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John Clifford Primary & Nursery School ‘Be your best. Celebrate success. Together we will be successful.’

Amazing Science Experiments!!!

Welcome to my page of science experiments.
 
I'll upload one experiment per week for you to have a go at home. Let me know how your experiments work out on the class blog. The experiments are for you to have fun and to see how you can make household items react in a way you wouldn't expect! Remember, for your science experiments to be safe, always get a grown up's permission and their help. HAVE FUN!
 
Mr Watkinson

 

 

WC 13.7.20

Laminar Flow!

 

Make flowing water look like it’s standing still or frozen.

 

Take a look at this experiment in action by clicking this link: 

https://john-clifford-school.primarysite.media/media/laminar-flow

 

You need:

  • Water
  • A balloon
  • Duct tape or scotch tape.
  • A bowl
  • A needle or pin.

 

Step 1

Fill your balloon with water by putting the end over a tap and running the water gently. You’ll need to hold the end over the tap and support the bottom as it fills. Fill it to about half the balloons capacity and then tie a knot at the end of the balloon.

 

 

 

Step 2

Sit the balloon in the bowl and pat the it dry with a towel so the tape sticks easily. Now make a hashtag shape with four pieces of tape. The gap in the middle of the hashtag needs to be about 1.50cm.

 

 

 

Step 3

Take the balloon and bowl outside where you don’t mind the floor getting wet. Prick the gap in the middle of the hashtag with the needle or pin to create a small hole. Water should start to flow out evenly and if all goes well appears frozen.

 

 

 

 

Tips

  • Fill a a couple of balloons in case the experiment doesn’t go so well on your first try, it certainly didn’t for me (see pictures below).
  • If the flow of water is wobbly the hole could be too small, try pricking it again or move on to another water filled balloon.
  • Make sure the tape is securely stuck to the balloon.
  • Keep trying until it works!

 

     

 

 

 

What is the science?

 

Balloons have soft edges. When you prick a balloon, the opening is typically even. When you stabilise the opening with the tape, the water can flow out gently without disruption. This makes the water particles flow evenly and gently past one another, creating the illusion of frozen water. In fluid dynamics this is called the laminar flow.

 

 

More experiments

  • Does the size of the hole make a difference? Can it be bigger?
  • Does the size of the balloon affect the experiment?
  • Does the temperature of the water have an impact?

 

 

 

 

 

WC 6.7.20

Lava Lamp!

 

Make your own Lava Lamp. I’ve seen a few of you already have done this experiment and you have inspired me to give it a go. It’s definitely worth a try if you haven’t done it yet.

 

You need:

 

  • An empty clear bottle or tumbler glass (I used a clear milk bottle)
  • Water
  • Vegetable oil
  • Food colouring
  • A fizzing tablet, I used a vitamin C tablet (remember to ask an adult for help and to supervise with this).

 

Step 1

Fill your glass or bottle ¾ of the way up with cold water.

 

 

  

 

Step 2

Carefully pour in the vegetable oil, I used a small funnel to do this. Fill it so the glass is nearly full. Wait until the oil separates from the water if you need to, this shouldn’t take long.

 

 

Step 3

Add about 5 drops of the food colouring (you may need a little more depending how big your glass or bottle is) and watch it sink through the oil and into the bottom.

 

   

 

 

Step 4

Cut the the fizzing tablet in half and add it in, it will also sink through the oil and into the water.

 

 

   

 

Step 5

Watch the bubbles begin to move up and down your home made lava lamp! Add in the other half of the fizzing tablet to keep it going.

 

      

 

Tips

  • You could turn the lights off/shut the curtains and shine a torch behind your lava lamp for ultimate effect.
  • If you want to keep your lava lamp for another time, just seal the top with clingfilm or a lid. Add more of the fizzing tablet when you are ready to use it again.
  • Don’t add too much of the tablet all at once as it will bubble over, this happened to me!

 

 

What is the science?

Just like The Blob Effect experiment, the oil sits on top of the water because it is lighter, or less dense than water. When the tablet sank into the water and started fizzing it produced a gas. The gas rose to the surface taking the coloured water with it in the form of blobs (or blue blobs in my case). The gas is then released and the blobs of coloured water, remember which are heavier than the oil, falls back down.

 

 

More experiments

  • Does the temperature of the water have an affect?
  • Does the size or shape of the bottle or glass affect how many blobs are produced?
  • Does the effect still work if you sealed the glass or bottle with a lid?

 

https://john-clifford-school.primarysite.media/media/lava-lamp-experiment Take a look at a video of my experiment by licking this link. 
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WC 29.6.20

Static Magic

 

Can you ‘wow’ people with these magic tricks with the power of static electricity?

 

You will need:

  • An inflated balloon
  • A head of hair
  • A running cold water tap
  • A small empty can.

 

Step 1

 

Rub the balloon on your head of hair for ten seconds .Now you can do the classic ‘sticking up hair’ trick!

 

 

Step 2

 

For a water bending trick, turn your tap on so it runs a slow with a steady stream of water. After rubbing the balloon on your head of hair for 10 seconds, hold the balloon close to the stream of running water, but without letting the balloon touch the water. If all goes well, it should bend the water towards the balloon.

 

 

Step 3

 

For a moving can trick, place the empty can on a smooth flat surface. Rub the balloon on your head of hair once again and hold it close to the can without letting them touch. The can should roll towards the balloon.

