Project: Make a simple motor

Here's a fun motor you can make in a few minutes. You need a 1.5 Volt battery (AA or AAA), two safety pins, some tape, a small magnet, a foot of wire, some nail polish, and some Post-it Notes.

1. Tape the two safety pins to the battery as shown.

2. Wrap the wire into a coiled loop as shown. Strip the insulation off the ends of each wire so that the wire comes into contact with the safety pins.

3. Before you put the coiled loop of wire into the holes in the safety pins, apply a bit of nail polish to the top of both sides of the exposed wires. Leave the bottom of each wire unpainted. This will allow the wires to make an intermittent electrical circuit with the battery, which will make make it spin.

4. Use a pad of Post-It Notes to raise or lower the magnet so that it is as close as possible to the loop of wire without touching it.

5. Give it a spin and watch it go!

(I shot this video several years ago, and it was fun to hear my daughter's baby voice.)