Thursday, September 18, 2014

Messy Science: Egg Drop (and free printable)


I am teaching a Messy Science class at our homeschool co-op.  It's been fun to prepare and the children have enjoyed it,  so I want to share my ideas with you in case you find yourself in need of a messy science project one day.  That happens to other people, right?

Our first project was an Egg Drop.

Object
Create a capsule to protect your egg and allow it to remain unharmed when dropped from a great height.

Supplies

  • 2-3 eggs per child
  • duct tape or packing tape
  • misc. recyclables: bubble wrap, boxes, packing peanuts, toilet paper tubes, newspaper, egg cartons, etc
  • scissors
  • tarp/garbage bags
  • stool/ladder to drop eggs from
  • chart to record data (optional, available below)
  • access to a hose (optional but very helpful)



Each child in the class brought 2-3 eggs as well as whatever recycables they wanted to bring. This co-op class is aimed at 4-7 year olds, so I keep it pretty simple and allow plenty of time for them to figure things out.  Moms stay and lend a hand, which is so, so helpful.

We read  a silly book and then got right to work.


We let the kids go to town, using whatever materials they thought would best protect their egg.  Each child made a capsule for one egg and then dropped the egg while standing on a stool. We recorded the data on a chart (simple printable version available below).  Then the kids went back to the drawing board, tried to fix the problems they experienced and worked on creating a new and improved capsule.

Proud kiddos with their egg-protecting capsules.

It was very important to me that the kids to most, if not all, of the work themselves.  It was so fun to wander around the group while they were working and talk to each child about their hypothesis of what makes the egg safe.



It's egg-dropping time!
Because these budding scientists are young we dropped the eggs from the great height of a stool. With a group of older children you could drop them from a ladder or even off a building.


Afterword we all cleaned up and that was that.  The whole project, including clean up, took about an hour and it kept a wide range of kids interested for the entire time.   It was a blast!

Clean-up was pretty intense.

Click here to print a simple chart to track your egg-drop results.


What is your favorite messy science project?

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