Top Toys for Future Engineers and Scientists – Marble Run Toys

Marble Run Toys – I teach middle school kids programming, coding and robotics and I’m often asked what a great Christmas present would be for a smart kid.  Got a curious kid who likes physical and exploring science through toys? Check out these great marble run games for all ages.  Marble run toys encourage imagination and creativity while teaching the laws of physics intuitively.  Here are some of the top toys featuring marble runs for budding scientists and engineers.

Space Rails – for older kids

  • Marble roller coaster track with three screw conveyor elevators to carry SpaceRail marble to the top
  • Includes multiple different tracks for the marbles to travel, multiple consecutive loops, seesaw drops, drop-through steps, a weighted lever, two vertical corkscrews, and multiple curves, spirals and drops.
  • Estimated build time: 25-35 hours
  • Contains: 70,000 mm track line, Two steel .5 in. marbles, Three Screw Conveyor Elevators, Arms and holders to place SpaceRail track, Connecting freestanding bases to fit entire marble run, and English instruction manual
  • Recommended for ages 15 and up

Hape Quadrilla Wooden Marble Run Construction – Vertigo – Quality Time Playing Together Wooden Safe Play – Smart Play for Smart Families

  • Praised by the Wall Street Journal as one of the top toys to teach kids code and STEM principles
  • German Engineering Design Inspired by Da Vinci circles with Endless Creative Building Possibilites for Spatial Thinking Minds
  • Each of the Seven Different Color Blocks has a different Function – Fun practice for logical and engineering thinking
  • “Spiel Gut” (Good Toy) Award and Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award Winner
  • Thousands of Happy Playing Hours – An Heirloom Toy Worth of Every Penny

Fat Brain Toys 168 pc Bamboo Builder Marble Run

  • Strong, sturdy marble run sets made of bamboo and other sustainable materials; open-ended construction creativity; includes 30 marbles, instruction book, rope marble catchers
  • Endless building possibilities; Follow instructions to get started; Combine with other Bamboo Builder Marble Runs to create the ultimate marble-run metropolis
  • Perfect for ages 4 to 10; Features hand-crafted, carbonized tracks, colorful bamboo cylinders, sustainable wood powder spirals – Safe for kids, friendly to the environment; BPA-Free
  • Creative construction hones fine motor skills, visual spatial skills, early engineering skills; Inspires creativity, critical thinking, three-dimensional thinking; Teaches problem-solving and innovation
  • Easy-to-open packaging doubles as storage box; made in China

Award Winning Educational Chaos Tower DIY Building Kit With Expansion Kit

  • AWARD WINNING FUN AND MORE: The Rube Goldberg Styled Chaos Tower has been awarded by Parent’s Choice, Teacher’s Choice and voted Toy-of-the-Year. The expansion kit is combined with this sweet deal.
  • RUN, RUN, RUN: A bigger, better Chaos Tower includes over 600 pieces of endless fun and possibilities of new chaotic designs with chutes, slides, catch baskets, trampolines, marbles, spirals, a blue vortex bell and more.
  • DON’T LOSE YOUR MARBLES: Whether timing the quickest run or just enjoying your creation, keep an eye on your marbles. You don’t want to miss a second of this perpetual action.
  • BACK TO BASICS: The Tower does not include anything technical, an AC adaptor is included for this to be plugged in, or includes an area for batteries to make portable and show everyone this pandemonium. (Batteries not included)
  • INFINITE CHAOS FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY: Family time just got more exciting with all the continuous creations everyone can take part in. The expansion kit will allow even more fun for all wanting to experience the exciting Chaos Tower.

Full Steam Ahead – Riding the Steam Train in Essex

Full Steam Through the Valley

Sometimes when you’ve been taking photographs as long as I have, you look back at an image and say, did I really take that? And the details come flooding back. The scouting for a great location, studying the schedule, pouring over the maps, the dropping of your lens in a parking lot in your haste to get to the right spot in time, the weather with its perfect mix of clouds, the walking through tick infested meadows, the strange looks from workers are you skirt behind their warehouse etc.

All this in the service of a photograph that may or may not turn out to be a keeper. But when all of the planning and execution come to together for that perfect shot, all the world seems to be in-sync with your mission.

