Friday, April 16, 2010

Experimenting with Static Electricity

A friend of mine gave me a stack of books to borrow and use as resources for finding fun and educational kid activities. One of them is Lotions, Potions, and Slime Mudpies and More! by Nancy Blakey. This book has all kinds of fun activities you can do! Warning: I may do a book review on this later!

Wednesday we did a fun activity using: 1 package flavored gelatin (we used strawberry), 1 package of unflavored gelatin (I got a 36ct pack at Kroger for $6.99 becaue I knew I was going to need a bunch for several other activities later on.) and a balloon.

Here are the directions quoted directly from the book:
"Pour half of the package of flavored gelatin granules onto a small saucer. Pour the whole package of the unflavored gelatin onto another small saucer. Blow up the balloon and tie it off. Rub the baloon on your head until your hair is full of static (a piece of wool works too). Hold the static side of the balloon over the flavored gelatin. Watch and listen. Brush the balloon off into the sink, and rub on your hair once again. Hold over the unflavored gelatin granules.
What happens? Rubbing the balloon on your hair transfers extra electrons to the balloon. These extra electrons make a static charge and attract the protein fibers in the gelatin. The movement is particularly dramatic in the unflavored gelatin, forming columns of gelatin several inches long!"

When we did it, we used a whole packet of both kinds of gelatin and we didn't get any coloumns that were inches long. Maybe we didn't rub the balloon on our heads long enough? Anyway, you could see the spikes coming up and we caught it all on camera. Here are some pictures and below that is a short video! Enjoy and have fun experimenting!

1 comment:

  1. Very cool!!! I would have never thought to try this. I'll have to dig up a few balloons!

    Thanks again for sharing at the For the Kids Friday Link Party at Sun Scholars! I look forward to having you back this Friday!


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