Small Wonders for the Weekend: Party Trick

glass and card

Do classic science demonstrations also make good party tricks? I suppose it depends upon the party, but I’m inclined to say yes. What party wouldn’t benefit from a little play and a little magic (otherwise known as physics)?

Materials & Directions

one glass
one stiff card – like a playing card, post card, or cut up card stock
water


Fill the glass to the brim and put the card over it.  Holding the card against the lip of the glass, invert it. Remove the hand holding the card.

overturned glass

To avoid inadvertently dousing a party guest, I would recommend taking this party trick outside, or performing it over a sink or mixing bowl.  Surface tension and atmospheric pressure are amazing, but they do have their limits!

For a good explanation of the physics behind the magic, see http://www.physicscentral.com/experiment/physicsathome/magicwaterglass.cfm