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How Arctic Animals Stay Warm

Time to explore the Arctic with this science experiment designed for preschool and school-age children! During this activity, children will have the opportunity to explore how blubber helps animals stay warm in freezing temperatures. Parents may need to assist with some of the steps as well as clean-up. Fun and messiness are guaranteed while children learn about Arctic animals!



What You Will Need:

  • Big bowl of water

  • Masking tape or painters tape

  • Ice

  • Two Ziploc bags

  • Shortening




Directions:





1. First, pour the ice into the big bowl of water to recreate the “arctic waters”. Feel free to place the bowl of water in the freezer to get it extra cold!






2. Feel the water with your fingers to test how chilly the water is!














3. Next, place your hand inside one of the Ziploc bags. Make sure your hand fits completely inside the bag.
















4. Take your shortening and press the shortening onto the Ziploc bag to mold the shortening all around your hand.



This element will be used to imitate the blubber animals have to keep them warm in the cold Arctic waters!








5. Next, slide the second Ziploc bag over the shortening and use the second bag to continue to form the shortening and secure it around your hand. You may need an adult's assistance with this step since the shortening will be very messy and greasy!

6. Ask an adult to tape your wrist to ensure no water gets inside of the bag!


7. Tape as best as you can, it’s okay if the grease makes taping difficult.




8. Stick your wrapped hand inside the bowl of water and see if your hand feels cold! Feel free to also place your unwrapped hand inside of the bowl to compare the temperature.



9. Finally, clean up your shortening by collecting the shortening in clumps (do not let the shortening go down the sink, since the shortening may clog your sink) and wipe down your work station with warm, soapy water!


 
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