Dancing Bats and Ghosts

Dancing Ghost (7)

What is it with playground slides and static electricity? Travis was fascinated the other day when he kept picking up a shock each time he went down the slide and then touched the railing on the stairs back up. So we turned it into a teachable moment – minus the shock! – with this little lesson on static electricity at home. You can cut any shape you want into tissue paper, but since it’s Halloween, we had to go with bats and ghosts of course.

Dancing Ghost (1)

I didn’t trust myself to cut tissue paper free-hand, so downloaded templates of a bat and ghost, and traced onto the paper before cutting out.

Dancing Ghost (2)

Tape the shapes to a tabletop or similar surface; set aside.

Dancing Ghost (3)

To create the static, blow up a balloon (a spooky black was the perfect shade for today), and rub in your hair (or on a sweater). Hold the balloon over the tissue paper, and the static will make the ghosts and bats lift up and dance!

Dancing Ghost (6)

Travis loved every element of this experiment, including making static from his own hair…

Dancing Ghost (5)

…And seeing if he could make the tissue paper rise up.

Dancing Ghost (4)

Of course you also could just create static and the tissue paper will stick directly to the balloon, but taping our tissue paper spookies to the table turned it into a hokey Halloween jig.

Dancing Ghost (8)

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