Tag Archives: Science Experiments

Transpiration – Flower Transformation

Transpiration – Flower Transformation

srpcarnationFind More Science Experiments Plant parts like petals, leaves and stems have little holes called stomata – kind of like the pores in our skin. When stomata open, water escapes. When this happens the water is replaced by the plant absorbing water up from the roots into the stem and leaves and petals. As water evaporates from the leaves and petals more water is sucked up through the stem from the roots. This is called tranpiration…kind of like a person sucking on a straw. What You Need:

  • White Flowers (Carnation, Queen Anne’s Lace)
  • Food Coloring
  • Water
  • Vase

Fill a vase with water. Add food coloring to the water. Collect or buy some white flowers. Make a fresh cut at the end of the flower stem and put the flowers in the water. Check on the flowers every hour. How are the petals changing?

Mythbusters Science Fair Book Super Simple Things To Do With Plants Eyewitness Plant

Words to Know: Cohesion – When molecules of the same substance stick together. Transpiration – The loss of water from the parts of plants; petals, leaves, stems, flowers, etc. Absorb –  To soak up. Evaporation – Water changing from a liquid to a vapor.

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Air Pressure – Do Not Open Bottle

Air Pressure – Do Not Open Bottle

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srpwaterbottleEven though air seems like nothing, it really is something. Gases like air, even though they are not visible to our eyes, are made up of molecules just like solid objects. These molecules are pulled toward the earth by gravity.

Earth is surrounded by a layer of air that is heavy. That layer of air exerts pressure on the surface of the earth, a lot of pressure. Our bodies are used to it so it doesn’t bother us. In fact, we are so used to it that what bothers us is when the air pressure is gone.

The higher you go in the atmosphere, the less air pressure there is because the “thickness” of the air is less the higher you go. That’s why airplanes have “pressurized” cabins. We can’t survive in too little air pressure.

What You Need:

  • Empty Water Bottle
  • Thumb Tack
  • Water

As the bottle is filled with water the water pushes any air left in the bottle out. When you put the lid on no air can get in the botter either. Air on the outside of the bottle is pushing on it as well as the lid. The small holes in the bootle aren’t big enough for air to sneak in and increase the air pressure on the water…but when you open the cap more air can get in and press down on the water making it leak out the holes.

Here are some websites and books that will help you understand air pressure:

That Surprise and Delight Naked Eggs and Flying Potatoes Super Simple Things to Do With Water

Words to Know:

Air Pressure – The force that air exerts due to it’s weight. Even though air seems like nothing, it really is something. Gases like air, even though they are not visible to our eyes, are made up of molecules just like solid objects.

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Sound Waves – Salt Sound Meter

Sound Waves – Salt Sound Meter

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Sound is vibrations that move through the air or through liquids or solids. The sounds we usually hear are vibrations that move through the air. Your voice is the vibration of your vocal chords. The tiny bones inside your ears pick up sound vibrations in the air and send those messages to your brain. You can actually see sound…if you know how to look.

srpwhistleWhat You Need:

  • Large Bowl
  • Plastic Wrap
  • Salt
  • Water
  • a Whistle
  • 2 Large Metal Pans
  • Anything That Makes Noise!

Stretch a large piece of plastic wrap over a bowl and pull it tight on all the edges. Sprinkle salt on top of the plastic wrap. Now blow a whistle or clap your hands or bang two objects together – how does the salt behave? Now clean the salt off and try putting drops of water on top of the plastic wrap. Can you make the water move with sound?

Science Experiment Idea:

Try different noisemakers to see which one will move the salt the most. Make marks on the platic wrap with a sharpie to help you see how much the salt moves. Try different volumes of sound both loud and soft as well as high and low pitches. For example, can you hum and make the salt move? Can you scream and make the salt move? How about a kazoo? A whistle? Which kind of sound do you think will move the salt the most? After testing, were you right?

