Each year, British Science Week celebrates all things science along with technology, engineering and maths. This year, the annual event will take place from the 5th-14th March with the theme ‘Innovating for the future’.
Science is all about innovation and working to create a better future for all, so whether your children are at home or at school, it’s important to get them involved.
If your kids are at home why not treat it like a game and get their thinking caps on by asking them which machine they would like to invent and why. Ask them to jot their ideas down, whether that’s using words, drawings or even making something. Next, ask them exactly what it is they want their invention to do and how it will do this, as this will get them talking about the science, technology, engineering and maths behind their idea. And who knows, they may have just come up with the next big scientific breakthrough!
If their invention is a bit out there and you don’t have the materials for them to create it, we’ve picked some of our favourite alternative experiments from the Science Museum website for them to try, which are equally just as fun and easy to do!
Learn about density by making your own Lava Lamp
A clean plastic bottle, try to use one with smooth sides
Fizzy vitamin tablet
1. Use the funnel to pour water into a clean bottle until it is one-third full. Add a few drops of red food colouring.
2.Fill the rest of the bottle with vegetable oil.
3.Break the vitamin tablet in half and add it to the bottle. Watch the lava bubbles!
How it works:
This lava lamp effect works for two reasons. The first is that oil and water don’t mix. This is because water molecules are attracted to each other but not to oil. The other reason is because of density, which is how compact a substance is. Water is denser than oil, so the oil layer stays on top. The vitamin tablet falls through the oil, and when it reacts with the water it produces bubbles of carbon dioxide gas. This gas floats to the surface because it is less dense than both the water and the oil, carrying some coloured water with it. When the bubbles pop, the gas is released, and the denser water sinks back down again.