Science turns weather cloudy with a chance of cocktails

thisisoxfordshire: awesome: Archie, left, and Matilda Bearchell learn the science behind clouds at the Jack and the Beanstalk-inspired science show awesome: Archie, left, and Matilda Bearchell learn the science behind clouds at the Jack and the Beanstalk-inspired science show

THESE young scientists made their own clouds out of vodka at a show about the science behind Jack and the Beanstalk.

Archie and Matilda Bearchell, aged four and eight, went to the event at West Oxfordshire Community Centre because their mum, Dr Sarah Bearchell, was running the show.

The audience also learnt that in order for a beanstalk to grow tall enough to reach into the clouds, it would be so wide it would take 13 schoolchildren to surround it.

Dr Bearchell, who presented the show on Friday for Science Oxford Live, said: “It was all very messy, with lots of kids getting excited about science.”

The group made clouds by pouring a small amount of vodka into a plastic bottle, then increasing the pressure using a tyre pump.

When the pressure is suddenly released, the vodka is vapourised, forming a cloud.

Children also got to make their own butter by shaking cream very vigorously, and got to set fire to a fake million pound note made out of magicians’ flash paper.

Garsington Primary School pupil Matilda said: “It was really good. My favourite bit was setting fire to the million pound note because it looked nice.”

For more, see facebook.com/sarahbearchellscience

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2:04pm Wed 8 Jan 14

Sarah Bearchell says...

A circle made up of 13 children from Year 3 holding hands with their arms outstretched would be the same size as a runner bean which had managed to get 1000m up into the sky. However, this would be very weak and couldn't make it to the clouds unsupported. I spoke to the lovely people at Forestry Research (Forestry Commission) when I was preparing for the show. I asked them how wide the beanstalk would have to be to reach the 1000m without support. They took their scientific knowledge about tree growth, suspended their disbelief about magical beanstalks, and came up with a circumference of 126m - or about 106 Year 3 children holding hands. That's 40m diameter!
A circle made up of 13 children from Year 3 holding hands with their arms outstretched would be the same size as a runner bean which had managed to get 1000m up into the sky. However, this would be very weak and couldn't make it to the clouds unsupported. I spoke to the lovely people at Forestry Research (Forestry Commission) when I was preparing for the show. I asked them how wide the beanstalk would have to be to reach the 1000m without support. They took their scientific knowledge about tree growth, suspended their disbelief about magical beanstalks, and came up with a circumference of 126m - or about 106 Year 3 children holding hands. That's 40m diameter! Sarah Bearchell
  • Score: -23

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