This ingenious Wandarama is a toy version of a Van de Graaff machine. Charge it up and watch your tinsel shapes fly!
This magical toy is an ingenious, battery-operated, static electricity generator that allows you to float tinsel shapes on a cloud of electrons. Press the button on the Wandarama for a few seconds to generate a static charge.
Drop the tinsel shape onto the stick to quickly transfer the negative charge to the tinsel. Since like charges repel each other, the negatively charged tinsel shape floats above the negatively charged stick.
As you’re learning how to float the tinsel shapes, remember that you don’t have to constantly press the button. Just press the button for a few seconds to build up a static charge. Pressing the button continuously both drains the batteries and lessens the effectiveness of the Wandarama stick.
- Book of mylar foils
- Foil dish
- Small bag of biodegradable packing peanuts
- Decoration stickers
Activity and educational notes provided
BATTERIES – not included
Each wand requires 2 x AA alkaline batteries
Click here to download the PDF document.
HOW DOES THIS MAGICAL TOY WORK?
Housed in the handle of the Wandarama stick there are 2 plastic rollers and an elastic band – a miniature mechanism similar in design to Van de Graaff’s invention. A Van de Graaff Generator consists of a hollow aluminium sphere seated on top of an insulated column that houses a rubber belt moving at high speeds.
Depending on the materials the rollers and belt are made from the sphere can be positively or negatively charged. The Wandarama’s design works in a similar way.
This amazing toy makes it possible for you to understand how static charges form, interact with other charged and uncharged objects, and grasp the concept of static electricity and electric force fields in a fun and exciting way.
4 Make the mylar shapes come to life!
Charge the wand and allow one of the mylar shapes to be charged by touching the wand. The mylar shape will immediately repel from the stick due to the repulsion of like charges. If your hand is held near the wand, the mylar will be attracted to your hand because you are neutral.
Once the mylar touches your hand, it will instantly become grounded (Mylar is a conductor), losing its positive charge and become neutral. With the positively-charged wand held in close proximity, the mylar will again be attracted to the wand until it touches the wand becoming positively charged by contact and is repelled from the wand again.
This process repeats causing the shapes to jump back and forth from your hand to the wand. Cool stuff!
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