Science Projects With Mouse Traps

Written by rick paulas
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Science Projects With Mouse Traps
There are a number of science projecs you can do with a mouse trap. (la Souris en bois image by Oliv from Fotolia.com)

Using mouse traps in science projects is a wonderful way to showcase the amount of energy that is stored inside of the wound-up trap. Because the energy has to go somewhere when the trap is sprang, students will be asked to direct it toward another goal, such as powering a mouse trap car or launching a catapult. When using mouse traps in science class, make sure to instruct your students on the dangers of accidentally springing it against their fingers.

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Mouse Trap Car

A miniature handmade car is one of type of science project that features a mouse trap. The car is powered by the energy that the wound-up mouse trap creates. Since there is no single way to create a mouse trap car, giving your students a variety of materials (such as wooden wheels, glue, scissors, string, small pieces of wood and balloons) and having them create their own design for the car makes for a challenge. The object of the challenge will be to see how far students can make their car go with the single bout of energy from the mouse trap.

Mouse Trap Fire Extinguisher

The energy created from a snapping mouse trap can also be used to create enough energy to blow out a candle. To do this, however, students will need to find an adequate material to attach to the mouse trap that will focus and direct the air that the mouse trap projects towards the burning candle. Teachers can also reward students for making the mouse trap that will work farthest away from the candle, meaning they focused the air output the best.

Mouse Trap Helicopter

This project is for more advanced students, as it is more difficult than the others listed here. Using basic materials such as Popsicle sticks, scissors, string and glue, students create a helicopter that is powered from the wound-up tension of the mouse trap. This works in the same way as the mouse trap powered car, but instead of pushing the object forward, it directs the energy output into the rotating blades of the homemade helicopter and (with any luck) lifts the mouse trap off the ground briefly.

Mouse Trap Catapult

The goal of this science project is to use the energy from the mouse trap to launch an object as far as possible. To create the catapult, give your students two Popsicle sticks, a rubber band, tape, a spoon and two erasers. With the materials, they can form a catapult using the mouse trap as the central focal point for where the energy will come from. When showing their catapult to the rest of the class, the students will also have to figure out which is the best angle from which to launch the catapult in order to fling the material the farthest from the starting point.

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