For several days I have been seeing people post photos on facebook of their brooms standing up unassisted. I didn't really take the time to see what the fuss was all about. I honestly figured people were playing pranks or something and there was some sort of string holding the brooms up.
But today, at our school, the broom trick caught on. One of our teacher aides walked down and asked if I had seen the "Broom Trick". I told her about seeing it on facebook, but didn't know what it was. She walked over to the corner of the room, opened the closet, got out a broom, and stood it up. It was as simple as that.
What? Hey.... How did you do that?
She replied with, "I don't know. It is suppose to be something about the alignment of the planets."
That didn't sound exactly right to me, but it was still a pretty impressive trick. Simple, but quite impressive.
Before long, this is what our hallway looked like.....
Almost every teacher in the school had taken their brooms outside their doorway and stuck them in the hall. All standing with no strings. Unassissted.
The kids were completely amazed. Heck, even the adults were amazed!
Our class did a little bit of research to answer the questions of why it worked. We learned that the trick is really nothing more than a balancing act. We learned that it has nothing to do with the alignment of the planets and everything to do with the broom's center of gravity being directly over it. We tried to have a little mini lesson on balance and gravity, but I think some of my kindergartners still believe on some level that a bit of magic was involved.
The whole trick was all in good fun.......until the maintenance department arrived.
The maintenance men marched right past the brooms, without even checking up. They didn't smile. They didn't seem to take notice of 30 brooms standing on their own power, balanced in the hall. They just kept walking. They made it all the way to my door at the end of the hall passing broom after broom outside each teacher's door.
They arrived at my door ready to fix a leak in my classroom, but paused before coming into my room. One of the men nodded over at the brooms and said....
"Did all of the teachers decide to park their rides out in the hall today?"