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copyright 1992, Gripper Products

Winner of the Cornerstone Award for Youth Services

Grippy and Cormo and the Bathtub

 

Grippy is an Opossum.

Cormo is a big yellow question mark.

Riddles is a Magician who gives away all his secrets.


Grippy and Cormo enter wearing Velcro capes. They sing ``Grip, grip, grip...'' song as they pick up things that we'll use later in the show, and stick them to their capes. Grippy does cartwheels, Cormo hops and skips zig-zagging back and forth. By the time they meet in the middle of the stage, they are covered with large toys. They grab each other, turn around and their capes stick to each other. They take off their capes and hang them on a coat rack in the middle of the stage, which features a large aquarium and a rocking chair for Grippy.

 

Audio

Video

Grippy:

``Well, Cormo, it's time for your bath.''

Cormo is playing hop scotch and singing. Aides roll large glass aquarium filled half-way with water onto stage front and center.
Cormo:

``I want to keep playing. Water's no fun!''

Grippy:

``What would make water fun?''

Cormo:

``If I were a whale, water would be fun. Whales get to bubble and spout!''

Grippy picks up two yogurt containers and a safety pin, and walks toward the aquarium. Cormo, still hopping, hops near to watch.
Grippy:

``You can bubble and spout like a whale. Come and try it. I'll poke a hole in this yogurt cup and you put it under the water.''

Grippy pokes pin into bottom of yogurt cup and gives cup, upside down to Cormo.
Cormo:

``I like those bubbles. But where's the spout?''

Cormo is holding the yogurt cup under the water. Bubbles come out the hole as she speaks. Grippy hands Cormo the other cup.
Grippy:

``Here, push this cup into the first one really fast, like you do when you're stacking them to put them away.''

Cormo does as told. Water spouts up out of the hole in the container.
Cormo:

``That's pretty neat. But now I need some friends to show it to.''

Grippy:

``Okay. I see some children out there. Call some of them up here to play with you. I'll poke holes in more yogurt cups for them.

Grippy pokes holes in yogurt cup bottoms, using the pin.
Cormo:

``You, and you, and you. Come on and play with me. What are your names?''

Grippy repeats each name as each child says hers or his, and hands each a pair of cups.
Cormo:

``Like this....What do you think? What else can we do?''

Children and Cormo make the cups spout and bubble for a while. (I'm hoping some child will think of using a cup as a funnel or a scoop.)
Grippy:

``I see you all know how to pour water. Do any of you know how to pour air?''

Cormo turns a cup upside down.
Cormo:

``I don't see anything pouring.''

Cormo turns empty cup upside down in the air.
Grippy:

``Do you remember the bubbles you made from the hole in the cup?''

Grippy mimes pushing the cup under the water upside down.
Cormo:

``Yes. But when you pour, the stuff has to come out from the mouth of the cup.''

Cormo holds a cup and points to the mouth.
Grippy:

``Okay. But what was in the cup that made the bubbles come out the hole in the bottom?''

This question is addressed to the children. (I hope someone will say air.) This may take a while.
Cormo:

``So, there's air in the cup when it's upside down whether it's up here, or in the aquarium under the water?''

Cormo makes appropriate gestures with the cup.
Grippy:

``Can you think of an experiment to prove that?''

Question is addressed to children. (I'm hoping some child will turn a cup upside down and push it under the water, and then tilt the cup to let the air out. If not, Cormo can do it and let the children copy.)
Grippy: ``You children are good at this.'' Cormo pats some of the children on the shoulder. Grippy hugs others.
Grippy:

``The cup carries its own air supply, kind of like an astronaut's space suit.''

Cormo holds up a picture of an astronaut in a space suit. (I hope we can get a big one of a space walk.)
Cormo:

``I've got an idea. If I stuffed a wad of paper into the bottom of a glass, would it stay dry when the glass is under water?''

Cormo wads up a piece of paper while talking. Children respond to Cormo's question. Grippy asks children why they think the paper will or won't stay dry.
Grippy:

``There's only one way to find out. You've got to do the experiment.''

Grippy will need to develop a gesture for this phrase because it will be used often.
Cormo:

``Who would like to help me?''

Cormo picks a child to help. The child pushes the cup with the paper in the bottom under the water. Then the child pulls the cup up. Cormo takes the paper out of the cup.
Cormo:

``Who will check the paper to see if it's wet or dry?''

