Typically completed by 5-11 year olds, CREST Star and SuperStar challenges relate to everyday experiences. Children complete eight activities to gain a CREST Award, with each activity taking between 45 minutes and one hour to complete.
The activities are designed to be easy-to-run and low-cost. You don’t need to be a teacher, have a science background or have access to specialist equipment to run them. The packs contain helpful hints and tips for you to use, explaining the scientific themes and offering guidance on conversation topics for your children.
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What to do 1. Read the ACTIVITY CARD to familiarise yourself with the activity. 2. Check the Kit list, including preparing a spinner and templates if you think that they might be needed. 3. Set the scene by discussing the news story and show the children a spinner falling. 4. Give children time to explore flat and screwed up paper and to think about what might be making a difference to the way that they fall. 5. Encourage the children to make their own large and small spinners. It is important to let them explore their ideas on their own. Have templates available if children need them. Some may need help to work out how to cut and fold the spinners. 6. Now let children try the spinners to see what happens. 7. Remind them about safety, particularly about not climbing to drop the spinners 8. Give children some time to talk about their observations and ideas. You could show children other spinners with different blade lengths and ask them to predict how they will fall. 9. Children can share their ‘best’ spinner or they can create a display by sticking their spinners onto paper with advice for Mr Sycamore. Avoid too much writing by composing text message replies. 10. There are extra challenges on the ACTIVITY CARD. These can be used if there is any spare time or if the children want to try out more ideas at home and earn a bonus sticker. Things to think about Encourage children to drop their spinners from the same height. This should be as high as possible so that the spinners can twirl before they hit the ground. Very large spinners require a long drop to see any effect. You may need to drop them. If they are too flimsy they will not spin. R SPINNERS Very tiny spinners can spin extremely quickly. It is difficult timing the spinners if they fall quickly. However, if children want to try timing, you should let them have a go to see if works. Adding paperclips or Blu-Tack can increase spin speed. 34
SUPER SPINNERS Take it further In this situation, gravity pulls an object towards the Earth, but air pushes against it. Flat paper falls slower than screwed up paper because there is more air resistance. Gravity pulls the spinners down. The air resists the movement and pushes on each blade causing the spinners to spin. Spinners with longer blades will normally spin more slowly. This is because there is more surface area for the air to push against. The material on large spinners needs to be stiff enough to hold the blades in place to allow it to spin. Sycamore seeds are sometimes called helicopters because of the way they spin as they fall. Keywords • Flight • Shape • Size • Aerodynamics Watch out! It can be useful to drop the spinners from a height greater than a child’s height. However, children should not stand on chairs or tables to launch their spinners unless very closely supervised. A library stool or kitchen steps are better. Children need to handle and carry scissors in a safe manner. SUPER SPINNERS British Science Association Registered Charity No. 212479 and SC039236 35