Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Creating a mini water cycle

At the start of this week, we started learning about water. We brainstormed what they wanted to learn about on this theme over the next few weeks and decided to start with the water cycle. There are so many different resources on the internet and in the library to help us learn about this: they read some, watched some YouTube and BBC bite-size clips and completed a diagram. 

Then we decided to get a bit more "hands on" and create our own mini water cycles. How could we actually see the evaporation, condensation and precipitation in action?  Could we recreate the water cycle? Bear in mind that a fair few of our science experiments don't work as we expect them to; although a large fun part of the learning is to figure out what has gone differently than the outcome we had predicted to happen!

We gathered together a large jug, a small cup, cling-film and sellotape.

They then poured some water into the jug or bowl until it was about a quarter full.
They placed the empty cup carefully into the jug, being careful not to get any of the water into it.

A piece of cling-film was then stretched over the jug and sealed all the way around with sellotape. 

The jugs were then placed in the sunshine outside. The aim was to heat the water naturally and gradually. However, the sunshine was rapidly replaced with rain, so we placed the jugs in a warm cupboard instead. 

After a couple of hours we took the jugs out of the warmth. We could see that condensation had formed on the cling-film. The children then rather reluctantly went to bed, rather than watching the jugs all night!

In the morning, they raced downstairs to the jugs and we could see drops of water had formed under the cling-film. Over the course of the morning, the water dripped into the cups, until it was about 0.5cm deep.

Success!! A great, simple experiment to try out; loads of learning, loads of anticipation and huge fun.

For more ideas on "water" you can take a look at my Pinterest board.

My Pinterest link

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