critical thinking

Bean Power

This experiment comes from tonight's supper. I have been craving a big pot of Great Northern Beans; so last night I put some into a pot of water to soak overnight. The results reminded me of a fun science experiment I had done before.

Bad Chocolate?

I mentioned that I had a lot of fun experimenting with carbonated soda (and drinking it) and that I should do an experiment with chocolate. I got quite a few e-mails suggesting experiments with chocolate, but this one was the most common. It has to do with the white discoloration that you sometimes find on old chocolate.

Arm Raising

This experiment is something that we used do for fun when I was a kid. (No jokes about dinosaurs or the Dark Ages, please.) It was back in the days before video games and the internet. Back in the days when there were only 4 TV channels and you had to get up and turn the dial on the TV to change the channel. Even so, we still had lots of fun. This is a science trick that always amazes people.

An Easy Swing?

I have taught several classes on Amusement Park Physics, and I usually include several activities on the carnival type games. Those games often use science, making something look simple and easy, when it is actually difficult to do. This activity is based on a carnival game where you try to swing a weight on a string and knock over a bottle.

Air has Weight

This experiment comes from a question sent to me a homeschooling mom named Elaine. It is based on a "classic" experiment often seen in textbooks to show that air has weight. While it starts simple, it takes some twists along the way that often cause people to misunderstand what is actually happening.

A Cup of Cold

This experiment comes from some research I am doing on "Science With Your Refrigerator," but it has its roots in my childhood. You may recognize some of your childhood too.

A Compass at the South Pole

This experiment comes from a question sent to me by a subscriber. His question was, "If I were standing directly on the South Pole and I was holding a compass, where would the needle be pointing?"

Lets do this scientifically. Before you read on or try the experiment, think about it. Think about what you know about magnets. Think about how a compass works. Once you have come up with an idea of what you think would happen, then you will be ready to try this.

75% Water

When you read that 75% of the Earth's surface is covered by water, what does it really mean? The answer goes far beyond just a simple fact. As with many topics in science, the deeper you go, the more you find.

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