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How to Make a Simple Paper Kite11/09/2020

We love flying kites but unfortunately the weather in the UK isn’t always ideal for it. However, this simple paper kite can be flown indoors or outdoors! Read on to find out how to make your own and the science behind why it flies.

You will need:

  • A4 paper
  • Extra piece of paper
  • Stapler
  • Holepunch
  • 50cm 5tring

Method:

  • Fold your A4 paper in half (like you are folding a card).

  • Take the top corner and place it on the opposite side, about 1/3rd of the way down.
  • Do the same on the other side.
  • Staple them in place.
  • We made a beak and some tail feathers for our kite! But you may want to do something different.
  •  Put a hole punch around 1-2cm from the staple.
  • Thread the string through the hole and tie in place.
  • Hold the end of the string and wave it around to fly your simple paper kite!finished simple paper kite

The Science Bit:

The shape of this simple paper kite makes it a great flier. The curved wings mean that the air has to travel faster to get over them, fast moving air has lower pressure. The air travelling underneath the kite, and the air going through the wing tunnels doesn’t have to travel as fast and so it has a higher pressure, which pushes the kite up. This is called Bernoulli’s principle!

Looking for more experiments to try at home but don’t have the equipment? Find lots of home kits, including our Big Box of Science, on our shop!

Simple Hydrogel Experiment09/09/2020

Have you heard of hydrogels? Would you like to try a hydrogel experiment? Hydrogels are polymer chains (lots of atoms linked together) that are ‘hydrophillic’ which means they love water! This makes them super absorbent. Some hydrogels are saturated which means they have already soaked up water – hair gel is an example of this. Other hydrogels are unsaturated which means they haven’t soaked up water but they can if they need to. An example of this is the material inside a baby’s nappy! In this simple hydrogel experiment we are going to be removing the water from a saturated hydrogel – hair gel!

To do this hydrogel experiment – you will need:

  • Hair gel – any brand will do.
  • Salt
  • Little pot or cup

equipment needed for this hydrogel experiment

The method:

1) Put some hair gel into a little pot. Just a little squirt will work fine.

gel ready for a hydrogel experiment

2) Sprinkle some salt on top of the hair gel

You should see the hydrogel start to turn from a gel into a liquid – this is the water coming out of the hydrogel structure.

The result of our hydrogel experiment

 

Why not try testing different hair gel brands or research some other household hydrogels and give them a try! Do you think the experiment would work with sugar instead of salt? Write a prediction and then give it a try.

The science:

So how did this hydrogel experiment work? Hair gel is a saturated hydrogel so it contains lots of water, held inside lots of chains of atoms stuck together. Water bonds to salt so when you put salt on top of your hair gel, the water came out of the hydrogel to try and stick to the salt. This made the hydrogel structure collapse. This is why when you have salty food, you feel thirsty – salt sucks water out of your cells in the same way that it sucked the water out of the hair gel. If you have too much salt, you get dehydrated.

Home ed online science sessions03/09/2020

Online science course for home educated childrenOur next course of online home ed science sessions starts on the 1st October 2020 and is aimed at home educated children aged 5-9. This course will be run via Zoom and you will need a computer to access the sessions. A webcam is desirable but not essential and your child does not have to be on camera. Just £4 per session and £1 for each additional sibling.

These 45 minute home ed science sessions are run by a highly trained scientist and provide children with an opportunity to socialise whilst learning. Sharing results is a key part of scientific research and these sessions will encourage collaboration.

All sessions will involve practical science experiments that use easily obtainable materials. Please see below for a list of sessions and the equipment that will be needed. You will need to source this equipment ahead of each session but you are likely to have most of it at home already. The majority of each session will be practical experiments with some time for watching a larger demo and sharing ideas with other children in the group.

Prices

The price for a block of four sessions is £16 per screen. Additional siblings are welcome to share a screen and work on the activities together and there is an additional total cost of £4 per additional sibling. All sessions will be recorded so that you can access the session even if you are unavailable one week. We are also on hand for help and support between sessions too.

This club will be strictly limited to 15 screens and 20 participants so that every child gets the most out of the club.

Click here to sign up

You may also be interested in our online coding course for children aged 7-12.