Light and Sound Loud or soft? high or low? : a look at sound Listen Learn about Sound The Science of a Guitar

Words to Know:

Sound – Vibrations that travel through a solid, liquid or gas.
Volume – The loudness of sound.
Pitch – How high or how low a sound is.

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Make a Kaleidoscope

Make a Kaleidoscope

srpkaleidoscopeFind More Science Experiments

Many of you have probably played with a kaleidoscope. It is a tube that you hold up to your eye. You point the tube toward light and then slowly turn it. As you turn the tube you can see patterns of colors at the other end of the tube. A kaleidoscope works by reflecting light.

Light travels in a straight line. When light bumps into something it changes direction. If light bumps into something shiny it reflects back in the direction it came from. Think of light like a bouning ball. In a kaleidoscope there are shiny surfaces. If you make your own kaleidoscope you can use mirrors or aluminum foil. When you point the kaleidscope toward light, the light enters the kaleidoscope and reflects back and forth between the shiny surfaces inside the kaleidoscope. Since you have filled the end of the kaleidoscope with little shiny objects, the light bounces off those too and makes the interesting patterns of color. As you turn the kaleidoscope the little shiny objects move which makes the patterns of color move.

Here is a video that will show you how to make your own kaleidoscope:

Here are some websites and books that will help you understand how kaleidoscopes work or build your own:

Stomp Rockets, Catapults & Kaleidoscopes
Build Your Own Mini Golf Course (Kaleidoscope page 18)

Stomp Rockets Catapults and Kaleidoscopes Build Your Own Light and Sound Tricks of Light and Sound

Words to Know:

Reflect: To bounce off.

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Hydrologic (Water) Cycle: Make a Terrarium

Hydrologic (Water) Cycle: Make a Terrarium

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srpwatercycleAll of the water on the earth is in constant motion. Water falls to the earth as rain and then evaporates back up into the air making clouds. Then the water falls back down to earth again as rain. This cycle is call the hydrologic or water cycle.

To see how the hydrologic cycle works you can make your own little model of the earth in a terrarium. A terrarium is a little garden inside a sealed container.

What You Need:srpterrariumparts

  • a Clear Plastic or Glass Container With a Lid
  • Stones
  • Soil
  • Plants
  • Water
  • Little Toys for Decoration (optional)

When you poor water into your terrarium that is the beginning of the water srpterrariumsingle1cycle. You essentially have made it rain in your little glass world. When you set your terrarium in the sun the water inside the terrarium heats up and turns into water vapor in the air. This is called evaporation. When the water cools back down, it turns back into a liquid.  You will see condensation – water droplets – sticking to the lid of your terrarium. If the drops get large enough, they will roll down the sides of the container or fall from the lid – rain!

srpterrariumcloseup31The close-up on the left shows the condensation that began to form on the inside of the jar after only 1 hour sitting in the sun.

If there is too much water just open the lid and let some of the water evaporate. If your plants look wilted or dry, try adding a little more water. It might take some trial and error to get the amount of water needed just right.

Here are some websites and books that give you step by step directions for making a terrarium:

 

Terrariums for Kids Super Simple Things To Do With Plants Earth's Cycles Living Sunlight

Science Experiment Idea: Make three identical terrariums. You have to use the same kind of container, the same amount of soil & the same plants. Make your variable (the thing you are going to test) the amount of water you put into the terrariums. Measure a different amount of water into each terrarium. Close the lids and watch the terrariums over several days to see which amount of water made the best environment for your plants. A terrarium with too little water will have dry plants. A terrarium with too much water will have plants with yellow leaves and maybe even mold growing on the soil!

Words to Know:

Terrarium – A clear container with a lid used for growing plants.
Hydrologic (Water) Cycle – The movement of water from liquid to gas (evaporation) and from gas to liquid (precipitation).
Condensation – Water vapor cooling off and changing to liquid water.
Evaporation – Liquid water heating up and changing to water vapor.
Precipitation – Rain, snow, or hail.

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