Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Humpty Dumpty Experiments

Humpty Dumpty is probably one of my most favorite nursery rhymes to explore with kids.  There are just so many activities and experiments that naturally go along with it.  We started by reading the rhyme and I found a animated cartoon song of it on YouTube for the kids to watch.  That was followed by an amazing discussion as to why Humpty was sitting on the wall in the first place.  

Next, each child choose a plastic egg and created their own "Humpty Dumpty".
We each built a wall for Humpty and tried balancing him on it to see if an egg could actually sit on a wall.  As you can see, the kids got very creative with their walls in order to balance him on it.  Very important problem solving and critical thinking going on in these pictures.

Our next experiment wasn't really about the nursery rhyme, but it was a fun experiment to try.  We decided to find out if Humpty likes floating in salt water or fresh water.  We used two pitchers, one with tap water in it and the other we dissolved salt into.  Then we plopped Humpty (a real, fresh egg) in the pitchers. We learned that the salt makes the water more dense so the egg was able to float in it. After a discussion, the children determined that he liked floating in the salt water, but liked to dive to the bottom of the tap water. 

Our next experiment was to figure out if Humpty would survive a fall.  Again, we used the plastic eggs.  We stood on chairs and dropped the eggs onto the bare floor.  Lo and behold, he cracked open.  One of the kids suggested we try it on the carpeted area, because maybe it would cushion his fall.  So we took the chairs to the carpet and tried the experiment again.

The carpet did break his fall!
Finally, we drew before and after pictures of Humpty, him sitting on the wall and what happened and how he felt after his fall.

I love exploring the nursery rhymes with young children.  There is so much to learn from nursery rhymes.  One, they are a connection to our past. I'm sure you learned them as a kid. My mom taught them to me, so I know her mom taught them to her.  They are great for learning rhythm and rhyming words. Most importantly, they are fun!  Most make very little sense and are quite silly. 
I wonder which nursery rhyme you remember best from being a kid? 

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