Magnet Mania! featuring the Rattlesnake Eggs, Magnetite, & Floating Magnets
Buzzing Stunt Magnets (also known as Rattlesnake Eggs) are two finely polished, high powered, oval shaped magnets. These super strong magnets are a ton of fun and you can do a lot of cool stunts with them. Toss them, spin them, listen to their buzz, have them attract through your hand! Naturally magnetic Magnetite Lodestone Rock attracts to magnets. What better tools to grab their attention!
Now let the Magnet madness commence!
Show the kids a Bell and ask "What is it made of? Wood? Plastic? Metal? Yes it is Metal! Then hold up a tin pan. What is this made of? These are both metals and share many similar properties such as color. Now grab a magnet and show how one can stick to it and the other does not. But Why? Let's explore...
First let's have some fun! Depending on the size of your tin pan (I used 8 x 8 inch pan) I cut white paper with 6 x 6 inch measurements to lay inside. With any color washable paint put a drop of each color and finally drop in the bell. Now with the other hand holding a magnet wand underneath the pan. Don't have a magnet wand? I had to make extras using a magnet hot-glued to a wide tongue depressor. Be sure to tell them that the wand never goes inside the pan, only the bottom. As the two attract through the tin practice some motions as they run the bell through the plate. Go in zigzag, circle, practice shapes, writing name, until desired magnet art is created. Put aside to dry.
Next prep ahead a Water Bottle with about an inch of liquid water poured out and various objects: I used plastic buttons, styrofoam beads, a penny, paperclips, wooden beads. You can add screws/nails, cork, or any household objects. Have them predict what might be pulled by the magnetic force of the magnet. Provide each child with a capped bottle and a magnet or wand. Let them explore the objects that stick to their magnet from the outside of the bottle.
So what stuck? The magnet would have pulled only the paperclips because they are made from one of the three metals that attract to a magnet: steel, stainless steel, or iron. No wonder it wouldn't attract to the foil pan or the penny.
Put a paper clip on the magnet/wand and then try to make a chain with another paper clip touching the first. Continue to see how many paperclips can be chained together! Magnets are capable to make metal objects magnetic, too!
Explore through putting two magnet wands together. What is happening? One way they attract and stick together, the other way they resist or repel each other. A magnet both produces its own magnetic field and responds to magnetic fields. The strength of the magnetic field it produces is at any given point proportional to the magnitude of its magnetic moment.
Let's explore this more with the floating ring magnets, setup is easy. The basic idea is to make a magnet float by holding it up with the repelling force from another magnet. Magnets can repel each other with enough force. The floating magnet is acheived when the same poles are placed together. The pencil stabilizes the magnets to stay above each other. Continue this pattern of the same magnetic poles. When the opposite (north and south/positive and negative) poles are facing each other the magnets attract.
Finally a good picture book to accompany this class is Magnet Max. Do you have a child that runs for the hills the moment you want to read a book? I don't usually have any that are that recognizable in class, but just in case there is one that will squirm and shout when I am reading giving them something to do has been key during the read aloud. In this class, I bought various Picture Cards with iron filings that they can move around to add "hair" to the image. When I say switch (after reading 2 pages) they have to give the card to someone else. Take the time to show (with a ring magnet or magnet wand) how the iron filings stand up and appear to look like spikes from the back of the card! The ring/wand magnet is much stronger that the tiny magnet provided.
This class made learning the basics of magnetic forces so much fun!
Rattlesnake Eggs Magnets, GyroWheels, and NEW Magnetite Lodestone are all available at the Science Shop. Get all 3 plus Color-changing Green Glux Putty in the next Satchel of Science. Any amateur astrophysicist will take an imaginary trip to outerspace to collect real and faux specimens and explore the forces of magnetism! This collection is available in the handstamped drawstring bag from 2/21/20 to 3/20/20. Order yours now. First deliveries occur the first week of March 2020.
Pick up the new Floating Magnets, too in the Science Shop!
For the month of March take a Science Experience Class at these following locations:
DROP-INS are Welcome:
Sylvia's Clubhouse ($5/class admission is BOGO! Use this offer 1 of 3 ways: 2 for 1 Children, 2 for 1 Classes, or 1 Class + a Goodie Bag) Tuesday 3/3 at 11 AM
Littlest Trunk ($5/class) Wednesday 3/11 1:30 PM
Tribe Seminole Heights ($5/class goes directly to community center) Wednesday 3/4, 3/11, 3/25 4:00 PM
Little Explorers ($5/class) Thursday 3/5 3:15 PM