Cormo picks a child. Child announces verdict. (Paper will be dry if we did this right -- if we didn't we should do this experiment again and talk about how we need to repeat experiments to be sure we get the same results each time.)
Grippy:

``That's wonderful. There's enough air in that cup to keep the paper dry. (if necessary -- add `at least some of the time.')

Cormo hands paper to Grippy to hold during this speech.
Cormo:

``What else can we do with water that's fun?''

Cormo will need to develop a gesture here -- she'll be asking similar questions often.
Grippy:

``Have you ever played with sinkers and floaters?''

Question is addressed to children as well as Cormo. If children answer, Grippy or Cormo ask them to name something that sinks and something that floats. (If we have that thing on hand, we'll let the child put it in the water to demonstrate e.g. rock, paper, ball, wooden block, plastic block.)
Cormo:

``What about my buckets? Sometimes they float and sometimes they sink.''

Cormo holds up set of buckets.
Grippy:

``First, show us how you make them sink.''

Cormo puts a bucket into the aquarium sideways. It sinks.
Cormo:

``Like this.''

Cormo points at bucket.
Grippy:

`` Now, show us how you make one float.''

Cormo puts a bucket into the aquarium open side up, like a boat.
Cormo:

``Like this. It's sort of like a boat. I can put things in it, and it still floats.''

Cormo holds up plastic dollies and blocks, and lets the children each take a toy.
Grippy:

``How many toys do you think your boat will hold?''

Cormo:

``Let's find out. I'll put this block in.''

Note the bucket will sink slightly when the block is in the bucket.
Grippy:

``Come on (names of children), you can put your toys in, too.''

Bucket continues to sink lower with each addition.
Cormo:

``Did you see what's happening to the bucket? It's sinking. Why would it do that?''

Children try to answer this question. Hope somebody will suggest seeing if the bucket rises again if they take toys out. If not, Grippy can suggest it. Bucket rises and sinks as toys are removed and added. Make this point!
Cormo:

``I think I know how to make it sink all the way! I'll put a rock in it.''

Cormo picks up rock from apparatus table and puts it into the bucket. Bucket sinks! Some of the dolls may float to the surface.
Grippy:

``You did make it sink. But do you know why it sank?''

Grippy needs another gesture here -- this is another common type of Grippy question.
Cormo:

``Because it's heavy?''

Grippy:

``That's a good question. Do heavy things sink in water?''

Cormo:

``Can we do an experiment?''

Again -- Cormo needs a gesture for this -- this is another frequent question.
Grippy:

``Sure. We can always do experiments. Here are some heavy things. Here's a block of ice and a piece of plastic.''

Cormo:

``Plastic isn't heavy.''

Grippy:

``It is if you have a big enough piece.''

Cormo:

``Okay. Should I drop them in the water?''

Cormo picks up the ice and plastic.
Grippy:

``Is that your experiment?''

Cormo:

``Yes. It will show if heavy things sink.''

Cormo drops ice and plastic into aquarium.

Ice floats. Plastic sinks. Cormo is surprised. Some of the children might be, too.

Grippy:

``What happened?''

Question is directed at children.

Grippy tries to get children to say that there's more to sinking and floating than being heavy. It depends on what material you have. A tiny piece of plastic can sink. A huge piece of ice can float. (we can have these props available.)

Cormo:

``That's not what I expected. The heavy ice floated and the light plastic sank.''

Cormo points at the ice and plastic as she talks about them.
Grippy:

``I always love experiments that don't turn out the way I expect. They help me learn something new. And speaking of something new -- here's Riddles. He's always got something new to show us.''

Riddles comes on stage pushing a cart of transparent glasses, a punch bowl, a ladle, a siphon, a red cabbage, a grater, plastic drinking straws, wadded paper, paper boats, and empty strawberry baskets.
Cormo:

``Is he going to pull a rabbit out of a hat?''

Cormo pretends to pull a rabbit out of an invisible hat.
Riddles:

``Any magician can do that. I'm a scientific magician.''

Cormo:

``What do they do?''

Riddles:

``Scientific magicians do the unexpected. But then they give away their secrets. Science is for sharing.''

Cormo:

``Show us something! Show us Something!''

Cormo jumps around and gets the other children excited, too.
Riddles:

``Have you ever seen water run up hill?''

