Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Balloons! (Part 2)

We also used balloons to learn about force. But instead of just learning, we made it a competitive game. Whoever learned the most, won.

We held balloon races by taping inflated (but not tied) balloons to a straw threaded on a piece of yarn tied between two chairs. Just in case any of you face the mental challenges I myself suffer when faced with elementary-school level directions, I'll lay it out step by step. As I learned the hard way, order is sort of important. First, tie the string onto one chair. Then thread the string through the straw. After that, you can tie the string to the other chair. Once the strings are in place, you can dangle some tape from the straw to adhere a balloon. We released the balloons multiple times, so I determined it was possible to inflate them once they were already attached.

I tried to inflate them equally and use a clear countdown for their release. Nonetheless, orange was clearly the better athlete.

I was careful to have the kids root for color and not for the balloon owner. But, it didn't matter. Whichever balloon Fifi was not in command of, was invariably the winner; and much whining did ensue. But I put her in charge of the keeping-track-of-winners graph and so, in that small way, she got to win every time.

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