Can you have backwards numbers?

IMG_3127

Numbers are useful for counting and measuring things. We use them all the time, even when we’re not thinking about maths. For example, I use them every day, for telling the time, cooking, exercising and driving my car.

Normally when we count, we start at zero and count upwards in whole numbers: one, two, three, and so on… But what happens if we count down from a bigger number – do we have to stop when we get back to zero?

Continue reading

How is light made?

light

Light is all around us. The Sun shines on the Earth every day and we use electric lights or candles to light our homes, schools and workplaces. We use torches or streetlights when we are out and about at night and build fires for light and warmth when we go camping. Even in the middle of the night, there is some light from the stars in the sky.

But one of my daughter’s schoolfriends asked me how light is made. And her brilliant question made me think about natural and man-made light sources.

So, let’s find out more about light – what it is and how it is made…

Continue reading

Why do cats bury their poo?

Fishfingers_cat

Our cat, Fishfingers, goes outside several times a day so that he can wee and poo in the garden. When we first got him, we put a litter tray (a plastic tray filled with bits of clay or sawdust that he could use as a toilet) inside the house, just in case he needed to use it. My 6-year-old noticed that if Fishfingers did use the litter tray, he would then spend ages afterwards trying to cover up his wee/poo with the clay or sawdust.

But why does Fishfingers try to cover up his wee/poo? Let’s find out about cat behaviour to work out the answer:

Continue reading

How do they make electricity?

electricity_power_girl

In Britain, it is easy to take our reliable electrical power supply for granted. Many things in our homes, schools, work places and public spaces are powered by electricity. Think for a minute about all the things you’ve done today – how many of them used electricity?

I’m sitting in my kitchen, using a laptop to type this blogpost with the lights on, sipping a hot cup of tea. I wonder how much electricity I’m using right now?

So, how do we make electricity? And how do we keep our power supply reliable?

Continue reading