Dancing Spider Races

Dancing Spider Races

Materials:

  1. Aluminum foil
  2. Water
  3. Dry Erase Marker
  4. Straws

Directions

  1. Lay out your aluminum foil, fold at the edges to keep water in
  2. Using a NEW dry erase marker, draw on your spiders
  3. Slowly pour water around the spiders
  4. Let the spiders lift off the foil
  5. Blow into your straws at the spiders to help them float down the foil

NOTE: New markers work the best, the fresh ink allows you to get a good thick layer of ink down. I tried using an older marker that still worked well but it did not lift off, when I opened a new marker with fresh ink it worked great!

NOTE: if you place your foil at an incline the spiders will float down faster, be sure to have water covering your foil to help them float. After your first set of races simply dry your foil off at the top, redraw your spiders and start again.

UPDATE! After several requests I tried to pinpoint what may cause problems when re-creating the spider races, I found that the dry erase marker can NOT be washable, only the standard markers work (I tested many brands and found no issues, however I did have the best luck with Expo dry erase). Also some brands of aluminum foil do not work as well, if you find you are having issues making them float first test out your markers, try it on a piece of glass or smooth ceramic plate, if they float on a plate or glass and not on the foil your issue is the foil, if it does not work on the glass then it is the brand of marker you are using (and remember the marker needs to be new, if it is not I found more issues with getting the spiders to lift)

 

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29 Comments

  1. Patty Marburger

    What kind of pen is it you used? It looks like fun. How did you come up with it?

    Reply
    1. Michelle

      It’s called a dry erase marker.

      Reply
      1. Sheena (Post author)

        yes πŸ™‚

        Reply
  2. Patty Marburger

    How did you come up with that,and what kind of pen was used to make the spiders move?

    Reply
    1. Sheena (Post author)

      Hi there, I used a New dry erase marker for the spiders, I have seen in the past where someone took a dry erase marker and drew a stick figure on a ceramic plate and made him dance with water, so we decided to take it one step further for Halloween and make spiders, we tested it out on foil and it worked great so we did spider races πŸ™‚

      Reply
  3. janey

    ok thats funny

    Reply
  4. Gina

    Did not work at all! So sad.

    Reply
    1. Sheena (Post author)

      Make sure your marker is new and is a dry erase. Also you might try it on glass or a ceramic plate to see if you have better luck, it could possibly be the brand of foil you are using πŸ˜‰ just a few ideas to try out πŸ˜‰

      Reply
  5. Megan

    Can you repeat this again after the foil has been wet? Or does it need to be dry? Thanks

    Reply
    1. Sheena (Post author)

      It will need to be dry. We just took a towel and dried off a small portion at the top (we where working on a slight incline so most of the water was slowly running down ) and started again. We did several races before the foil got pretty bumpy from repeated use πŸ™‚ πŸ˜‰

      Reply
  6. Vironica Davis

    Thank you .I can help my grandkids have some fun!

    Reply
  7. Judy

    Does it matter whether the water is warm or cold?

    Reply
    1. Sheena (Post author)

      I tried it both ways and it worked with cold and warm water.

      Reply
  8. Judy

    Ok so I did a trial run before taking it outside with the kids. I followed the instructions and used a new Expo dry erase pen and slowly poured the water around the spider. I have tried it with warm tap water and cool tap water and neither spider is lifting at all. Any suggestions?

    Reply
    1. Sheena (Post author)

      Hi there, I used a couple different brands of dry erase and found some work better than others, it might either be the brand of aluminum foil possibly or the brand of marker. I would test out on a piece of glass or ceramic plate to see if you can make the spider lift off on one of those if not than I would guess the issue might be the brand of marker. If it does work on the glass or plate than it might possibly be the brand of aluminum. Just a few ideas to try out. πŸ˜‰

      Reply
  9. Amanda

    I think the trick is that you need a dry erase marker with an oil based ink. It is the oil trying to get away from the water that makes the ink float. I did something very similar for my daughter’s pre-k Valentine’s party last year. We drew hearts and blew through the straws to make them move around in the water. Unfortunately, I can’t recall which brand of dry erase marker we used.

    Reply
    1. Sheena (Post author)

      Hi there, I found as long as it does Not say washable all brands I tried worked (not sure if they where an oil base or not, but that does make sense πŸ˜‰ )

      Reply
  10. Jenny

    What brand of foil did you use?
    What brand of dry erase?
    Great idea!
    Thanks

    Reply
    1. Sheena (Post author)

      Hi there, I used Reynolds wrap for the foil and Expo for the dry erase πŸ˜‰

      Reply
  11. Jo

    Great activity, however not really practical if you have to use a brand new dry eraser. Even when I did that, I still found it didn’t work

    Reply
    1. Sheena (Post author)

      Thank you so much! Yes you are correct, if you are doing this project on a regular basis it would not be practical at all. However I have found it will work with ones that are fairly new still as long as the ink flows well, and it must be a NON- Washable dry erase. If they are washable dry erase it does not work πŸ˜‰

      Reply
  12. Charlyn

    What brand of foil did you use?

    Reply
  13. Charlyn

    Oh I just saw what brand thanks.

    Reply
  14. Laurie

    I tried everything-all of the suggestions including the markers and the foil, and it just won’t work. Even when it did lift a little bit, my spider just broke apart. Such a bummer!! Really cute idea though. I just wish I could have made it work. πŸ˜•

    Reply
    1. Sheena (Post author)

      I found if you poor the water in around the spider very slowly it does not break apart as easily, if you have not yet tried it on a ceramic place some have had a little better luck with that since the surface is a little different πŸ˜‰

      Reply
  15. Victoria

    I loved this and was excited to show off some dancing spider “magic” with the kids but it didn’t work πŸ™

    I bought new Expo markers and heavy duty Reynolds wrap. I tried it in sunlight and shade, every which way, and it was a dud. I don’t know how you did it but it looks neat.

    Reply
    1. Sheena (Post author)

      Hmm I would double check that they do not say washable on them, that seems to be what most people have been running into. If they dont say washable I would test it out on a smooth ceramic place and see if it works, if the markers are correct they should work great on a plate.

      Reply
  16. Christine

    Wow! I thought this was a camera trick. Tried it at home on a ceramic plate with a dollarama quartet dry-erase marker, anyway. So much fun, my kids love it. Thanks for posting.

    Reply
  17. Teresa

    I also found that the dull side of Reynold’s Wrap works best. My markers were new and my spiders were STUCK to the shiny side!

    Reply

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