Sessions

Session 1 – 11am – 1st October – Colours – In this first session, children will be exploring the science of colour and learning the different between the colours of light and the colours of ink. We will be conducting chromatography, making bubbles to trap rainbows and doing a colour changing reaction. You will need:

  • Kitchen roll/toilet paper x 3 sheets
  • Felt tip pens (a selection of colours)
  • Cup of water x 2
  • Spinner template (either printed our template or draw your own)
  • Cocktail stick/sharp pencil
  • Red cabbage (just a section or a few leaves is fine)
  • One or more acids (e.g. vinegar, citric acid, lemon juice)
  • One or more alkalis (e.g. bicarbonate of soda, baking powder, washing powder, toothpaste),
  • Washing up liquid
  • Straw (paper or plastic)

Session 2 – 11am – 8th October – Rockets and flight – This session is all about forces and children will be making a range of flying machines. You will need:

  • Straw (paper or plastic)
  • Scissors
  • Paper clips x 3
  • A4 paper x 4 sheets (can be scrap paper)
  • Sticky tape

Session 3 – 11am – 15th October – Chemical and physical reactions – Children will go away from this session with a passion for chemistry. They will also know the difference between a chemical and physical reaction! You will need:

  • Cup of water,
  • Small amount of vegetable oil (as much as you can spare)
  • Clear cup/glass x 3
  • Bicarbonate of soda/baking powder
  • Vinegar/lemon juice
  • Teaspoon
  • Empty bottle (any size)
  • Balloon

Session 4 – 11am – 22nd October – Magic science – Some experiments are so cool, they look like magic! This session includes lots of ‘tricks’ and best of all, children will learn how they are done! You will need:

  • String x 15 cm length (roughly)
  • Tray/washing up bowl
  • Sticky tape,
  • 2 x empty clear cups
  • Cup of water
  • A4 paper x 2 sheets (can be scrap)
  • Scissors
  • Pen (any colour). 

Click here to sign up 

 

Beginners Home Ed Coding Course03/09/2020

Is your child interested in learning to code? Would you rather they were designing video games rather than playing them? Home educating and don’t know where to start? Get to grips with the basics of coding with our online coding course specifically designed for home educated children aged 7-12.

All sessions will be run online via zoom so are suitable for children across the UK. Coding sessions will last for one hour per week and children will be working with the BBC Micro:bit and blockly coding. Children will be able to share their coding creations with one another and a scientist will be on hand to help with any tricky coding bugs!

This code club is designed for children with limited/no coding experience and is suitable for children aged 7-12. You will need a computer (mac or pc) with internet access and a USB port. A webcam is desirable but not essential and there is no requirement for your child to be on camera.

In order to take part, your child will also need a BBC Micro:bit microcomputer. We are able to sell these (plus all required accessories) for an exclusive price of £14 (rrp £18.99) for children signed up to the coding club – with free postage too! All children signed up to the Coding Club will also receive a printable certificate and free Ebook on completion of the club. This E-book contains additional projects and links to helpful videos.

Prices

The price for a block of four sessions is £24 per screen (without Micro:bit) or £38 (with Micro:bit). Siblings are welcome to share a screen and work on the activities together. All sessions will be recorded so that you can access the session even if you are unavailable one week. We are also on hand for help and support between sessions too.

This club will be strictly limited to 15 participants so that every child gets the most out of the club.

Click here to sign up (for participants who already have a BBC:Microbit)

Click here to sign up (for participants who would like to purchase a BBC:Microbit)

You may also be interested in our online science sessions for children aged 5 – 9.

Sessions

Session 1 – 11am – 29th September – Getting started and making an animation – In this session, children will be getting started with the online editor, coding their own words, phrases and animations and downloading them onto the Micro:bit.

Session 2 – 11am – 6th October – Making a compass and a step counter – This week we will be using the built in magnetic sensor and accelerometer to code a step counter and a compass.

Session 3 – 11am – 13th October – Coding simple games – Next up, we will be coding some simple games including a rock, paper scissors game. Children will be using ‘if _____ then______’ commands and setting countdown timers plus learning how to create a reset button for their game.

Session 4 – 11am – 20th October – Coding a more advanced game – In this session, children will be using loops, game commands and animations to code a more advanced game that is playable on the Micro:Bit.

