[Surfnetkids: 02 Jun 2010] Ben Franklin’s Kite Experiment

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#1. June 2, 2010

Barbara J. Feldman
Dear Reader,

A handful of viral YouTube videos really spoke to me this week, so I’ve created a special category for them over at Surfnetkids Video for everyone to enjoy, along with short commentary by me. The category is called (guess what?) Viral Video Picks.

This week’s picks include Swagger Wagon Video (calling all minivan parents), Greyson Chance Singing Lady Gaga (have you seen this twelve-year old piano player belt out a song?) and Jessica’s Daily Affirmations (too, too cute!).

If I missed any of your favorite viral video picks, just leave me a comment at my blog address below, and maybe I’ll include them in next week’s picks.

http://www.barbarafeldman.com/viral_video_picks.html

See ya on the Net,
Barbara J. Feldman
"Surfing the Net with Kids"
http://www.surfnetkids.com

#2. Ben Franklin’s Kite Experiment

by Barbara J. Feldman
http://www.surfnetkids.com/ben_franklins_kite_experiment.htm

Ben Franklin’s Kite Experiment Printable (** for premium members only)
http://www.surfnetkids.com/printables/ben_franklins_kite_experiment.pdf

In June of 1752, Ben Franklin sought to prove that lightning was electrical by flying a kite in stormy weather. When Franklin touched the iron key attached to the kite’s string, he saw sparks fly between his knuckle and the metal key. But some historians doubt that this famous experiment really happened. Learn more at today’s batch of sites.

Code Check: Ben Franklin and the Kite Experiment
****
Code Check, a publisher of books about building and electrical codes, is not the usual educational site for middle-school students, but they feature Ben Franklin in many of their books because he “made major contributions to each of the four main disciplines of building inspection: Building, Plumbing, Mechanical, and Electrical.” This page explains Franklin’s famous experiment, along with an overview of the Leyden Jar used in the experiment. “The first device capable of storing an electric charge was the Leyden jar. Invented by a German, Ewald G. von Kleist, on November 4, 1745, he made the discovery by accident..”

Julian T. Rubin: Ben Franklin
*****
Because there was no eyewitness account written about Franklin’s kite experiment, some historians argue that the experiment didn’t occur at all, and others argue that it happened differently than described. “It doesn’t really matter if Benjamin Franklin indeed performed the kite experiment in reality. What really matters is the question if this experiment (or maybe only a theoretical proposal) is founded on sound scientific principles and as a matter of fact it is a possible experiment that enables the conclusion that lightning is an electric phenomenon.”

Museum of Hoaxes: The Electric Kite Hoax
***
Historian Tom Tucker has his own ideas about Franklin’s electrifying kite adventure, and published a book about it (“Bolt of Fate: Benjamin Franking and his Electric Kite Hoax”) in 2003. Tucker argues that the experiment was originally proposed as a joke to get back at the British Royal Society because they had given a cold shoulder to his earlier electrical research. “It was his way of saying, Go fly a kite in a storm! But when his suggestion reached France, where people took it seriously, Franklin decided to play along and claimed he really had conducted the experiment.”

… Click to continue Ben Franklin’s Kite Experiment .

#3. Printables Club Members Also Get …

Surfnetkids Printables Club Members also get the following printables to use in the classroom, the computer lab, the school library, or to send home with students:
Ben Franklin’s Kite Experiment Printable
Easy Science Experiments Printable
Kites Printable
*** Are you curious? Get your own ten-day trial membership:
http://www.surfnetkids.com/printables-club.htm

#4. Related Games

Ben Franklin Quiz
http://www.surfnetkids.com/games/franklin-sw.htm

Electricity Crossword
http://www.surfnetkids.com/games/electricity-cw.htm

Printable Electricity Crossword
http://www.surfnetkids.com/games/electricity-cwpp.htm

#5. Surfing the Calendar

Italy Republic Day
Jun 2, 1946

Queen Elizabeth Crowned
Jun 2, 1953

Aesop’s Birthday
Jun 4, 620 BC

Ronald Reagan Dies at Age 93
Jun 5, 2004

Ben Franklin Flies a Kite
Jun 5, 1752

D-Day Normandy Invasion
Jun 6, 1944

“$64,000 Question” Game Show Premiered
Jun 7, 1955

Transit of Venus
Jun 8, 2004

#6. Quote of the Week

“Genius without education is like silver in the mine.” ~~ Benjamin Franklin ~~ (January 17 1706 – April 17, 1790) American statesmen, author, printer, satirist. Click here for more Benjamin Franklin quotes.

#7. Surfnetkids Classified Ads

Download the best, free educational software titles and games and discover new interactive learning websites on: http://www.educational-freeware.com

#8. Subscription Management

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