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Pressure

Bernoulli Lost His Marbles

Al Bartlett, University of Colorado

Fill a one-litre graduated cylinder with water; the cylinder should be about 5 to 8 cm in diameter and 30 to 40 cm tall. Take an ordinary glass marble and try to drop the marble into the water in such a way that the marble will fall all the way to the bottom without first hitting the side of the cylinder. The marble makes an audible click every time it hits the glass wall. Read More...

Keeping Alive the Sense of Wonder … Counter-Intuition

Doug Cunningham, Science Head, Bruce Peninsula District School

“…The whole art of teaching is only the art of awakening the natural curiosity of young minds…”

Anatole France 1921 Nobel Prize, Literature


I have always been interested in finding demonstrations that provoke and awaken the natural curiosity of students. Demonstrations that provide unexpected results, or appear on the surface to violate common sense, are particularly effective vehicles for motivation. These demonstrations or experiments are known as counter-intuitive.

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Bloody Ballistics

George Vanderkuur, Ontario Science Centre

The heart is a mechanical pump that is used to move an incompressible fluid (i.e., blood) through a very elastic closed network of tubes. With each cycle of the “pump,” the whole system expands and contracts. Read More...

The Bistable Diver

Jim Hunt, Guelph Physics Department

This marks the first appearance of this column, which has been prompted by the great popularity of the demonstration sessions at our annual conference. This first column is adapted from an article in the Guelph Daily Mercury, by Jim Hunt of the Guelph Physics Department.

A fun toy which teaches a lot about hydrostatics and Archimedes’ principle can be made from some very simple items. You will need 1) a large transparent dishwashing detergent plastic bottle (see A in Fig.) with a plastic valve cap, and most importantly, with an oval cross section; 2) a cap from a ball point pen; 3) a few small paper clips. Read More...
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