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The Essex Steam Train of the Valley Railroad chugs through the area known as the Meadow. Fine art photography by Edward M. Fielding – www.edwardfielding.com

I spent a good part of my summer in the Connecticut River Valley and often photographed the Essex Steam Train. The train leaves daily for tourist excursions from Essex Connecticut up along the Connecticut river through Deep River and ends across the swing bridge from the Goodspeed Opera House in East Haddam.

The Valley Railroad is a heritage railroad based in Connecticut on tracks of the Connecticut Valley Railroad which was founded in 1868. It operates the Essex Steam Train and the Essex Clipper Dinner Train. The Valley Railroad Company operates the Essex Steam Train & Riverboat. This excursion starts with a 12-mile ride aboard the historic Essex Steam Train from the Essex Station with scenic views of the Connecticut River up to Chester. The train reverses direction back to the Deep River Station/Landing. Passengers who have purchased the riverboat tickets can board the Becky Thatcher at this station. The riverboat brings people on a 1-hour, 15-minute trip up the Connecticut River to the East Haddam Swing Bridge and then back to Deep River Landing. The train then picks up passengers to bring them back to Essex Depot. The whole trip takes about 2 hours 30 minutes.

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Some of the old equipment collected by the Essex Railroad for possible future restoration.

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Beautiful old steam engines kept in top shape by the crew at the Essex railroad.

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Nothing beats the sights, sounds and smells of a working steam locomotive.

75 Amazing Train Photographs

75 Amazing Train Photographs

75 Amazing Train Photographs

Over 75 modern and vintage train, railroad and railway photographs are available as prints from my portfolio at: http://edward-fielding.pixels.com/collections/trains

A railfan, rail buff or train buff (American English), railway enthusiast or railway buff (Australian/British English), trainspotter or anorak (British English), or foamer (pejorative for American railroaders), is a person interested in a recreational capacity in rail transport.] Railfans of many ages can be found worldwide. Railfans often combine their interest with other hobbies, especially photography and videography, radio scanning, model railroading, studying railroad history and participating in train station and rolling stock preservation efforts. Magazines dedicated to railfanning include Trains and Railfan & Railroad.

Morant's Curve Bow Valley Banff National Park Canada
Morant’s Curve Bow Valley Banff National Park Canada

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Photography Prints

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Photography Prints

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Train photography by Edward M. Fielding
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www.edwardfielding.com
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A steam locomotive is a railway locomotive that produces its power through a steam engine. These locomotives are fueled by burning some combustible material, usually coal, wood or oil, to produce steam in a boiler, which drives the steam engine. Both fuel and water supplies are carried with the locomotive, either on the locomotive itself or in wagons pulled behind
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Edward Fielding is a self-taught photographer/artist who is currently represented by several leading stock agencies with both royalty free and rights managed work.

Fielding’s work as appeared in featured in numerous magazines, greeting cards, advertising, book covers and media companies. His award winning fine art photos have been widely shown and juried into fine art shows.

www.edwardfielding.com

Look for Edward M. Fielding’s book “the Quotable Westie” on Amazon.

Smoke or Fog Machine Photography Studio Fun

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Using a Fog Machine to create atmospheric effects

After cleaning out the garage recently I came across a fog machine that I had stored way back among the Halloween party decorations.

I haven’t used it in year and also tossed it in the tag sale pile but then it hit me, why not use it in my photography studio for some atmospheric, book cover images?

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So I’ve been experimenting recently. The smoke machine or fog machine I have uses “fog juice” and a heating element to create a smoky fog that lifts into the air. Unlike dry ice which creates vapor that drops to the ground.

This fog machine is good for a small production or party use. Here are some of the answers to questions I had before I bought the machine. Hope this will help you:
1. The size of the machine is 8.5″ x 6″ x 6″
2. There is a bottle in the back where you pour the fog juice in
3. On the right side, there is a slot, so you can see the level of the liquid
4. On the left side, on top is the plug in for the remote control; below that is the fuse; and on the bottom is the power cable.
5. The power cable is 6′ long
6. The remote control has a 10′ long cable. On the remote control, there is a light on top with an on/off switch on the bottom.
7. According to the specs, the container in the fog machine can hold 1 pint of juice.
8. To create fog, fill the tank with juice, plug in the machine, in about 4 minutes the light on the remote control will light up, signaling the machine is hot enough to use. Press and hold the spring loaded on/off switch will release fog from the nozzle.
9. When the juice is heated up, you can release 40 seconds of fog before it need to reheat the element again, which takes about 3 minutes.
10. I have filled half the tank with juice, it lasted me for a good hour of use.

