Return to Headlines

‘Science Circus’ Assembly at Clinton School

Science Circus at Clinton Elementary Although a three-ring circus with clowns, lions and trapeze artists weren’t center stage at the “Science Circus” assembly at Clinton School, students were just as excited to learn about matter, parts of an atom, and air pressure. Dozens of students enthusiastically participated in thrilling experiments on stage.
Michael Fisher, an educator from the Liberty Science Center, led two interactive assemblies for K-5 students on January 16 in the school’s auditorium.

During the show, students explored the positives and negatives of static electricity. Three student volunteers on stage were each given a placard with a part of the atom: electron, proton and neutron. Students learned that protons have a positive charge, electrons have a negative charge, and neutrons possess no net charge.

olunteers showed the audience how positive and negative particles repel and attract. The volunteers who were a “proton” and “neutron” stuck together and demonstrated this by standing side-by-side.  And the “electron” volunteer ran around and around the nucleus as the audience cheered her on. Science Circus at Clinton

After selecting a student volunteer, Fisher took a balloon and rubbed it on the volunteer’s hair. To the audience’s
surprise, the student’s hair “magically” created static electricity. Fisher explained that opposite charges attract, so positively charged hair is attracted to the negatively charged balloon and will rise up to meet it.

Fisher mixed boiling water and liquid nitrogen into a large bucket. A white cloud of water vapors formed from the mixture to the students’ amazement. He walked through the aisles of the auditorium with the bucket of willowy clouds as students said “Wow!”

Other “magic tricks” at the Science Circus included an electro-magnetron that sent shocking jolts through student
volunteers whose hands were clasped together. And students watched as a soda can was crushed by the power of air pressure.

The assembly was made possible with support from Clinton PTA funding.