in Roswell on Tuesday, October 9.

                                                                                                                                                            Baumgartner in his capsule.

Baumgartner stands in the desert after completing the second manned test flight for Red Bull Stratos in Roswell, New Mexico, on July 25.

                                                                                                                Baumgartner standing in desert after second manned test flight in July.

A crew member launches a weather balloon into the stratosphere on Thursday, October 4.

                                                                                                                            A crew member launches a weather balloon in early October.

Baumgartner steps out from the capsule during the second manned test flight on July 25.

                                                                                                                     Baumgartner steps out of the capsule during the second manned test flight in July.

Baumgartner leaves his capsule after the flight was aborted on Tuesday.

                                                                                                    Baumgartner steps out of his capsule after the scheduled flight last week was delayed due to weather.

Skydiver lands safely after historic jump from edge of space

By Josh Levs. Dugald McConnell, and Brian Todd, CNN
updated 2:35 PM EDT, Sun October 14, 2012

  • NEW: It was the highest, but not the longest lasting, free fall
  • NEW: His estimated speed was 729 mph
  • He had only a space suit, helmet and chute for the 128,000-foot jump
  • Risks included low temperatures, thin atmosphere and a possible loss of consciousness

(CNN) -- Skydiver Felix Baumgartner landed safely on the ground Sunday after a record-shattering jump from the edge of space.

"He made it -- tears of joy from Mission Control," the team said in a live feed.

Baumgartner left the capsule attached to a huge helium balloon at 128,000 feet -- 24 miles up -- higher than anyone before him.

After an initial free fall, he opened his parachute and glided down to the ground, where he smiling and hugging members of his team.

It may not have been the longest-lasting free fall. Mission Control said during the jump that Baumgartner did not "break the record for time elapsed" before pulling the parachute.

His highest estimated speed on the way down was 729 mph.

"Guardian angels will take care of you," said Mission Control just before he jumped.

"The whole world is watching now," Baumgartner said, before giving a salute and jumping.

Applause broke out in Mission Control when he touched down, and Baumgartner fell to his knees with his fists raised.

With nothing but a space suit, helmet and parachute, Baumgartner hoped to be the first person to break the sound barrier without the protection of a vehicle.

Even before jumping, he set a record for floating higher in a balloon -- about 24 miles -- than anyone else before.

At that height, more than three times the cruising altitude of an average airliner, the thin air provides so little resistance that after just 40 seconds, he was expected to be free-falling faster than 690 miles per hour.

The Austrian daredevil, dubbed "Fearless Felix," was prepared, having "done the hard work," his coach Andy Walshe told reporters last week.

Baumgartner ascended steadily in a capsule hanging from a helium balloon. Then he opened the hatch, climbed out, jumped off the step with a bunny hop, and formed a crouched "delta" position to maximize his acceleration.

The plan: to fall most of the way in less than five minutes, then deploy a parachute for the final 5,000 feet to earth.

The attempt has serious risks. He and his team have practiced how he can avoid getting trapped in a dangerous "horizontal spin." His life will also depend on the integrity of his pressure suit, since temperatures could hit 70 degrees below zero Fahrenheit or lower, and the atmosphere will be so thin that his blood would vaporize if he were unprotected.

If he loses consciousness during the five-minute plunge, he will survive only if his parachute deploys automatically.

Another unknown: the effects on the body of breaking the sound barrier. While reaching such speeds can cause stress on an aircraft, planners for this jump believe there will be little effect on Baumgartner because he will be at an altitude at which there is so little air that shock waves are barely transmitted.

Opinion: The space adventure you can't miss

After a weather delay of several hours on Sunday morning, the balloon rose from its launch site at 11:30 a.m. ET, with Baumgartner in a capsule hanging beneath it.

He almost made an attempt Tuesday from his launch site in Roswell, New Mexico. But as he was waiting in his capsule for the giant helium balloon to finish inflating, a gust of wind twisted the balloon like a spinnaker, and ruined it.

Baumgartner is an Austrian helicopter pilot and former soldier who has parachuted from such landmarks as the Petronas Towers in Malaysia and the Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio de Janeiro.

He has been preparing for his latest feat for five years -- both physically and mentally.

"You have to remember all the procedures," he said in an interview during testing for the jump. "You know you're in a really hostile environment. And you cannot think about anything else. You have to be focused. Otherwise, you're gonna die."

The balloon being used is light and translucent. The material is only .0008 of an inch thick, one-tenth as thick as a sandwich bag, and it will change shape and size as it rises.

After Tuesday's launch was scrubbed, Baumgartner tweeted, "We've made it so far, there's no way turning back."

The 43-year-old former military parachutist is backed up by the Red Bull Stratos team, which includes a former NASA crew surgeon, record-breaking aviators, and designers of innovative aircraft.

Skydiver aims for supersonic jump from the edge of space

Baumgartner has previously parachuted from such landmarks as the Petronas Towers in Malaysia and the Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio de Janeiro.

He has been preparing for his latest feat for five years -- both physically and mentally.

"You have to remember all the procedures," he said in an interview during testing for the jump. "You know you're in a really hostile environment. And you cannot think about anything else. You have to be focused. Otherwise, you're gonna die."

The balloon being used is light and translucent. The material is only .0008 of an inch thick, one-tenth as thick as a sandwich bag, and it will change shape and size as it rises.

The pressurized helmet and suit, which restrict Baumgartner's mobility and together weigh 100 pounds, have been equipped with sensors and recorders to measure everything from his speed to his heart rate. Cameras on the ground and on the capsule are transmitting live images of his attempt at www.youtube.com/user/redbull.

The record for such a jump is currently held by Col. Joe Kittinger, who in 1960 jumped from 102,800 feet as part of a U.S. Air Force mission. More than 50 years later, Kittinger is a consultant on Baumgartner's effort, and will be the one from mission control who speaks to Baumgartner over the headset throughout the attempt.