Click here to sign up (for participants who already have a BBC:Microbit)

Click here to sign up (for participants who would like to purchase a BBC:Microbit)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Speedy Experiment – Lemon Volcano20/08/2020

I can’t say I’m a big fan of lemons. They’re just like oranges, but a more boring colour and with a horrible taste. But, like them or hate them, with a few simple ingredients, you can turn them into a lemon volcano! You don’t need time or a laboratory for this one; like the tremendous teabag rocket, the test takes less than ten minutes. Furthermore, it uses entirely household materials, so won’t harm the environment!

You will need:

  • A lemon – mine was quite an old one, which was good as it stopped me from wasting food.
  • A spoon
  • A knife (get a grown-up’s help for this one!)
  • Bicarbonate of Soda
  • A spare container; the second ramekin (little dish) in my photograph has a dash of washing-up liquid under the recommendation of another experimenter; however, I found that I didn’t need this.

The method:

1) Cut the two ends off of the lemon with the knife.

2) Use the spoon to core out some of the middle.

This should make a “bowl” shape like the image above.

3) Squeeze out the lemon juice from the lemon-ends into the spare container.

4) Add some bicarbonate of soda to your lemon-bowl.

The lemon juice will react with the soda and create an eruption. If your reaction is underwhelming, add a little of your spare lemon juice…

If you like, try testing the lemon volcano method with other citrus fruit. Does it work with lime? Orange? Grapefruit?

The science:

Bicarbonate of soda contains carbon – it’s in the name (bicarbonate) . When the citric acid in lemon juice reacts with the soda, those carbon dixoide atoms gain two oxygen atom companions each, and become carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide is a gas, so that creates bubbles in the juice-and-soda – and because quite a lot of it is being produced, the lemon seems to erupt!

Speedy Experiment – Alien Goo05/08/2020

Alien goo. What is it? Why do aliens use it? When did aliens discover it? I can’t answer any of those questions, because as far as we know, alien goo doesn’t exist. But I can tell you how to make something a lot like it! This goo will magically change form before your very eyes. You don’t need time or a laboratory for this one; like the tremendous teabag rocket, the test takes less than ten minutes. Furthermore, it uses entirely household materials, so won’t harm the environment!

WARNING: This is an extremely messy experiment, especially if there are any excited children involved. Make sure you’re wearing clothes you don’t mind getting stained!

The alien goo ingredients:

  • Some water
  • As much cornflour or cornstarch as you can acquire
  • Some food colouring – I used orange.
  • A bowl
  • A measuring jug
  • Some newspaper to cover any surfaces

The alien goo method:

1) Measure out some water – perhaps 100ml – and pour that into the bowl.

2) Dry the jug, then add four times that amount in cornflour to the water.

The image below shows a mix with far too little cornflour. The original blueprint I uncovered from the crashed spaceship recipe I found specified a ratio of one part water to two parts cornflour; I’d recommend at least four parts cornflour. You can always add more water to balance it out.

3) Add seven or eight drops of food colouring.

4) Mix it all together and let if flow!

“Alien goo” is… strange. You can pick it up like a solid, roll it up into balls and shapes, but the moment you suspend it in the air, it seems to “melt” like a liquid.

 

Be warned – siblings seek this stuff out like they can smell it. Perhaps they’re aliens too…

The alien goo science:

This “alien goo” is a “non-Newtonian fluid”. Isaac Newton, who calculated loads about gravity, made a “law”  – that’s a prediction about physics – that liquids will always behave in a certain way. But, naturally, we’ve discovered more since he lived 400 years ago. One of the things we’ve discovered is liquids that don’t follow that law he made – alien goo being one of them. And because they don’t do what Newton said, they’re non-Newton-ian fluids!

See Saturn (CosWatch Blog 8)24/07/2020

Welcome to the eighth of Fun Science‘s CosWatch blog posts, which you can read through with your young scientist and learn how to see Saturn.

What is CosWatch?

There’s so much to see in the night sky! You may have seen Brian Cox on TV describing the “wonders of the universe”, or Carl Sagan talking about the “awesome machinery of nature”, and they’re absolutely right. But while huge rockets and observatories can help, space isn’t just for people with expensive equipment. You can see amazing things from millions of miles away from your very own back garden. Each week, I’m going to talk about one of these incredible objects, and how you can find them.

This beautiful footage from Voyager 2 is a timelapse showing the probe’s approach to the Saturn.

This time, we’re going to be talking about how to see Saturn, the second-largest planet in the Solar System!

