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Turning the Air Upside Down: Spinning Snakes


Source Institutions

    Integrated Teaching and Learning Program, College of Engineering, University of Colorado at Boulder

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Turning the Air Upside Down: Spinning Snakes

Learners color and cut out a spiral-shaped snake. When they hang their snake over a radiator, the snake spins. This is because the heated air is less dense and rises, pushing against the snake and causing it to spin. This is one of three demonstrations investigating convection currents and their effects on weather and air pollution. Resource contains vocabulary definitions and suggestions for assessment, extensions, and scaling for different levels of learners.

Quick Guide


Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
10 to 30 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
free

Age Range:
Ages 8 - 14

Resource Types:
Activity, Demonstration

Language:
English

Materials List (per student)


Subjects


  • Earth and Space Science
    • Earth Processes
      • Weather and Climate
    • Earth Structure
      • Atmosphere
  • Engineering and Technology
    • Engineering
      • Civil Engineering
      • Environmental Engineering
  • Life Sciences
    • Ecology
      • Human Impact
  • Physical Sciences
    • Motion and Forces
    • States of Matter
      • Gases
    • Structure and Properties of Matter
      • Mass and Weight
      • Volume and Density

Audience


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities

Other


Includes alignment to state and/or national standards

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access

By:

  • Kolenbrander, Amy; Yowell, Janet; Mach, Natalie; Schaefer Zarske, Malinda; Carlson, Denise; Kotys-Schwartz, Daria

Source Collection:

  • TeachEngineering

Rights:

  • All Rights Reserved, Regents of the University of Colorado, ©2004

Funding Sources:

  • Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE)
  • U.S. Department of Education
  • National Science Foundation, 0226322

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