Saturday, January 19, 2013

A fountain: water, plastic bottle and balloon

This experimant was such a fun experience for Santino! Oh, he loved watching the water flow from the straw, he loved how the balloon got smaller when the air escaped, and how the straw produced funny spitting noises as the water level would get too low. He couldn't get enough and continued with it in the bath.

I can't believe it took me almost a month to write about this experiment. I found the idea here. There is even an explanation how it works and why. I followed the instructions, and everything worked!

To make such a fountain, you will need: an empty plastic bottle, a balloon, a straw, a bucket and some duct tape. Make a small hole in the bottle, slide through the straw, and seal it with the duct tape, or blue tac.

I did start this experiment with a little show of blowing up the balloon and letting the air out, which wasn't anything new for Santino, as we've played like this many times, he loves it! I explained that mommy blows the air inside the balloon, and then the air comes out. When the air comes out, it can push Santino's hair, or a napkin from the surface of the table.

Then I filled up the bottle with water and a little food coloring, positioned the straw, so that it would be looking upwards. The water was just reaching the level of the straw. Then I put the blown balloon on top of the bottle. The air started escaping  and the water started flowing from the straw and into the bucket! Yay! I explained, that the air is pushing the water out.

Santino was mesmerized. "More, more please!"

I set up this experiment after dinner. First, I positioned it a little bit farther away from Santino, who just doesn't have the patience to watch new stuff, he needs to touch everything right away.

After a few times the water in the bottle ran out and the straw did its spitting routine and all, Santino kept asking "more, please!" (he is so courteous now; i spent months and months trying to teach him how to say "please" and "thank you", and at the nursery school they did it within 2 visits), I moved the installation closer to him, so that he could touch it. He loved moving the straw, enjoyed watching the water stopping and starting, depending on whether the straw was up or down.


He was clearly tired after a long day, but wanted to continue experimenting in the bath, doing what the balloons were supposed to do - blow air. I kinda ran out of balloons, as they ripped after a few times of putting them on the bottle neck, but he did a great job! He moved the bottle up and down a little, kept adding more water and then blowing it out.

This was a fun fun activity. I would definitely recommend it!