Tell me about Saturn

Saturn is the sixth planet from the Sun, and takes 29 years to orbit it. This makes sense; it’s further (and therefore has a greater distance to travel) than Jupiter, which takes 12 years, and much closer than Uranus, which takes 84 years. Like those two planets, it is a gas giant, meaning it is mostly made of gas. Also like those two, it has a short day of only ten hours and forty-two minutes.

“Saturn as seen from Mimas” by Chesley Bonestell is credited by some as inspiring the post-war appetite for space that fuelled the race to get the moon.

Saturn is most famous for its colossal rings. These rings aren’t solid objects as they may appear, but a collection of lots of tiny bits of ice, and a small amount of rocky material. These ice-lumps range from the scale of microns (smaller than a human hair) to metres (bigger than a car).

This image from NASA allows us to see Saturn in transit – that is to say, passing in front of the sun. This helps illustrate the size and majesty of its rings.

The Moons of Saturn

Some kids get all of the toys. As well as the biggest rings, Saturn has 82 moons, the most of any planet in our solar system. We discover them so quickly, only around 50 of them have names!

The most famous of these moons is Titan. Titan is a very exciting moon; much larger than ours, it’s the only other place in the solar system where we’ve found still bodies of liquid, which may be necessary for life. We’ve also landed a probe on its surface; the image to the right is really from the ground of Titan itself!

On the right, Titan from space. On the left, Titan from its surface.

There are of course many other moons of note. Pan, for instance, is shaped like a sherbert UFO sweetie. Methone, meanwhile, is shaped like a pebble.

On the left, the pebble shaped Methone. On the right, the sweetie-shaped Pan. Both from NASA.

Saturn has been observed since prehistoric times, and represents many different Gods in many different mythologies.

However, its rings and moons weren’t known about until much later. Galileo, who discovered four of Jupiter’s moons, observed Saturn in 1610. He thought the rings were two moons on either side of Saturn, and described them as “Saturn’s ears”; based on this sketch he drew, it’s easy to see why!

Phineas L. MacGuire Series | Book awards, Saturn, Children's books

How can I see Saturn?

As said, Saturn has been observed since ancient times, which means that it can easily be seen with the naked eye. Most modern telescopes will easily highlight the rings; if you’re lucky, you’ll see some moons too. You can buy special filters to observe more detail, but these aren’t necessary.

As ever, the website timeanddate.com is very helpful for this – using their “night sky” function, you can choose your location and planet, then simply test visibility for each of the nights. Currently, Saturn is hanging around “with” Jupiter in the South – though of course they’re over a billion miles apart in real life.

Saturn has inspired art, religion and scientific discovery for thousands of years, and will pretty much always be visible. I hope you enjoy observing it!

In conclusion:

  • Saturn is the magnificent sixth planet from the Sun, and the second gas giant.
  • It has huge rings made of tiny pieces of ice (and a little rock), and over 80 moons.
  • We have landed a probe on the surface of Titan, the largest of those moons.
  • Saturn has been observed since ancient times, but we only worked out it had rings about 400 years ago.
  • You can easily see Saturn with the naked eye, and its rings and moons with a telescope.

What’s next for CosWatch?

This is the last of the CosWatch blogs for now, but who knows what’s in store for the future? I hope you’ve been able to learn some interesting facts, and perhaps see some of these beautiful objects for yourself. I’ve been Electron Edward, and it has been a pleasure to share the delights of the cosmos with you.

Notes:

Fun Science recently created a “Planets and Space” home kit, pre-orderable now for only £5.00. Check it out here!

In this article I explain that a further a planet is from the Sun, the longer it takes, generally, to orbit it. This is briefly touching on Kepler’s laws of planetary motion; however, this is fairly complex maths, and you don’t need to focus on this until at least year 12.

Younger scientists, or older ones with good taste, may want to check out The Magic School Bus Lost in the Solar System in the (sadly late) Joanna Cole’s Magic School Bus series to help them remember and learn about the different planets – though note that this book has Pluto classified as a planet, which is of course out of date..

11 reasons we haven’t found aliens22/07/2020

It’s one of the first big questions someone learning about space, especially a young scientist, will ask: Why haven’t aliens visited?

This article contains a lot of speculation based on the ideas of leading scientists. At any time, we could discover a new scientific fact or idea that will completely change the whole way we think about the cosmos. However, this is a summary of the most popular ideas so far.

Why do we think aliens would exist?

