Thursday, October 24, 2013

SMMART SCIENCE: Trick or Treat Tossers

Physics and Math...what could excite your children more!?!

Let's make a lever launcher to toss those Tricky Treats across the room.  You can make a launcher by just using plastic spoons that won't launch the treats too far, or one made with popsicle sticks that tosses a bit farther.

I'll explain with the spoons.  You'll need two spoons or popsicle sticks.  Lay one spoon on top of the other.  Secure the handle of the spoons together with a rubber band at the very bottom of the handles.  Slide a pencil inbetween the spoons and push it down towards the bottom of the handles.  Then secure the pencil in place.  The pencil acts as a fulcrum for this lever launcher.

If you use popsicle sticks, lay one on top of the other and secure the very end of one side with a rubberband.  Slide a pencil inbetween the popsicle sticks and secure the pencil with a rubberband.  You can now lay a spoon face up on top of one of the popsicle sticks.  Secure the spoon with a rubberband around the spoon handle and the popsicle stick.  The spoon will act as a "holder" for the Halloween treats.

Now, set a treat inside the spoon "cup".  Push down towards the table on the tip of the spoon and release... Watch the treat soar.

Instead of just launching treats randomly, let's set out a cupcake tin.  Try to launch the treats into the tin.  On the bottom of each cup of the cupcake tin, place a number from 1 - 12 inside of it.  (You can just write the numbers on a piece of paper or a small sticky note paper)

Now, let your child launch away and try to get as many as they can into the cupcake tin.  Now for the math.  If you have a little learner, they can just count the number of treats that landed into a certain cup.  More advanced learners can add or subtract the number of treats with the number in the bottom of the cup.  Multiplication students can multiply the number that is on the bottom of the cup with the number of treats that landed in that cupcake cup.  Or, you can divide the two numbers.

However you play, your child will enjoy launching the treats and watching them soar!

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