Question is asked of all the children. If any of them say "yes," ask if they know how to make water do that right now. If they do, let them demonstrate. Otherwise, get on with the siphon.
Riddles:

``Water is going to run up inside this tube, out of the aquarium and into this punch bowl. And while I'm doing that, I need some help for my next trick. Who will help Grippy grate the red cabbage?''

While he talks, Riddles immerses the siphon into the aquarium and when it is all under water and bubbled, he puts his thumb over one end.

Meanwhile, Grippy gets the cabbage and grater and a small bowl and begins grating, with the help of any willing children.

Riddles:

``Watch the water carefully. There's nothing up my sleeve. You can do this at home in the bath tub if you have a tube or an old piece of hose. Pretty cool, huh?''

Riddles brings thumb-covered siphon end over to the bowl and lowers it to the bottom. Then he releases the water. He holds up the tube so every one can see that the water is flowing up hill.
Riddles:

``This is called a siphon. A siphon is a tube that lets you move liquids from one container to another without having to lift them.''

By this time the water will be pretty high in the bowl. Some children will be worried that it will overflow. If they aren't Cormo can ask if the bowl will overflow and make a mess.
Riddles:

``Thanks for watching out for me. The nice thing about siphons is that they connect two containers, so the two containers act as one. That means the water in the punch bowl will never get higher than the water in the aquarium. Cormo would you help me here? Please lift the punch bowl up a few inches.''

Riddles uses his hands to indicate that the water in the aquarium and the bowl are the same height.

Cormo lifts the bowl and the water goes down in the bowl as it goes back into the aquarium.

Cormo:

``Would that work for a glass as well as a bowl?''

Cormo puts down the bowl and picks up a glass and gives it to Riddles.
Grippy:

``Isn't it wonderful that she's always asking questions?''

Riddles:

``I love questions! And I love to do experiments to find out the answers. I'll just scoop this glass into the bowl and over the siphon. Then I'll take it out and see what the water does.''

Riddles lowers the glass into the bowl and inserts the siphon into the glass. Then he quickly removes the glass and holds it so its bottom is lower than the water level in the aquarium. He moves the glass up and down to see the water level lower and raise.
Cormo:

``It's working! It's working!''

Cormo jumps around. She encourages other children to jump too. If any of the children want to try the siphon with the glass, let them do so. If they drop it, tell them that's okay -- it takes practice. And the bathtub is a good place to practice.
Riddles:

``And, if you don't have a tube or a hose, you can move water with a drinking straw. You just have to put the straw into the water, cover the top with your finger, and lift up. Like all magic tricks, it takes a little practice -- but you'll get it. Then you can carry the water wherever you want and just lift your finger off the top of the straw when you want the water to come out. Who wants to try it?''

He demonstrates putting a drinking straw into the water, capping it with a finger and picking it up. Then he carries the water to the bowl and lets it pour out.

As many children as want may try this.

Grippy:

``We've been playing with sinkers and floaters. That's something else you can do in the tub.''

Said while children are playing with straws.
Cormo:

``We saw something unexpected. We saw the heavy ice float. And the light-weight plastic sank.''

Riddles:

``You saw plastic sink?''

Riddles picks up a plastic strawberry basket while asking this question.
Cormo:

``Yes. It sank.''

Cormo gestures sinking to the bottom of the tank -- she points to the sunken toys.
Riddles:

``Watch this.''

He puts the berry basket into the punch bowl. It floats.
Cormo:

``How'd you do that?''

Points to floating basket.
Riddles:

``Magic.''

Waves hands mysteriously.
Cormo:

``You promised you tell all your secrets. Remember!''

Points accusingly.
Riddles:

``Sometimes I don't tell. Sometimes I help you figure my secrets out for yourself.''

Riddles includes all the children in this statement.
Riddles:

``Here's a wad of paper. Watch what happens when I drop it into the aquarium.''

Riddles drops the wad of paper into the aquarium. It sinks. Children will tell him so.
Riddles:

``Now, watch when I put this paper boat in the water.''

Riddles puts the paper boat in the aquarium. It floats. The children tell him so. Or if not, Cormo tells him.
Riddles: ``Boats wouldn't be any good if they sank. But boats are made of metal and even cement, and other things that sink. So, why do you suppose boats float?'' Riddles pushes the boat around on the water as he talks.
Cormo:

``My bucket floated earlier -- until I put the rock in it and made it sink.''

