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Static Electricity Experiment—Triboelectric Series Investigation

Play with a variety of materials and see which yields the best result. Do some combinations generate more static? Do some generate none at all? Composition matters and kids will realize this as they explore. 


Related Resources
Static Electricity Experiments


Concepts Addressed
• Typically only electrons leave their atoms.
• Electrons are negatively charged; protons are positively charged
• Electrons and protons create the charges behind electrostatic forces.
• Items develop different static charges depending what they are made of.

Materials Needed
Scraps of fabric (cotton, wool, nylon, polyester, etc.), plastic cling wrap, paper, PVC rods, glass rods (if available), fake fur, real fur (if available.

Time Required
This lab takes about 30 mins.

Student Sheets
• Scaffolded writing prompts & lab reporting 

Static Electricity Experiment—Triboelectric Series Investigation


    Answer Keys and Teacher Notes address most questions and issues that might arise in this study—you shouldn’t have to do any outside research unless you want to.

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