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It’s Shark Awareness Day! Let’s celebrate by learning a little bit about shark physics.
Here’s what’s up: Sharks don’t have an air bladder like most of their finned friends. This means it’s hard for them to remain buoyant (aka float in liquid). However, sharks have a few mechanisms to prevent them from falling to the ocean floor. One of them is an enormous liver full of oil.
Want to show your kids how it works? Try this activity together.
Shark Buoyancy Activity
1.Use permanent markers to decorate both water bottles like sharks (eyes, fins, teeth, etc.)
2.Next, fill one bottle with water and the other bottle with the same amount of oil.
3.Fill a clear container with water (we used a large bowl).
Ask your kids: What do you think will happen to each bottle when we put it in the water?
4.Put each water bottle in the water and see what happens to the “sharks.”
Ask your kids: Why do you think the oil-filled bottle floated and the water-filled bottle sunk?
Use this as an opportunity explain how buoyancy works and why sharks are buoyant.