Cormo points out the sunken bucket in the aquarium.
Riddles:

``Then your bucket acted like a boat. So, here's a riddle: how is a bucket like a boat? Or like a strawberry basket?''

Children should figure out that the shape is what's important. Grippy can ask questions to help with this process. Cormo can give the answer if necessary.
Riddles:

``That's right. And I know something else you can do with buckets. But since you aren't magicians, you should do this outside.''

Riddles retrieves bucket from the aquarium, half full of water. He swings it over his head several times. Then he pours out the water back into the aquarium.
Cormo:

``That's pretty neat. But what's the red cabbage for? You said that was your next trick.''

Cormo brings the cabbage that Grippy has grated to Riddles.
Riddles:

``You can dump the cabbage into the punch bowl. It needs to soak for a while. And while we wait, I'll do one more water carrying trick and I'll show you. Remember, ALWAYS do this trick over a sink or a tub, and only use a plastic or paper drinking cup. I'll place this 3x5 card over the mouth of this cup (any piece of cardboard or even stiff paper will do), and I'll turn it upside down. You didn't know you could carry water in a cup upside down, did you?''

Riddles half fills a clear plastic glass with water from the aquarium, covers the rim with a 3x5 card and turns the glass upside down. After he is sure the 3x5 card is wet, he lets go of the card. The water stays in the glass.
Cormo:

``Why didn't the water fall out?''

Points to water in cup.
Riddles:

``This paper is covering the opening on the cup, just like your finger covered the opening on the straw when you carried water in that. Do you see anything in common here?''

Riddles points to paper at mouth of cup.

Children can be led to saying something like -- both are covering the opening you usually drink from.

Riddles:

``That's right. And the cover keeps air from getting in, as well as keeping the water from getting out. Something has to be in the cup -- either air or water.''

Cormo:

``That makes sense. We poured air out of the cup earlier. (child's name) would you show Riddles how we poured air?''

child pours air and Riddles says something happy.
Riddles:

``I know one more trick with air and water. See this bottle of water. I'll poke this pin into the bottle. Now you tell me what you think will happen when I take the pin out.''

Riddles has 2 liter soda bottle nearly full with water. He pokes a pin into the bottle somewhere in the top third of the bottle, but below the air line.

Children guess what will happen. Riddles doesn't answer.

Grippy:

``Now, lets do the experiment.''

Riddles:

``Here goes.''

Riddles pulls out the pin. Nothing happens.
Riddles:

``The pin hole was blocked by the water in the bottle. Air couldn't get in through the hole, so the water couldn't get out. Something has to be in the bottle. Now if I unscrew the top, and let air in, watch what happens. Now if I screw it back down again, watch what happens. Again.''

Riddles points at hole.

Riddles unscrews lid and water comes out the hole. He screws it back on and the water stops flowing. He repeats several times.

Cormo:

``That's a good trick, Riddles. But what about the red cabbage? Look, it's turned the water purple!''

Cormo points to water in punch bowl.
Riddles:

``It's ready. Thanks for reminding me. Now, where's my ladle?''

Grippy gives Riddles the ladle from the cart.
Grippy:

``I'm feeling left out here. What can I do?''

Riddles:

``Each of these glasses has a clear liquid in it. I'm going to ladle some of the purple cabbage water into each glass. Before I pour, you can read the labels on these glasses, so we'll all know what's in them.''

Riddles points to the labels on the glasses. It would be nice to have slides flashing these words on the stage at the same time.
Riddles:

``And I've got a job for each of you children, too. (There should be 5 children, or if only 4, Cormo can be one for this trick.) I need each of you to name the color you see when I pour the purple cabbage water into the glass. I'll tap you on the shoulder when it's your turn.''

Riddles pours cabbage water into lemon-lime soda, vinegar, baking soda, clear dishwashing liquid and ammonia. Grippy reads each one. Child names color.
Cormo:

``That's a really good trick. Now tell us how it works. Why does red cabbage turn all those colors?''

Cormo points to all the colors of water.
Riddles:

``Some things even magicians don't know. To learn that you'll have to study chemistry. The trick you can remember is that sour liquids like vinegar make red cabbage turn pink. And slippery ones like soap make it turn green. You can try out other liquids in your kitchen.''

Riddles holds up appropriate glass as he talks.
Grippy:

``And now Cormo, it's time for your bath.''

Grippy stands beside aquarium.
Cormo:

``Not in front of all these people!''