After a test jump earlier this year, when the two lost communication with each other, Baumgartner told CNN he realized how much he relies on Kittinger as a mentor.

"Immediately you can feel how lonely you feel," Baumgartner said. "I wanted to hear the voice because I am so used to this. Every time we have been practicing on the ground, Joe was talking to me. So I am used to the voice, and [it] makes me feel safe."

Kittinger has also been giving Baumgartner advice on what to expect during his attempt. For example, he said, when you're at an altitude so high that you see the curvature of the earth, "there's no way you can tell how fast you're going, because there's no visual cues."

He also learned the importance of patience back when he was making jumps, Kittinger told reporters last week.

"On one occasion, I waited 30 days to launch a stratospheric balloon," he said.

Giant Eyeball Washes Up on Florida Beach

posted Oct 13, 2012, 5:39 PM by Unknown user   [ updated Oct 13, 2012, 9:31 PM ]

Picture of giant eyeball that washed up on Florida beach

Picture of giant eyeball

Picture of giant eye
Click here to see the National Geographic article

To whom do you think this eye belonged?

Liquefaction Demonstration

posted Oct 8, 2012, 8:57 PM by Unknown user   [ updated Oct 8, 2012, 8:59 PM ]

This video demonstrates liquefaction of sandy earth during an earthquake for sixth grade scientists in Mrs. Spracher's class.

New Species Discovered in Malaysia

posted Oct 5, 2012, 9:57 AM by Unknown user

Check out these amazing photos of new species discovered in Malaysia-- can see the two snake heads on the butterfly's wings?


Space Shuttle Endeavour Coming to Southern California

posted Sep 13, 2012, 3:22 PM by Unknown user

Space shuttle Endeavour, on way to L.A., will do flyover


Sixth-graders visiting the Capitol watch the final voyage of the space shuttle Discovery as it soars above Washington en route to its new home at the National Air and Space Museum annex in northern Virginia. A similar spectacle is expected for Endeavor on its way to Los Angeles. (J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press / April 17, 2012)

Related photos »

By Richard Simon

September 7, 2012, 9:00 a.m.

WASHINGTON -- Sorry, Houston, you didn’t get a space shuttle, but at least you’ll get a glimpse of the last one to fly -- on its way to L.A.

NASA’s plans for delivering the retired shuttle Endeavour to its permanent home in California call for the orbiter to fly on the back of a Boeing 747 over parts of Florida, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas and New Mexico, as well as landmarks in San Francisco and Sacramento, before landing at Los Angeles International Airport on Sept. 20. 

The low-level flyovers are likely to draw big crowds -- pulling kids out of school and workers out of offices, not to mention stopping traffic -- as did NASA’s delivery of the shuttle Discovery to the Smithsonian earlier this year in Washington.

But the Endeavour flyover is likely to bring mixed emotions in Houston. Home of NASA's Mission Control, the self-described Space City was bitterly disappointed when it lost a fierce competition for one of the prized space artifacts, even more so by the fact that one of the spots chosen to get a shuttle was New York City,which landed the test craft Enterprise.

"One Giant Snub for Houston," read the headline in the Houston Chronicle after the space agency administrator announced his selections last year. (Space Center Houston ended up getting a full-size replica of a shuttle that was on display at Kennedy Space Center in Florida.)

But Jack Moore of Space Center Houston said, "We’re absolutely excited about getting the opportunity to see it one last time. Anytime the shuttle comes anywhere near Houston, it’s a big deal.’’

Endeavour is due to arrive at the California Science Center on Oct. 13, after a splashy celebration befitting the spectacle of its 12-mile journey through the city streets from LAX to Exposition Park. It will go on public display Oct. 30.

The shuttles Discovery and Enterprise are drawing crowds at the National Air and Space Museum annex in northern Virginia and at New York’s Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum, respectively. The shuttle Atlantis will be towed a short distance from Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral, Fla., to the visitor complex there in November and put on public display in July.  

The plane carrying the shuttle will fly over a number of places with ties to the shuttle program. 

Among the sites is NASA’s White Sands Test Facility in Las Cruces, N.M. "It’s a big deal for the employees here because the employees here supported the shuttle program from inception to retirement," said the facilty's public affairs officer, Robert M. Cort.

Endeavour will leave Kennedy Space Center at sunrise Sept. 17, flying over Florida’s Space Coast and then over NASA’s Stennis Space Center near Bay St. Louis, Miss., and its Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans. It will fly over Houston, Clear Lake and Galveston in Texas before landing at Ellington Field near NASA’s Johnson Space Center and stay there through Sept. 18, the space agency announced.

On Sept. 19 the shuttle will head to Biggs Army Airfield in El Paso for refueling and then conduct low-level flyovers of White Sands Test Facility near Las Cruces, N.M., before landing about midday at NASA’s Dryden Flight Research Center at Edwards Air Force Base in the Mojave Desert, where it sometimes landed on its own after space missions.

On the morning of Sept. 20, the plane will conduct low-level flyovers of NASA’s Ames Research Center at Moffet Field, Calif., and yet to be specified landmarks in San Francisco, Sacramento and perhaps other California cities before a low-level flyover of Los Angeles. The plane is expected to land at Los Angeles International Airport at about 11 a.m. Pacific time.

The shuttle will begin its journey from LAX to the California Science Center on Oct. 12.

NASA cautioned that plans could change depending on weather.

In Washington, Discovery flew over the monuments. In New York, Enterprise soared over the Statue of Liberty.

Still to be announced is which landmarks Endeavour will fly over.

The Hollywood sign? The Golden Gate Bridge?

The Four-Level Interchange?

Stay tuned.

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