Thursday, 11 September 2008

Boooom!

Had you going. No, the earth has not fallen into a black hole due to activities in Switzerland, but geeks all over blogland have been squeaking in excitement (yes Lesley and Emma, I'm looking at you). It's actually a relief to discover other people as nerdy as I am.

Anyway, to celebrate, the little cookies and I planned to build a Large Hadron Collider in the cupboard under the stairs, but we didn't have enough toilet roll tubes, and besides, I'm not sure I want to come face to face with Higgs boson when I'm reaching for the hoover. We couldn't let the day go unmarked without any physics experiments at all, so we fell back on this fun one which shows them the effects of air pressure (and gets them giggling too).

All you need is some stiffish paper (hello cover of Boden catalogue - receycling in action, huzzah!), a bendy straw, some sticky tape, some blutack, a little bit of foil and some stickers or pens.

Cut out a circle of paper (10-15cm diameter), cut a slit from one edge to the middle and fold it into a wide cone. Decorate it (this is nominally a craft blog after all.)


Cut a small hole in the tip of the cone and poke through the short end of the straw. Trim off the other end of the straw unless you have superhuman lung capacity. Use blutack to seal the straw into the cone.


Scrunch up the foil into a little ball - this is where you need to experiment a bit- if it's too big the littlies can't blow hard enough to lift it up.

Apply to the lips and PUFF!


Have you any idea how hard this was to photograph?
It took me about 80 photos to get this one
. Poor Tall Small nearly passed out!

32 comments:

  1. Aaah! the fun you can have with such simple things. I love these little experiments. Are you planning to build a Hadron collider any time in the near future? It's a fascinating thought - my son has been obsessed by it all. He loves astronomy, so the BIG bang means something to him and this coupled with the ideas and theories he's been hearing in the media and from school means he's well and truly hooked. Wonder if he'd like to try this?......I would.

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  2. Brilliant! I love your little "craft blog" concession to the science geekiness!!!

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  3. I am very impressed by the perserverance that you showed to take that amazing photo.

    (how many toilet rolls does it take to make the 27km of tunnel required to collide protons?)

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  4. For the most part I don't know what you're talking about. But the pictures explain all - well done on capturing the moment! My children will have fun with this.

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  5. No2 came in from school yesterday with the comment "you're not dead then..." after the Swiss shenanigans. Charming!

    I'm filing away all your fun stuff with experiments to impress my tutors with when I start my science module...I will give you full credit, of course!

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  6. gosh is your cupboard under the stairs 27km long, that's impressive! be hard to find the things at the back though ....

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  7. We built the collider in our shed on the weekend. Pr C-W and D/Boy riding their bikes in opp. directions until sufficient speed was built up and then WHAMMO! Higgs-Bose all over the place.

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  8. If i can recover from the side splitting laughter that ensued from reading about the photo shoot..we're going to do this!
    I didn't think the world would end yesterday but the 7yr old came home from school in tears, sobbing, someone had told her her school trip was cancelled because the world was finishing on oct 21st. she wasn't worried about the world(!) just her trip to a castle!

    It was a yr6 know it all who was playing the part of nostradamus apparently! the teachers had a LOT of complaints of terrified 7yr olds. If i knew who he was i'd shove one of those straws somewhere!

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  9. Well, dang -- I gave up watching/reading the news ages ago (it makes these election years quite peaceful and lovely) and so didn't even have a chance to get excited about the End of the World. Maybe next time. (Loved your photos and hope Little Tall Small has recovered.)

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  10. Great idea (yet again!). Please can you put all of these wonderful ways of keeping children amused (and adults) into a book? You'd make a fortune!
    Cathy X

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  11. It might have taken 80 shots, but it's a blinkin' brilliant photo! Perfect action shot.

    That's a great rainy afternoon activity that will amuse No.2. No.1 has now reached the age when such fun is deemed 'uncool'. I am rolling my eyes at this phase. A lot.

    x

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  12. Hurray for the blog geeks! That last photo is fantastic. I remember plastic versions of this in crackers at Christmas time - the tubey bit was in the shape of the pipe.

    Boson? That's a great word.

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  13. I am just so impressed that you chose to commemorate Big Bang Day by staging some rather impressive experiments of your own.

    30 Geek Points to DC :)

    xxx

    p.s. Trashy's comment has made me cry with mirth.

    50 Geek points go to Trashy for recreating the elusive Higgs boson

    20 bonus Geek points to Silverpebble for generally being very excited about science and for naming my moth.

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  14. oh what a priceless post - and the comments - well i was laughing so much tears were streaming down my face - just what i needed!!!! brilliant pic and well worth trying for!

    xx

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  15. Gosh, we're missing all the excitement on the other side of the pond! Fabulous photography skills. Thank goodness for digital!

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  16. Well done great idea. So I haven't actually fallen into a black hole it is just that I didn't pay the electricity bill.

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  17. And there's another little project to incude in your book!

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  18. SO FUNNY!
    GREAT PHOTOS!!
    AND THANKS FOR SHARING!!!
    KISSES
    DEBBIE MOSS

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  19. Oh yes, on Wednesday morning my little ones awoke to ask me had they slept through the day because if they had then it was over and the world hadn't ended... I haven't the heart to tell them that the real bangs won't start for a month or two, so it just might happen before Christmas....

    And, talking of being a nerd, Liverpool had a science convention this week, so I got a picture of the Atlas machine which I am currently wondering about putting up in the kitchen... my own personal Hadron Colliding space. (Although under the stairs sounds good, and I'm sure you must have enough toilet roll insides by now....)

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  20. I'm thinking that the people in my house just aren't taking my blog seriously enough. They don't even stick around for 8 photos, let alone 80...

    The annoying thing is that I read about the end of the world months ago, then hadn't had time to pick up a newspaper this week. My final day could have been spent chipping off old paint...

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  21. You see I knew you would be up to something special!!! So very impressed!!!
    Kimx

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  22. I feel so shamed that you marked the day with a crafty physics experiment and I spent the day looking up articles because I didn't know what this LHC Higgs boson thing was that everyone was going on about.

    (I do now)

    Tall Small will be very good at breathalysers when he grows up.

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  23. *She* grows up, Tall Small is a girl.

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  24. Mostly over my head but very impressed by the little experiment..we'll have to do it too..great photography skill too :D

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  25. wow I love that photo well done for getting such a great shot and also well done to Tall small too!! \z

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  26. That's right- put some stickers on it and call it craft! That is some very exciting geekery and would probably explain why Lesley feels the need to set up the league table :D

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  27. You might have taken all those photos but it was worth it, your photo is brilliant. I love the experiment too. Em came home on the night before LHC switch on with the story of the world ending! so we sat at the computer and looked it all up and read all about it and felt reassured. Next morning about 10am both of us had the same thought "ooh everything's alright, or else we are in an alternate dimension and didn't feel a thing!" Jane x

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  28. Very cute and fun....and how scientific of you ;o) I must say though, the stuff happening in Switerland had me a bit spooked! We're just back from holidays and not getting over jet lag...LOL! Happy Days ((HUGS))

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  29. ah!! superb! You're brilliant Val.

    My son came home from school and said his teacher told him about some scientists building 'a black hole that could swallow us whole', but he wasn't worried.

    Maybe I should?

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  30. I'll have to give this one a go. I think Mr Earplugs and Nipper will have fun. Love your improvised Lelli Kelly's - £40 a pop - heavens!

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