KSAT Kids Home Science: Design a boat to float

Submit your child’s video with hashtag #ksatkids

KSAT 12 photojournalist Bill Caldera has his son William demonstrate an at-home science experiment that included building a float and determining how many pennies it will hold.

SAN ANTONIO – Hello parents, teachers and students!

Are you looking for something fun to do at home that has a little bit of science behind it?

Check out KSAT 12 photojournalist Bill Caldera and his son William demonstrate an at-home science experiment that included building a float and determining how many pennies it will hold. It’s a fun opportunity to learn while using water.

And be sure to check out GMSA@9 on Wednesdays when Meteorologist Kaiti Blake does science demonstrations and explains the reasoning behind it.

Interested KSAT Kids can submit video of themselves doing an at-home science experiment by using the hashtag #ksatkids, and we will show off some of the submissions during the GMSA@9 newscast. Be sure to include your name and grade level with your submission.

Design a boat to float

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Suggested Materials: aluminum foil, pennies or other small weighted objects, and a container or a sink filled with water.

Questions to ask:

  • What materials will you use?
  • What design features work best?
  • Which materials worked best in your design? Which improvements did you need to make?
  • How many pennies was your boat able to hold without sinking?

Procedure/Instructions:

  • Create and label a sketch with the materials you will need.
  • Design and build your boat. Test your design. Does it float? Make improvements if needed.
  • Try adding one penny at a time to your boat. Can you think of a way to improve your design so that it might hold more weight?
  • Try creating a second boat using another type of material. What design features work best?

About the Authors:

Ben Spicer is a digital journalist who works the early morning shift for KSAT.

William Caldera has been at KSAT since 2003. He covers a wide range of stories including breaking news, weather, general assignments and sports.