Making: J for Jet

Heylo…we’re back with Wordcraft!  And to make up for the lack of Wordcraft posts in the past few weeks, here are two J activities to try out for this week.
One today, one tomorrow…

You will need the following materials: Balloon, thread or string, straw, cellophane tape, scissors, marker, Ikea sealing clip (optional).

1. Inflate the balloon. Seal it with an Ikea plastic sealing clip to prevent the air from escaping.

2. Cut a short length of straw and attach it to the balloon’s mouthpiece with cellophane tape.

3. Have your child spell and write the letters J  E  T onto the balloon.

4. Cut another short length of straw, and attach the balloon to this straw with cellophane tape.

5. Thread a string through the straw and tie each end of the string to different points across the room, e.g. one end to the window frame, and the other end to a door knob.

6. Release the sealing clip. Your balloon jet should propel itself along the string.

Some Lessons Learnt from our experiment:

  • The string should be setup in a straight line, i.e. try to avoid stringing it at an angle from points A to B, as the sharper the angle, the harder it is for the balloon to propel forward.
  • Attaching a straw to the mouthpiece of the balloon helps control the direction the balloon travels. Initially we did not do this and while the propulsion was really fast, it was also uncontrolled. So our balloon travelled in a loop and it was all over too quickly. However, having better control over the direction also resulted in a slower speed.
  • The idea to use the sealing clip came up when we found it troublesome trying to fix up string and cellophane tape while holding onto the balloon mouthpiece.

Have fun! 🙂


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2 responses to “Making: J for Jet”

  1. Ruth says :

    this sure looks like fun! thanks for sharing this!

    • iwonderbee says :

      Haha, yeah it was. We (the adults) had a barrel of laughs in the 20 minutes it took, trying to figure out the conditions under which the jet propulsion would work best…and joking that we’d never be able to give up our day jobs to become science teachers!

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