3… 2… 1… Launch!

You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to launch these balloon rockets. A little air pressure is all it takes.

What you will need:

  • A balloon (a round or elongated one)
  • String (long enough to span a room)
  • Adhesive tape
  • A drinking straw

Here’s what to do:

  1. Tie one end of the string to the back of a chair (or another sturdy location like a doorknob) on one side of the room.
  2. Thread the string through the straw and then tie that end of the string tautly to another chair on the opposite side of the room.
  3. Inflate a balloon and pinch the end shut while you tape the balloon to the straw.
  4. Don’t tie the balloon shut, just pinch it closed while you tape it. You might want a friend to help you.
  5. Now, let it go!

Take it further:

  • What do you notice when you release the balloon?
  • Does it matter how you tape the balloon on the straw?
  • Does the type of balloon, string or straw make a difference?
  • What happens if the string is at an incline or attached vertically to the ceiling?

You can also experiment with adding cardboard wings or rudders and see if you can get the balloon rocket to spiral as it moves forward.

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