Help Build Science Skills: Merry-Go-Round Spring Toy

This simple activity demonstrates how energy stored in a rubber band results in a spinning toy.

What this activity will develop:
Science skills

What you'll need:
• Large thread spool
• Cotton swab or Popsicle stick
• Rubber band
• Paper clip
• Small metal washer
• Construction paper
• Thread

Setting up:
Hook the rubber band onto the paper clip.

Thread the rubber band through the hole in the thread spool. Holding on to the rubber band at the top of the spool, place the paper clip flat against the bottom of the spool.

At the top of the spool, push the rubber band through the washer. Insert the cotton swab or Popsicle stick through the rubber-band loop.

Cut two small animal shapes from the construction paper.

Make a pinhole in the top of each shape. Push a short length of thread through each hole, and tie the animals to the end of the swab or stick.

What to do:
Use your finger to wind the swab or stick until the rubber band feels tight.

Release it, and watch the merry-go-round turn.

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