Rocket Balloons and Zooooooming Paper Airplanes

This week we have been looking at “forces” and “motion”.  As part of our science project to demonstrate Potential and Kinetic energy we made a brilliant paper airplane…

Zooming Paper Airplanes

All you need it some stiff paper (or thin card!) fold it into an airplane then on the underside using a hole punch, punch one hole and tie an elastic band through it… next either using a pencil to hook through the elastic band or your finger pull the airplane back and release – watch the airplane zoom through the sky!  Simple but brilliant 🙂

paper airplanesThe stretched rubber band is full of energy (potential energy!).  When the rubber band is released it rapidly resumes it’s natural shape and releases energy (kinetic energy) and propels the plane forwards.

Rocket Balloons

The next little experiment is super fun (great to do out doors or inside if the weather is horrid!)

What You Need

A long Balloon
Strong Thread
Two Chairs
A drinking Straw
Sticky Tape
A Large Clip

How to do it 

Cut yourself about 3 meters (10ft) of the strong thread, tie one end to one chair and then on the untied end thread your drinking straw through and tie the thread to the other chair.  Next blow you balloon up and twist (don’t tie off) the end – fasten with a large clip of clothes peg.  Now fix the balloon to the underside of the straw using your sticky tape.  Pull the balloon along to one end of the thread.

Rocket Balloon

Now for the fun part – get your little one to quickly release the balloon by removing the clip and watch what happens 🙂

Now for the science bit 😉 – The air in the balloon wants to escape – as soon as the clip is released the air is forced out and the balloon is forced in the opposite direction!

On one of my many trawls through the internet to find information that would help reinforce what I am teaching Livvy I came across a fabulous game that really gets the child to think about “forces”.  Its is aimed at children between the ages of 5 and 7 so I sat with Livvy and we worked through it together….here is the link if you want to have a wee look 🙂


Both of these fab experiments are taken (yes you guessed it!) from my Usborne Big Book Of Science Things To Make And Do


3 responses to “Rocket Balloons and Zooooooming Paper Airplanes

  1. Your post and photos bring a smile to my face thinking of my girls! I’m looking forward to getting my MaggieMooseTracks children’s book series up and running! Your daughter must have a MaggieMooseTracks book! 🙂 🙂

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