Posted by: Deb | July 2, 2009

Doing Chores – Vacuuming

The perpetual problem with being a mother is time – how do you get all the chores done when you have children who want your attention every moment? Or if they’re independent, why would you spend your precious free moments on the housework?

The solution – put them to work!  My eldest was scared of the vacuum until one day I was cleaning the playdough out of her bed (don’t ask) and now it is the best toy. She’s pretty good at vacuuming, but better at experimenting.  There are heaps of things they can learn while vacuuming, so I’ll just do one today:

What can you learn with a  vacuum?

What can you learn with a vacuum?


It will only work when the cord is plugged in and turned on.  Our homes are filled with electrical equipment, but how often do we stop and explain that energy travels out of the wall and down the cord to make the vacuum work.  The vacuum changes the energy into other types

Baby questions – What can you hear?

  • What can you feel? (Both the sucking and putting your hand on the machine) 
  • What happens when you point it at things?


Toddler question – What sort of things is the vacuum doing? 

Vacuuming hair feels really weird!

Vacuuming hair feels really weird!

  • Making noise
  • Getting hot
  • Some of them have lights
  • Inside it is moving (which is what makes it suck).

Extension question – what other things in our house get electricity out of the wall? What do they change the energy into?

Pre-schooler/Reader extension – Make up cards with either words or pictures of the different sorts of energy you identify around the house – electricity, heat, sound, light, movement and chemical for batteries and fuel are the main ones – plus an arrow.  Even better, let your kids choose and draw the cards!  Use them to represent the different machines around the house, e.g.

Vaccuum cleaner

Energy changes in a vacuum

Energy changes in a vacuum


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