The summer holiday is a great time to get inventing with kids. Airing on CBeebies, Bitz & Bob is the STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and maths) focussed animation for pre-schoolers that brings the fun of engineering home. One of the key principles of Bitz & Bob is to practice problem solving and we’re very happy to share this guest post from the team behind the show, just in time for the summer holidays.

Whilst it’s great that children love watching Bitz find a solution by doing her ‘Bitz Brain Blitz’, we also want them to experience it for themselves.

Practicing Resilience  

Bitz & Bob shows children that STEAM exists in everything that we do. When Bitz and the gang need to solve a problem they don’t always get it right first time. They may struggle, get frustrated or even fail at times but they have the confidence to apply imaginative thinking to iterate new solutions. Our aim is for pre-school age girls and boys to engage with STEAM and get creative early on so that they become familiar with these skills.

You Can Do It Too!

We’ve created a series of do at home experiments that show children some basic principles of engineering while having loads of fun. Using only simple materials that are found in nurseries or home, with the help of an adult, children can invent a way to save the day just like Bitz!    

  • Static Butterflies

Make a butterfly magically flap its wings using static electricity. The balloon passes over negatively charged electrons that attracts the positively charged butterfly.   

You will need; pencil, thin card, thick card, balloon, glue, pipe cleaner, googly eyes, tissue paper, scissors, paint and brush.    

 

  • Floating Balls

Learn about propulsion by making foil balls float in mid-air. Gravity will make them come down eventually but the harder you blow the higher they’ll go.

You will need; pencil, thick card, bowl, scissors, straw, foil, tape.     

 

  • Balloon Rockets

Make your balloon rocket across the room and learn about propulsion! The air inside the balloon acts like the fuel. It is stronger than the forces acting against the balloon such as air resistance and gravity.

You will need; balloons, straws, scissors, string, tape.

                                       

Tune into CBeebies at 16:45 to catch Bitz & Bob and you can find us on BBC iPlayer anytime. We hope you have a wonderful summer and remember when you have a problem to solve, Blitz it like Bitz!

 

Dr Heather Williams
Heather helped establish ScienceGrrl in June 2012 and is ScienceGrrl's Director. Heather is a Senior Medical Physicist for Nuclear Medicine at Central Manchester University Hospitals and honorary Lecturer in the Centre for Imaging Sciences at Manchester University. She makes sure pictures of patients are top quality so the doctors can trust what they see, and tries out new and better ways of imaging the body’s functions. When she’s not working, Heather enjoys running, cycling and spending time with her sons.
Dr Heather Williams
Dr Heather Williams
Dr Heather Williams

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