This is a good starting question. The reason many scientists think aliens – that is to say, life like the animals on Earth, but on other planets – must exist is because of probability. Even if they’re extremely rare, the universe is so big, and there are so many planets like the Earth, that it seems reasonable to assume that extra-terrestrial (alien) life will have evolved somewhere. In fact, if the universe is infinite, then they must have!

Aliens may have evolved like animals – alive and complex, but not advanced enough to try contacting our planet. When we talk about aliens that we think are like us, we describe them as “intelligent life”.

We don’t think aliens exist in our solar system – we’ve explored our planets quite closely, and haven’t found a shred of evidence. While it’s possible we may discover something unexpected, most scientists work off of the assumption that we need to look elsewhere for our neighbours.

How would intelligent life contact us?

There are a number of ways that aliens might get in touch with the human race. They could visit Earth in spaceships, much like in movies.

Or, if they’re anything like us, they might send space probes, just as we have sent rovers to Mars or satellites to Jupiter and Saturn. There are a couple of types they might use. A “Von Neumann” probe uses resources it finds to replicate itself – in a few years you might have a whole flock of them reproducing across a solar system. A “Bracewell” probe, meanwhile, is sent out into space and designed to talk to aliens on behalf of whoever designed it.

The Voyager 2 probe from Earth took forty years to leave our solar system; it’s a long way from discovering any new worlds yet.

Alternatively, they may try to get in touch by sending radio signals. The important thing to remember is that space is big; even if aliens orbited the closest star to us, and travelled at the fastest speed allowed by physics, it would still take them four years to reach us.

For that reason, they may try to send us a radio signal instead. An alien civilization wouldn’t really be able to gain anything from sending us a radio signal. It’s just a way to say “hello!” to us from a huge distance. They may try to describe themselves, or share some of their knowledge or history, depending how complex the signal is.

The “Very Large Array” in New Mexico.

The organisation SETI (Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence) exists for this reason. They listen out for signals from space using huge satellite dishes. Occasionally, they send out signals from Earth too – us saying “hello!” to anyone who might be listening. We haven’t heard anything yet, but who knows what the future may bring?

The Fermi Paradox, and its solutions:

Italian-American physicist Enrico Fermi pointed this out in the 1950s. There are half a trillion stars in our galaxy alone, and billions of galaxies with similar numbers of stars throughout the universe. Many of these stars have planets that would be suitable for aliens to live on; water, a good temperature, a similar size, and so on. So why haven’t they got in touch?

There are a number of possible solutions that have been put forward over the years:

They might not be clever enough

It may be the case that even though alien animals evolve in many places, none become intelligent enough to build things like radio telescopes; or even if they have, they simply haven’t thought of the idea yet.

Alternatively, we might not be clever enough. After all, we’re assuming that aliens will try to contact us using radio signals. However, they might have discovered a new way to communicate across the universe – and assume we’re using that too.

They might not be loud enough

The reason we think we should be able to hear alien civilizations is because we use radio signals, which leak out into space. We think they probably use the same. However, as a species, we have been moving towards other, “less leaky” ways of talking to each other, such as fibre optic cables. Perhaps aliens have been doing the same, so very little noise is coming from them; imagine trying to work out what song someone was listening to if they were using headphones across the street.

They might not have enough resources

There are many times when we have discovered a new barrier to exploration of space – for instance, the speed of light. It may be that we have simply underestimated the amount of material it takes to effectively get in touch with another world, a bit like not having enough credit on your phone to call your parents.

Theoretical models for launching Von Neumann probes involve mining Mercury, shown in this image from Space.com, for resources. Perhaps alien civilizations don’t have planets like Mercury at their disposal.

They might have been destroyed by natural disaster

The human race is bombarded by floods, earthquakes, tornadoes and hurricanes every day. It’s possible that aliens have been wiped out by natural disaster – or even destroyed by a meteor, like the dinosaurs.

They might have been destroyed by themselves

Nuclear war, demonstrated in this image by a mushroom cloud, is one of the more dramatic events that might lead to a species’ extinction.

Some thinkers have proposed that aliens might be doomed to destroy themselves when they reach a certain level of advancement; and with climate change, nuclear weapons, and discrimination on our own planet, you can see why. Don’t panic, though – it’s equally possible that that isn’t true, and that alien species live for an extremely long time!

They might live underwater

Despite so much of our planet being water, our planet’s 32% landmass could theoretically be unusually large. Perhaps on other planets, it’s usual for more or less the entire surface to be covered in water, and aliens haven’t developed features that suit space travel, such as hands and large brains.

