Saturday, September 17, 2011

Science Experiments and Disappointments

I have these pictures which I took while we've been studying electricity this week, but didn't really know what to do with them.  So I thought I would write a little and include them in a post.

First we started off with static electricity.  We rubbed balloons with wool and stuck them to hair, clothes, wall, etc.  Then we took another balloon and rubbed it with other cloth to see what would happen.  Nothing!  Then one child held each balloon to see what they would do and they pulled towards each other.  So that is our first picture.

Balloons attracted to each other

Another day we tried to see what would happen by rubbing a plastic comb with the wool and holding it near a stream of water.  We didn't get it to do anything.  I figure the fact that we were in the middle of a rain shower helped this to not work out. 

Wrapping the bolt with copper wire

Next it was on to trying to build a battery.  We stacked 12 pennies and 12 washers together with tissue saturated with salt and vinegar.  Then we took copper wire and wrapped it around a bolt and held it tightly against the coin and washer stack and tried to pick up some paper clips.  This is didn't work out.  The end of the bolt may have had a little bit of a charge, but not enough to pick up the paper clips.  How disappointing.  This was on the same day as the failed comb/water experiment, but I'm not sure if the humidity had anything to do with it.

Trying to pick up paper clips
I do know that both of the children were extremely disappointed that they weren't able to achieve positive results with these experiments.  I told them we can try them again when it isn't raining, but sometimes they just aren't that patient.

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