Calling all science mad kids! We've got four easy and awesome science experiments for you and your mini scientists to master. Put your safety goggles on and unleash your inner Einstein. From static electricity to light refraction - these experiments are both educational and super cool. And if you're not all science-d out by the end, head to the Science Museum to watch two brilliant screenings of two magnificent 3D science films - A Beautiful Planet 3D and Hubble 3D.
1. Balloon Hovercraft
Explore how air is being pushed downward, creating a cushion for things above it to float on.
How to do it:
1) Take your CD and water bottle cap.
2) Glue the cap over the hole in the CD and place it on a smooth surface like a kitchen table.
3) Inflate your balloon making sure the water bottle cap is closed.
4) Place the opening of the balloon over the top of the cap.
5) Ready for your homemade hovercraft?
Carefully open the water cap. Air being forced out of the balloon through the open cap will create a cushion of air beneath the CD lifting it up off the surface. You can then push it around the table.
2. Jumping Frogs
If you've ever had a static shock from a shopping trolley or an escalator, or heard a crackle when you take off a jumper, then you'll have some idea how this experiment might work.
Static electricity is what makes your hair stand on end when you rub a balloon on it as the atoms inside your hair lose their electrons.
How to do it:
1) Draw frog pictures on the paper and then carefully cut them out.
2) Blow up the balloon.
3) Rub the balloon on your jumper until it's charged with static.
4) Hold the balloon over the frogs and watch them jump onto it and attach themselves!
How long will they hold on for ? You can pick a frog and the one that is the last to leap off is the winner.
3. The Magical Leak Proof Bag
This experiment doubles as a child's magic trick and it's devilishly simple to do.
How to do it :
1) Half fill the bag with water.
2) Hold the bag dramatically before your face. Look deadly serious.
3) Then take out the sharpened pencils and skewer the bag.
4) Pause a little before each one is inserted for dramatic tension and astound your audience as no water leaks from the bag!
The bag forms a temporary seal around the pencils preventing any water from leaking.You can try different pencil thicknesses, numbers and degrees of sharpness to see if the experiment still works. This introduces children to trial and error and comparison.
4. Light Refraction Experiment
This experiment shows how science can a bit baffling while introducing children to light refraction. Kids and adults alike will be scratching their heads trying to work out how this particular trick of light happened.
What you'll need: A piece of paper, a marker pen, glass, water
How to do it:
1) Take the sheet of paper and draw two large arrows, one at the top of the paper, the other at the bottom. Make them both point in the same direction.
2) Fill a glass with water.
3) Slowly lower the piece of paper behind the water.
4) Look through the glass of water and see what happens.
Plot Spoiler : The arrow has changed direction !
The light has travelled from the image, through the air, then through the glass into the water and finally into the air again before it reaches our eyes. On the way the light has bent one way then another giving the appearance of having flipped directions.
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Kidadl provides inspiration for everything from family days out to online classes, arts, crafts and science experiments. We recognise that not all activities and ideas are appropriate and suitable for all children and families or in all circumstances. Our recommended activities are based on age but these are a guide. We recommend that these ideas are used as inspiration, that ideas are undertaken with appropriate adult supervision, and that each adult uses their own discretion and knowledge of their children to consider the safety and suitability.
Kidadl cannot accept liability for the execution of these ideas, and parental supervision is advised at all times, as safety is paramount. Anyone using the information provided by Kidadl does so at their own risk and we can not accept liability if things go wrong.
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