This STEAM project for your youngsters is just in time for fall! There are heaps of fun approaches to investigate STEAM at home and in the homeroom, and you don't need to be a technical genius by the same token.
Two small pumpkins
A knife- adult use
Two short pieces of heavy copper wire
Two common galvanized nails
Three alligator clip/wire units (alligator clips connected to each other with wire)
One simple low-voltage LED clock that functions from a 1- to 2-volt button-type battery
Remove the battery from the battery compartment of the clock.
Make a note of which way around the positive (+) and negative (-) points of the battery went.
Number the pumpkins as one and two.
Have a parent help you insert one nail in each pumpkin.
Insert one short piece of the copper wire into each pumpkin as far away from the nail as possible.
Use one alligator clip to connect the copper wire in pumpkin number one to the positive (+) terminal in the clock's battery compartment.
Use one alligator clip to connect the nail in pumpkin number two to the negative (-) terminal in the clock's battery compartment.
Use the third alligator clip to connect the nail in pumpkin one to the copper wire in pumpkin two and set the clock!
The pumpkin clock relies on science, but what does it do? You essentially created a battery with your pumpkins! How cool is that?
The chemical energy inside the thin metal strips inside pumpkins is converted into electricity by very small particles inside the pumpkin. This leads to a current flowing between the two metal strips. This current flows through the pumpkin. Electricity is delivered to the clock via the wires.
“Pumpkin Clock STEM Project” Little Bins Little Hands, https://littlebinsforlittlehands.com/pumpkin-stem-project-potato-clock-kit/. Accessed 27 September 2021.
“Saturday Science: Pumpkin Clock” Children's Museum Indianapolis, https://www.childrensmuseum.org/blog/saturday-science-pumpkin-clock. Accessed 27 September 2021.