 

 

Top Tips!

  • Blow up a couple of balloons in case one pops, mine did!

 

 

 

What is the science?

When you rub the balloon on your head of hair, tiny atoms in the hair, called electrons, build up on the surface of the balloon. This is static electricity, or non moving electricity. The electrons built up on the balloon have a negative charge. The negative electrons are attracted to anything with positive charge. It is similar to the way magnets work. So the negative electrons on the balloons surface pulls the water and the can (which have a positive charge) towards it.

 

More experiments

  • Does it need to be a balloon? Can you charge up anything, like a comb?
  • Does the temperature of the water have an impact?
  • Does the amount of moisture in the air affect the static electricity? Perhaps you could give it a go in a bathroom, after it is filled with steam from a bath or shower.
  • Does the size of the balloon affect the experiment?
  • Can you do any other static magic tricks?

WC 22.6.20

The Blob Effect

 

You need:

 

  • A small empty plastic bottle or a clear tumbler glass
  • Water
  • Food colouring
  • Cooking oil
  • Salt

 

Step 1

Fill ¾ of your bottle or glass with water and add 2 or 3 drops of food colouring.

  

 

 

Step 2

Carefully pour in 50ml of oil. The oil will float on the top.

 

 

 

Step 3

Sprinkle in a teaspoon of salt.

 

 

 

Step 4

Now you can watch the blobs move up and down. Add more salt if you want to keep the effect going.

 

 

 

 

Tips

  • You don’t need the food colouring to creat the effect, so don’t worry if you don’t have any. I wanted to add red to make it look like bubbling lava, but I only had yellow! You can choose any colour if you have food colouring at home.

What is the science?


Oil is lighter than water, which is why it sits at the top. The salt is heavier than the oil and so sinks through it into the water, but taking some of the oil with it. The salt begins to dissolve in the water and releases the oil. The oil floats back to the top and creates the floating blob effect.

 

More experiments


 Do different kinds of oil give different effects?
 Does the size or shape of the bottle or glass affect the reaction?
 Do other substances work other than salt, perhaps sand or sugar?

=========================================================================================

WC 15.6.20

Fizz Pump!

 

Pump up a balloon by creating a gas in a bottle.

 

You need:

 

  • A small empty plastic bottle
  • Vinegar
  • Bicarbonate of soda
  • A balloon

 

Step 1

Pour 125ml of vinegar into the bottle.

 

 

Step 2

Stretch the balloon a little to loosen it and carefully poor in the bicarbonate of soda to fill it about half way.

 

 

Step 3

Put the end of the balloon over the bottle without letting the bicarbonate of soda fall out into the vinegar.

 

 

Step 4

Once the balloon is tightly attached to the bottle, you can let the bicarbonate of soda drop into the bottle and watch your balloon inflate!

 

  

Tips

  • Use a small funnel to pour the bicarbonate of soda into the balloon, if you don’t have one you could make one by rolling up some paper into a cone shape.
  • Try twisting the balloon a little to prevent the bicarbonate of soda from falling out when you are attaching it to your bottle.
  • Hold the bottle as the balloon inflates so it does not tip over

 

What is the science?

When mixed, vinegar and bicarbonate of soda react and create a gas called carbon dioxide. The gas needs to spread out and so fills the balloon and pumps it up.

 

More experiments

  • Does the size of the bottle affect how much the balloon inflates?
  • Can the amount the balloon inflates be controlled by the amount of vinegar and bicarbonate of soda?

 

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WC 8.6.20

Soap Powered Boat!

 

Make a boat that you can power with washing up liquid!

 

You need:

 

  • Cardboard
  • Scissors
  • Washing up liquid
  • A toothpick or a chopstick (or anything thin a pointy)
  • A bowl, tray or sink which you can fill with water.

 

Step 1

To make your boat cut a piece of cardboard into the shape below.

 

 
 

 

 

Step 2

Cut out a triangular shape (missing its bottom corner). Now you can choose if you want to make your boat a little fancy by adding some decorations. I used paper and a straw to make a little mast with a flag.

 

 
   
 

 

 
   

 

 

Step 3

Fill your bowl/sink or tray with water and use your chopstick or toothpick to spread washing up liquid around the edges of the triangle.

 

       
       
 

 

 

 

Step 4

Watch your boat wiz around the water powered by the soap.

 

Tips

  • You could make a bigger boat but I made mine 5cm long.
  • You could cut out multiple shapes to glue layers of cardboard together to make it last longer. Or try and use a different material to make your boat.
  • If you want another go, make sure you rinse out the soap from the water.

 

 

What is the science?

 

Water molecules are strongly attracted to each other and stick close together. This creates a strong but flexible "skin" on the water's surface called surface tension. Surface tension allows the cardboard boat to float on top of the water.

 

Adding the soap disrupts the arrangement of the water molecules. The water molecules near the detergent are attracted to the detergent as well as to other water molecules, so the surface tension of the water behind the boat decreases. Water molecules move from areas of low surface tension to areas of high surface tension. The boat is pulled towards areas of high surface tension by the water in front of the boat

 

 

More experiments

  • Does warm or cold water help the powered boat work better?
  • Does the size of the boat make a difference?
  • What materials make the best floating boat?
  • Does the shape of the boat make a difference?
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