After our first magnet exploration, it was time to talk about the magnetic field. What better way to illustrate it than using iron filings? It's one thing to draw the field and talk about it, another to actually see it in action.
We had some fantastic examples.
We did learn the hard way: thicker is not better.
Giving it a little shake helped spread out the filings and show more of the field.
Then we wondered what would happen with a round magnet. Where are the poles? What would happen when we doubled or tripled up the magnets for added strength?
We did a lot of experimenting with two bar magnets. Knowing that same poles would repel, we had to tape them close to each other. And what about two bar magnets wanting to attract? We had to tape those down as well so we could see what happened in the gap. Do you know which one is illustrated above?