 

Get the best fog juice for your machine.  Some fog juice is designed to dissipate quickly to fill a stage area with clouds so lights and lasers can be seen better.  Other formula’s of fog juice are designed to say on the ground for spooky graveyard like effects.  These effects are typically better with more expensive fog machines that include a chilling element (ice bin) to create cold air to keep the fog low on the ground.

Keep in mind that when photographing fog or smoke say from a extinguished candle, incense burner or even cigar smoke or vapor from an e-cigarette, the lighting makes a big difference.

Flash strobes will freeze the smoke or fog while a long exposure will even it out.The following images were created with smoke from a incense and studio strobe lights.

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The smoke and steam of this image was captured separately and then added in Photoshop.
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The steamy, foggy atmosphere in this steam train images was a combination of cloud and fog images.
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John Molson Steam Train Locomotive

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John Molson Locomotive at Expo Rail Montreal, Canada.
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Train photography by Edward M. Fielding
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About this steam train:

Built in 1970, the “John Molson” is a replica of a late 1840’s locomotive. The original was built in 1849 by Kinmonds, Hutton, and Steel of Dundee, Scotland, and ran on the Champlain and St Lawrence Railroad. This live steam locomotive occasionally runs at the museum, back and forth along a track.It can be found at Canadian Railway Museum.
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Edward Fielding is a self-taught photographer/artist who is currently represented by several leading stock agencies with both royalty free and rights managed work.

Fielding’s work as appeared in featured in numerous magazines, greeting cards, advertising, book covers and media companies. His award winning fine art photos have been widely shown and juried into fine art shows.

www.edwardfielding.com

Look for Edward M. Fielding’s book “the Quotable Westie” on Amazon.



Housed at the Canadian Railroad Museum – an truly great museum outside of Montreal.train art for salerailroad art for salesteam train art for sale

Limited Time Promotion on Steam Train Dream

Steam Train Dream Limited Time Promotion

Steam Train Dream Canvas Print

by Edward Fielding

Purchase a 20.00″ x 24.00″ stretched canvas print of Edward Fielding’s Steam Train Dream for the promotional price of:

$100

10 available to collectors.  Expires in Five Days.

Locomotive Photograph
Special offer on a large canvas print of Steam Train Dream by Edward M. Fielding

http://fineartamerica.com/images-stretched-canvas/mirror/20.00/24.00/break/images-medium-5/steam-train-dream-edward-fielding.jpg

Stretched Canvas Prints

Bring your artwork to life with the texture and depth of a stretched canvas print.   Your image gets printed on a premium glossy canvas and then stretched on a wooden frame of 1.5″ x 1.5″ stretcher bars.   All stretched canvases ship within one business day and arrive “ready to hang” with pre-attached hanging wire, mounting hooks, and nails.

Fine Art America is one of the largest, most-respected giclee printing companies in the world with over 40 years of experience producing museum-quality prints.   All of our prints are produced on state-of-the-art, professional-grade Epson printers.   We use acid-free papers and canvases with archival inks to guarantee that your prints last a lifetime without fading or loss of color.

 

Limited Time Promotion

Limited time promotion on

Casey Jones and the Cannonball Express Canvas Print

by Edward Fielding

Purchase a 20.00″ x 16.00″ stretched canvas print of Edward Fielding’s Casey Jones and the Cannonball Express for the promotional price of:

$99

http://pixels.com/weeklypromotion.html?promotionid=175965

Stretched Canvas Prints

Bring your artwork to life with the texture and depth of a stretched canvas print.   Your image gets printed on a premium glossy canvas and then stretched on a wooden frame of 1.5″ x 1.5″ stretcher bars.   All stretched canvases ship within one business day and arrive “ready to hang” with pre-attached hanging wire, mounting hooks, and nails.

Fine Art America is one of the largest, most-respected giclee printing companies in the world with over 40 years of experience producing museum-quality prints.   All of our prints are produced on state-of-the-art, professional-grade Epson printers.   We use acid-free papers and canvases with archival inks to guarantee that your prints last a lifetime without fading or loss of color.

Photography Prints