Support for PBS Parents provided by:


  • Cat in the Hat
  • Curious George
  • Daniel Tiger
  • Dinosaur Train
  • Odd Squad
  • Peg + Cat
  • Sid the Science Kid
  • Super Why!
  • Wild Kratts
  • Martha Speaks
  • WordGirl
  • Thomas & Friends
  • Arthur
  • Sesame Street
  • The Electric Company
  • Cyberchase
  • Between the Lions
  • Mama Mirabelle
  • Caillou
  • Chuck Vanderchuck
  • Oh Noah
  • Fetch!
  • Fizzy's Lunch Lab
  • Maya & Miguel
  • Mister Rogers
  • Postcards from Buster
  • Clifford
  • SciGirls
  • Wilson & Ditch
  • WordWorld
  • DragonFly TV
  • ZOOM

Light Bulb Challenge

Use this simple experiment to test whether new light bulbs are really more energy efficient.

Materials

  • incandescent bulb, 60 watts
  • compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulb, 15 watts
  • 1 desk lamp, shade included
  • 1 Tbsp cooking oil
  • 1 dropper
  • 2 half-sheets of paper
  • ruler
  • 2 books of equal thickness
  • stopwatch or clock
  • paper and pencil

Directions

  1. Start by making a bridge with a half-sheet of paper and books and placing the lamp with an incandescent bulb about 6 in. from the paper.
  2. Have your girls place 1 drop of oil on the paper, and quickly measure the initial diameter of the oil circle.
  3. Turn on the lamp and observe for 5 min. Measure the final diameter—quickly! Then subtract the initial diameter from the final diameter to find out how much the oil spread.
  4. Repeat this experiment, substituting the CFL for the incandescent bulb.
  5. How do the oil circle diameters from each light bulb compare? (Incandescent bulbs give off more heat than CFLs, causing the oil to spread farther. They also require more energy because most of the energy is lost to heat.) Have each family member try placing their hand under each bulb for a few seconds. What do you feel?



You May Also Like


Produced by: Funding is provided by:
TPT Logo   National Science Foundation logo L'Oreal For Girls in Science Northrup Grumman Foundation logo

What's this?

PBS Parents Picks

  1. DIY Wrapping Paper image

    DIY Wrapping Paper

    Make your own kid-friendly wrapping paper this holiday season!


  2. PBS KIDS Holiday Coloring Pages image

    PBS KIDS Holiday Coloring Pages

    We put together a collection of coloring pages featuring your child's favorite PBS Kids characters. Just click, print, and color.


  3. From Our Sponsor image

    From Our Sponsor

    Cuties are back in season. Stock up today and unwrap sweetness.


PBS Parents Newsletter

Find activities, parenting tips, games from your child's favorite PBS KIDS programs and more.

×