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April 1 Science: April Fools' Day Inspiration

Finding the fun in April Fools' Day gags and pranks—and the science connections to capitalize on the fun!

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Photo: Screenshot from Google Nose video.


It is April 1, and April 1 means April Fools' Day jokes and pranks from trickster friends and even companies. YouTube is coming to an end (and all the videos being deleted)? Did you hear about Google Nose Beta ("the new scentsation in search")? Twitter is apparently doing away with vowels, unless you pay for them. Maybe you spotted MAKE's headline about creating oranges from a 3D printer? Clever! (See the full write-up for some other smart April Fools'-inspired fictitious headlines.) Even the WeAreTeachers site got in on the April 1 fun with their write-up on the Standardized Multi-Systemic Technologically-Sound Fully-Differentiated Standard Central Academic School Standards, better known as the SMSTSFDSCASS. And the Elmer's Teachers Club shared a link to this video of a science teacher pranking his fifth grade class with a gravity hoax.


Hands-on April 1 Science History

April 1 also coincides with the birth date of Richard Zsigmondy, a Nobel Prize-winning chemist for research on colloids. If you have a preschooler—or ever were one—maybe you remember mixing up and messing with Oobleck? It's a classic example of a colloid, along with ketchup and quicksand, neither of which you probably want to squish around in your hands!

Tactile Oobleck, with its non-Newtonian fluid properties, seems right on track for an impromptu April Fools' Day hands-on science experiment either at school or at home. The ingredients for Oobleck are ones you probably already have in your kitchen cabinets. If you want to turn your Oobleck play into a more comparative science activity, you'll find directions for mixing up two additional solutions in the "Making Mixtures: How Do Colloids Size Up?" science Project Idea.


Fun Science Connections

Did you know Oobleck, the colloidal substance, gets its name from a Dr. Seuss title? Maybe you missed that one somewhere along the way? If so, you will want to check out Bartholomew and the Oobleck.

Suggestions for Playful April 1 Science

A few other suggestions for April Fools' Day science and conversations to capitalize on the prankster energy in the air:



Share your April Fools' science story by emailing blog@sciencebuddies.org.

Science Buddies Science Activities

Science Buddies Summer Science Roundup


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School and family science weekly spotlight: experiment with tonic water and a black light to learn more about fluorescence and light energy!

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Are you a picky eater? Maybe there is a scientific reason for your reluctance to eat certain foods even if you know they are good for you. Find out with a tongue-dyeing taste-testing science project!

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Catch the annual Perseids meteor shower and tie in some fun family astronomy science with an exploration of parallax. How far away are the things we see in the sky?

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School and family science weekly spotlight: make a solar oven from household and recycled materials.

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With different kinds of dried beans, plastic cups, and water, kids can model rocks and observe the way different sized particles in rocks affect how much water a rock can hold.

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Students can experiment with the engineering design process by trying to improve the durability of a simple handheld device.



Your Science!
What will you explore for your science project this year? What is your favorite classroom science activity? Email us a short (one to three sentences) summary of your science project or teaching tip. You might end up featured in an upcoming Science Buddies newsletter!



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