Tree of life
Explore the basics of electricity and electrical circuits using conductive and insulating dough.
- 1 x toilet roll,
- 2 x pipe cleaner (large),
- 2 x googley eyes,
- 2 x LEDs,
- brown string,
- dark green dough,
- light green dough,
To make the "tree trunk", coil twine string around the tube. Then, secure the ends with glue.
1 x toilet roll
Roll out green conductive dough into a flat circle, just enough to cover the surface area of the toilet roll.
toilet roll, green conductive dough
Roll out green conductive dough into ~2cm ball. Then flatten it into the shape of a leave
green conductive dough
Place the rolled out dough on top of the textured part of the leaf. Then press the dough down to make an imprint
1 x leaf, conductive dough
Place "leaf" on top of the "tree trunk"
Repeat step 3 to 5 to create more "leaves"
Now, it's time to make the "caterpillar"! Roll out three 1cm balls using conductive dough
Roll out plasticine just enough to cover the length of the caterpillar. The plasticine will act as an insulation layer in between the "conductive caterpillar (negative terminal)" and "conductive leaves (positive terminal)". Without this layer, both of the terminals would touch each other and it'll create a short circuit.
Mould the insulation layer to cover half of the caterpillar's head. And make sure that it covers the length of the caterpillar.
To make its eyes light up, poke the shorter end (negative terminal) of the LED into the caterpillar. Ensure that there is enough insulation in between the LED pins, to prevent any short circuit
Before placing the caterpillar onto the tree, we have to test if it is able to conduct electricity properly. To do so, place the negative plate of the battery pack onto the caterpillars body. At the same time, place the positive plate on the exposed ends of the LEDs. If both LED lights up, it means that you're good to go
Squishy circuit battery pack
We're gonna complete the circuit now! Simply poke the exposed LED pins into the leaves
Slot in the positive plate of the battery pack in between the leaves. To close the circuit, place the negative plate onto the caterpillar's body. It's eyes should light up
(Optional - Make a snail) Roll the ends of two pipe cleaners.
Your tree of life is now complete! To challenge yourself, add more insects to the tree!