Are you ready for a cool and creative science project that requires nothing more than a few simple household materials?
Simply gather a large plastic ice cream bucket (or an old plastic paint bucket or pail), clear plastic wrap from the dry cleaner (or food wrap), an elastic band or two, a source of warm water, a knife [adult assistance required!], a magic marker and some fun objects like twigs, leaves, stones, coins or buttons.
- Go and get your plastic bucket.
- Using your magic marker, draw three circles around the outside of the bucket.
- Be sure to draw the circles about an 1" from the bottom.
- Now, with adult assistance, cut the circles out using a knife. The openings should be large enough for you to put your hand through.
- Cut a piece of clear plastic wrap a few inches larger than the top of the bucket opening. Drape the plastic wrap loosely over the opening of the bucket and secure it with an elastic band. If the elastic is too small, take and cut two elastic bands and tie them together.
- Now its time to pour warm water onto the plastic wrap.
- You are now ready to place objects into the holes you cut earlier.
- Look straight down through the water and the plastic wrap - what do you see?
Did you know...
You just made a magnifying glass. By adding water to plastic wrap, you and your students and kids created a lens that you can use to make small objects appear larger! You can change the amount of magnification by using more or less water, using a smaller or larger pail or by using liquids other than water.
Now you know.
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Lesson: Andrea Mulder-Slater
Illustration: Geoff Slater