Science ideas

Here are some fun science ideas for you.

Practical Ideas: two ideas this week that both use toothpicks. One is very simple and the other needs more patience!

Make a Wooden Star

Equipment: 5 wooden cocktail sticks, plate, water.

How to: bend each stick into a ‘v’ shape without breaking them in two; place them in the centre of the plate with ‘v’ shaped points together to form a star; add a few drops to the middle of the star and see what happens.

What is happening? The wood fibres of the cocktail sticks absorb water and as they do, they expand.  This pushes the edges of each ‘v’ shape apart until it pushes against the stick next to it.

Taking it further: you could explore different numbers of cocktail sticks, amounts of water and types of liquid.

Make a Balancing Butterfly!

Equipment: stiff A5 card, coloured pencils/pens, scissors, tape, toothpick, 2 small balls of blu-tack that are the same size.

How to: fold card in half and draw half a butterfly from the folded edge; with the card folded, cut around the shape of the butterfly; open the card and colour the butterfly; on the back of the butterfly, stick the toothpick along the spine and then each blob of blu-tack at the top tip of each wing; turn your butterfly over and practice balancing it on your finger using the tip of the toothpick.

What is happening? The blu-tack on the wing tips are heavier than the butterfly itself, changing its centre of mass and allowing it to balance on the tip of the toothpick.

Taking it further: you could explore placing the blu-tack in different places on the butterfly to see if they can still make it balance.

*Check out this supporting video by fellow Robbie Taylor where you can also see how to make a climbing bug.

Online Links

Check out That Science Lady for resources to support you in returning to school.

Amazonas comics

Amazonas Comics celebrates the Amazon with entertaining stories, games and information pages. You can read and download for free on their website.

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