Archive for October, 2010

Watch that Sound

Sound can be seen in the form of vibrations caused by the sound waves. Here you can use the sense of sight to experience the sense of sound. People who are deaf can feel music when they touch the music system speaker and feel the vibrations. This happens because the sound waves vibrate the particles in the air through which they travel.

Once again here is a science experiment with which you can experience the sound vibrations in action. For this experiment you will need a plastic bottle with its bottom cut out. Cover the cut opening with a plastic bag and hold it in place with a rubber band. This will give you a sort or bottle drum.

Now light a candle and make sure there is no fan on to make the flame move. point the open neck of the bottle drum at the candle and tap the drum end of the bottle with your fingers. You will see that the flame will begin to dance with the vibrations of the air particles which were trapped in the bottle and moved out thanks to the drumming.

If you drum hard enough the flame will be put out as the air will rush out in a fast movement much like how you would blow out the candle with your own breath. If you found this experiment fun to do you may want to try out some more. Check out the science fair project ideas here.

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The magical vibrations of sound

Can you see sound? Oh yes you can. At least you can see the vibrations which are produced by the sound waves. Here are a few simple activities or science projects which will allow you to see sound. You can do these activities around the house. Some young kids may need parental supervision so make sure they are around to help.

For the first sighting of magical vibrations caused by sound you will need a bowl, some clingfilm to cover the bowl, some grains of rice or sugar, a baking tray and a wooden spoon. Now cover the bowl with the clingfilm and sprinkle the rice or sugar on top of it. Now hold the baking tray above the bowl, close to it but not touching it.  Use the wooden spoon to strike the baking tray to make a loud sound. The sound will travel in waves and reach the clingfilm and make it vibrate and because of this the rice or sugar on it will jump. And so you can see the vibrations of sound in them.

In the second experiment we will use a bit of modeling clay and a drinking straw. You will also need a volunteer friend or parent to help you. Here’s what you do. Locate the pulse of your volunteer on the wrist and place the modeling clay in the exact same spot. Now fix the drinking straw in the clay and watch it vibrate each time the heat beats. Try out more science projects here.

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Turn an egg into a ball

Can you imagine playing with an egg as you would bounce a ball? Not possible you say as the shell would crack and the egg would splat! But guess what? You can make an egg bounce gently and you don’t have to worry about the shell cracking as you will actually dissolve the shell. Does that sound interesting? Then read on about this science experiment.

First we are going to boil the egg. So make sure that you have an adult help you with the hob and the boiling water. Once the water is boiling cook the egg for a further ten minutes to ensure that all the liquid is solidified. Then let it cool. Once it is cooled down place it in a glass bottle. Now pour vinegar into the bottle till the egg is completely covered.

Shut the lid of the bottle and leave the egg like that in the vinegar for a week. Over the week you will notice that the egg shell will bubble up and gradually dissolve. Now you can take out the shell less egg from the vinegar and play with it like you would with a soft bouncy ball. Did you have fun playing with your bouncy egg? Try out this science experiment based on eggs as well.

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And its gone – Absorption

A spill on the dining table does not exactly sound like the ideal venue for a science lesson, but it can be. Just as the spill is easy to mop up if you have the right kind of wash cloth, the scientific principle of absorption can be explained with a quick practical. Here is a simple science project that you can use to determine what cloth wipes up water spills better than the others. Its simple to do.

Here’s what you will need. A glass of water, a table to create the spills on, and a few different wash cloths made out different fibers and materials. You will also need a stop watch to calculate how fast the cloth wiped up the spill. Note down the readings in a note book so that you can compare the results later.

The process is very easy. You create a spill on the table top with the water that you have. Then you use a wash cloth to absorb it. You note the time it takes for the cloth to soak up all the water. Then you repeat the process with all the different wash cloths that you have. Be sure to make the spills with the same amount of water. Use a peg measure to get the exact same quantity of water on the table each time. Have fun mopping up. Try out some more science projects here.

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And its sunk – Absorption

The full effect of wonder when a sponge moves over a wet surface and leaves it dry is best experienced for the first time as a child. So just what is it about the sponge that allows it to make the fluid disappear from sight? It is the property of absorption. The sponge has a million little holes into which the liquid seeps in and allows the surface to get dried up. And here is a fund science experiment for you to do using the same principle of absorption.

Take a hollow dish about 5 inches tall and a piece of sponge. In the dish add some water to cover about 4 inches height and put the piece of sponge gently into it on top of the water. Does it sink or does it float? It will float. Then after five minutes take a look at the same sponge is it floating or has it sunk? It will have sunk. Or at least it would be closer to the bottom of the dish than to the top.

Why did this happen? Because the piece of sponge is absorbing the water as it is kept afloat on the water. Then it gradually becomes heavier as the volume of water in the sponge increases and now it can no longer float on the water and begins to sink. This is why it will gradually sink to the bottom of the dish. Try out some more science experiments here.

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