06 December 2010

An Illuminating Experiment

Research question: How will a 23 month old (specifically, Eamon Wolfe) feel about fireworks?
Importance of the research question: Eamon has never before seen fireworks. Fireworks are cool. We hope he likes them.

Hypothesis: If we take a 23 month old (Eamon Wolfe) to see the fireworks at Grand Illumination in Colonial Williamsburg, then he will enjoy them.

Independent (manipulated) variable: The fireworks at Grand Illumination in Colonial Williamsburg

Dependent (responding) variable: Whether he will like them

Possible confounding (extraneous) variables: The weather is expected to be very cold (lows in the upper 20s). We will therefore attempt to control for these variables by dressing Eamon very warmly. This leads into the bigger issue, however, of whether Eamon will put up with being dressed very warmly.

Materials: Diaper, socks (2 pair), pants, white long sleeve t-shirt, red flannel shirt, blue sweatshirt, "bubble" coat (see A Christmas Story), winter boots, mittens, hat, wool blanket, large stroller, Lion


1. Ensure long nap for child so he can stay up an hour past his bedtime (fireworks are from 6:15-6:45ish; takes about an hour to get home with traffic)

2. Dress child warmly. Attempt not to laugh as he tries to walk with his new winter boots, which are heavy and go up higher than he is used to, therefore causing him to walk like a miniature Frankenstein.

3. Leave house around 4:45 after prying Aaron away from the Cowboys-Colts game

4. Drive to Williamsburg, find a parking place, put on the rest of Eamon's accoutrements, including his hat (he left it on!), his mittens (he left those on, too!), and his bubble coat ("I can't put my arms down!" NOTE: Not an actual quote from Eamon; see A Christmas Story)

5. Allow Eamon to walk from Bruton Heights (the parking lot) into the historic area. Note that in order to navigate his boots in non-Frankenstein manner, he has compensated by picking up his feet really high, and therefore march-running. Again, try not to laugh.

6. When it gets darker, child will no longer want to walk by himself (note: he might try to spend the entire evening in the vending machines area because it is lit). Therefore, put in stroller.

7. Walk child up and down Duke of Gloucester Street to enjoy the burning cressets, fife and drum band, and general aura of merriness and good cheer

8. Be ready for fireworks at 6:15 by Gaol area. Drape Eamon in blanket, whether he wants it or not.

9. During the first firework, bite lip and stare anxiously at child for his reaction. Breathe a sigh of relief when, after said first firework, he signs and says, "More? More?"

10. Go back and forth between watching the fireworks and watching the look in the child's eyes as he enjoys fireworks for the first time.

11. At the end of the fireworks, sit in traffic for half an hour before making it out of the parking lot. Go home, put exhausted child to bed. Declare it all a Victory.

Results/Observation/Conclusion (poor methodology, but I am lazy): Child appeared to enjoy fireworks, even if he did watch them all over the head of his Lion. Decide to go to Grand Illumination every year, in manner of new Family Tradition.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Your pictures are SO cute! I wish we had met Baby Wolfe in Yorktown last weekend. Hopefully we will see you soon. I'm totally jealous of people with blogs- it is a great way to keep up with others! -Amanda E.