Alternatively, perhaps alien intelligent mostly occupies subsurface oceans, such as those theorised to exist under the icy surface of Europa. Radio signals would struggle to escape these surfaces, and civilizations would effectively be invisible. They would, however, be largely protected from impacts and stellar radiation.

Jupiter’s moon Europa is theorised to have subsurface oceans. Though we’re sure that life like ours doesn’t exist there, it’s possible single-celled organisms or even small animals have managed to evolve under the protection of the ice!

They might live on too big a planet

It’s already difficult to accumulate enough power to get off of Earth. If aliens live on a bigger planet, they might not be able to escape its larger gravity. That wouldn’t prevent them from sending radio signals, but it would mean they couldn’t travel in a spaceship or send a space probe.

They might have deliberately left us alone

The “zoo hypothesis” is the idea that aliens have left us alone on purpose. It’s like how when people explore other countries, they are asked to leave the animals alone, and not interfere in their ecosystems. However, it would only take one species of many to change their mind for this to break down, so this seems unlikely.

They might just not want to meet us

We assume that because we want to contact aliens, they’ll want to contact us. But perhaps they don’t like other planets as part of their culture. Perhaps they don’t want to colonize or explore elsewhere in the way that we do. Perhaps they don’t even have scientific curiosity.

We might be too young

We’ve only been broadcasting radio signals since the very end of the 1800s. We might not have made enough of an impact on the universe to be detected yet; we’ve done the cosmic equivalent of clearing out throats before the speech begins.

We might be extremely rare

This is Professor Brian Cox’s theory, and one I find convincing. The process of evolution is extremely complex, and to some extent relies on chance. For that reason, intelligent life developing in the way we did may be extremely unlikely; perhaps as little as one-per-galaxy. While there may be the slim chance of picking up on communication from them, we’d never be able to visit due to the literally astronomical distances involved – it would take many millions of years at the very least.

So which is the answer?

All of the ideas here necessarily make a huge number of assumptions about the way an aliens species would communicate, operate, and evolve. With no evidence available to tell us about aliens or their absence, we cannot be sure why we haven’t met aliens yet. If they don’t exist, that’s a reminder how special life on Earth is. If they do, it would be extremely exciting to communicate with them and perhaps learn more about the cosmos.

Either way, the very idea of aliens means that we should always try to keep learning, whether to protect our own species or discover new ones.

Speedy experiment – nervous coins22/07/2020

Your pocket money is alive! Well, sort of. Well, not really. But your coins will certainly seem alive after this experiment. You don’t need time or a laboratory for this one; like the tremendous teabag rocket, the test takes less than ten minutes. Furthermore, it uses entirely household materials, so won’t harm the environment!

You will need:

  • An old bottle – I used an old wine bottle; if your parents don’t have one of those about, you can use any any tall glass container
  • Coins – I tested two, but aim for multiple sizes (as long as one is large enough to cover the mouth of the bottle)
  • Some water
  • Access to a freezer

The method:

1) Remove the bottle cap, and place the empty bottle in the freezer.

2) While you’re waiting (at least five minutes), immerse your coins in water.

3) Remove the bottle from the freezer, and place one of the coins on top.

The coin should jump around and make strange clicking noises, like some sort of especially nervous robot. Try testing with other sizes of coin. Does it work if the coin doesn’t cover the entirety of the hole? What about with different coin materials? Do you have any coins from other countries that you could test?

The science:

As the helpful diagram below shows us, hot air rises.

Warm-Up: Why does hot air rise and cold air fall downward ...

On top of that, it also takes up a larger volume of space than cool air. This means that if you put cool air inside a container – for example, a recycled bottle – it will try to escape as it warms up.

When you take the uncapped bottle out of the freezer, the air inside the bottle begins to warm up, rising and expanding. The coin on top moves simply because the new larger air is pushing past it.

So, no, as far as we know, coins aren’t sentient. But they can jump about when air warms up behind them, and that is very fun to watch.

The BIG EXPERIMENT results!14/07/2020

You dunked. And you dunked. And you dunked, and dunked, and dunked…

In our big experiment, we asked young scientists and their parents across the country to dunk three types of branded biscuit. With this data, we’ve been able to work out which is the most dunkable. But who was the winner? Let’s take a look…