Hearing without ears

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Hearing without ears
Age Range 8-11 (grades 3-5), 11-14 (grades 6-8), 14-18 (grades 9-12)
Group Size medium (6-20)
Setting indoors, outdoors
Setup Time short (0-5 min)
Duration short (5-10 min)
Subjects snakes, hearing
Key terms vibrations
Materials none
Presentation Style demonstration

Brief Description

Children learn how snakes sense vibrations and why snakes rely on this sense over traditional hearing.

Scientific Background

Snakes do not have external ears but they do have internal ears. Needless to say, snakes cannot hear very well. They are however sensitive to vibrations on the ground and they use this sense as a major substitute to traditional hearing.

This Is How You Play

  1. Place the pie tin upside down on a table.
  2. Sprinkle a very thin layer of salt over the upturned bottom of the pie tin.
  3. Tap on the upturned bottom of the pie tin with a spoon.
  4. Observe and record any difference in the movement of the salt crystals.

Results: Tapping on the pie tin causes the salt crystals to move around.


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