And now on to the good! As mom C mentioned, “Congratulations. You’ve discovered that boys love rockets!” And they sure did! So did the girls. I got the idea from this super creative blog, A Little Learning for Two
It was a great day of science in our playgroup last week. First we started with decorating the rockets (it was really hard to get a picture of her using markers on the actual rocket and not on the table, her hands, etc). I had a bunch of rockets pre-cut out of thin cardboard, used from Cheerios and Bunnies boxes. We had markers to decorate the uncoated side and pencils to decorate the coated side. Once the decorating was completed, I had precut some straws about 3/4 the length of the rocket and taped them to the uncoated side. I then stuck a piece of double sided tape to the coated side, grabbed a balloon and we were on our way.
In the room itself, there was a random hook, which I tied several long pieces of fishing wire. This gave everyone the chance to be using their rocket at once, if they wanted to, or at their own speed. We threaded the fishing line through the straw. I had the children hold the fishing line while I blew up the balloon (buy the most expensive balloons – I went cheap on the balloons and they were a terror to blow up). I stuck the balloon to the double sided tape, we did a count down and BLAST OFF!
This was one of those great science projects that seemed to really engage the youngest and the oldest in the class. For the older children, it kept their minds rolling. One child was inspired, based on the ridiculous effort to blow up the balloons, to create a balloon blowing up invention (and inspiring me to look into setting up a tinkering lab). Another spent the entire playgroup perfecting his rocket and the launch, from using two lines, two straws, he may have even had two balloons at one point. This was one project that the children were eager to take home. Nearly all of the fishing lines went home. I even heard from one mom who said, at home, when she didn’t have double sided tape, found great success using electrical tape (because it got used a lot!). I will say the double sided tape only worked for about three blasts before it needed to be replaced with a new piece.