STEM Group 12/8/2023 Write up
The session today was a steady stream of people in to room 12. We had a few things going on:-
Sand box craters
Dropping stones in to a tray of sand to simulate meteors hitting the surface of a planet or moon and resulting in craters. Interactive activity. The planning for this is here
Magnesium in Vinegar
This was a demonstration so adding some Magnesium ribbon to some Vinegar in conical flask. This was topped up with more Magnesium a few times during the session.
I set out a magnet and various different materials, including copper coins, paper clips and eventually added a spatula, Magnesium ribbon and copper foil so visitors could experiment to see which materials were magnetic.
This is an electronic teaching aide, The idea is that the different segments have different instructions, for example; Forward, Left, Right, Play music, the segments can be put connected together in different orders so that pressing the start button the caterpillar moves around as per instructions, this proved really popular.
Using pre-prepared bubble solution, that has Sugar as an ingredient, bubbles can be made so they can be caught and not pop as easily, this again proved popular and we managed to get bubbles to stick together, make bug bubbles and even bounce bubbles around on some material.
This is a kit that I built up last year, the idea is the two spinning disks propel a ping pong ball forward.
Hair Dryer ping pong ball balancing
Using a Hair dryer in an upright position, it is possible to balance a ping pong ball on the air pocket produced by the dryer. This is a demonstration of Bernoulli’s Principle an explanation of this and the experiment can be found here
Simple Acid / Alkalis
I got out some of the test tube racks & test tubes and we had a go at seeing what happens when red cabbage indicator is added to vinegar and Bicarbonate of soda solution. This went well, we even had a go at mixing the solutions but extended this to include mixing Bicarbonate of Soda powder with citric acid powder, then adding water to produce a reaction.
So in all a very good session, and it generated some interest and ideas for the session in September. I also proved that I can communicate with children, young people and adults and run activities that are engaging and have a fun, learning element to them too.
Next STEM group
The next STEM group event will take place on the 9th September. I will post updates to this blog too.