Image via WikipediaI'm not sure where I learned this from. I'm thinking it may have been someone at my previous school that showed me this cool lesson.
Anyways we did the experiment again today just like we do every year when we are studying arachnids, and just like every other year it was a huge success. The children love it and it is a hands on way to teach them something
about spiders. I found this description of the lesson here at Scholastic Teacher :
Sticky Web Science focus: Survival strategies What to do: Spiders use their webs to catch prey. But how do spiders crawl across their webs and not get caught themselves? They have a special oil on their legs. Here's an easy way to show students how this works. Place a piece of contact paper sticky side up on the table. Now, use yarn to create a spider web. Tell the kids to pretend their fingers are spider legs and to try to "walk" across the web. They will stick to it. Next, have students dip their fingers in vegetable oil and do the same experiment-and they will see how much easier it is!
This is basically the same as our experiment except we just used a piece of the stickiest tape (packaging tape) and first let the children feel how sticky it was then we used a small amount of baby oil in a bowl and they took turns feeling the 'sticky web' after having oil on their fingers. They were amazed at how their fingers were able to just glide over the once tacky tape.