Flying Tea Bag Ghosts | My Baba

Over the past few weeks we have done quite a few Halloween crafts and games, therefore it is high time for a science based activity. I can assure you there is no quicker way to get EC involved in an activity than saying “hey, do you want to come and light some stuff on fire?” These flying tea bag ghosts are pretty awesome, but it does involve using matches so adult supervision is a must.

Make sure you follow my Halloween board on Pinterest for more ideas. Don’t forget to save the pin for later.

You will need:

  • Tea bags
  • Scissors
  • Matches
  • Pen
  • Jug of water
  • Bowl
  • Baking tray

We started this experiment outside, but the breeze was just too much of a problem so we did it inside. If you choose to do this inside please make sure that you do it away from anything flammable and have a jug of water at the ready.

Cut the top off the tea bag and dump out the tealeaves so that you are left with a cylindrical bag.

flying tea bag ghosts

Draw a face on the bottom half of your tea bag and stand it up on your baking tray.

flying tea bag ghosts

When you are ready, light the top of the tea bag with your match.

flying tea bag ghosts

The tea bag will start to burn down quickly, and then hopefully will start to float away! When we tried it outside the tea bags simple fell over, and quickly burnt to ash. It might take you a few goes to find the perfect type of tea bag. You need one that is made of slightly thicker material. We found that the Pukka tea bags worked a treat. Once we bought the experiment inside (we did it in the fire place) our bags floated away beautifully.

flying tea bag ghosts

EC was ecstatic when we finally got it to work. He is a pretty sensible kid who has been taught how to safely use matches so I was very happy to let him try lightening them. A couple of times he accidently knocked the tea bags over once he had lit them, but they burn out quickly and stayed on the tray. He would have done this until we had run out of tea bags if I had let him.

flying tea bag ghosts

The Science Behind the Flying Tea Bag Ghosts

It basically comes down to the notion that hot air rises.

As the tea bag burns down the air inside the cylinder heats up and becomes less dense. This air is now less dense the air surrounding it and begins to rise.

If you like these flying tea bag ghosts then be sure to check out my firework film canister experiment.

Pin for later:

flying tea bag ghost experiment.  A great Stem activity for kids to do around Halloween.  They are sure to want to do it over and over again.

About The Author

Nanny Anita
Norland Nanny

Nanny Anita is our resident Super Nanny. Having trained at the famous Norland College, in Bath, she has over 12 years experience, working all over the world with children from 2 months to 17 years old. Nanny Anita is an expert when it comes to keeping the little ones entertained and writes a column with Leonora called 'Get Crafty' for Little London magazine. Nanny Anita has been on hand to answer our reader questions, and she provides weekly arts, crafts and activities for families to do with their children at home. She really is a modern day Mary Poppins!

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