The why of children. Why about the echo

When children begin to be aware of the world around them, their curiosity to learn, know and experiment is awakened. The 'whys' stage begins. Around 3 years of age, children want to know everything, and repeatedly 'bombard' by asking everything that comes to mind.

Answering these many questions can in many cases be a difficult and arduous task for parents, since they can come up with ingenious questions that would not have occurred to us as adults and that do not always have an easy answer.

In We help you learn a little more about the most common questions children often ask about the echo. With these simple answers you can explain to your children the existence of this phenomenon.

Children are fascinated by the acoustic phenomenon produced by the echo by which a sound returns to the place of origin with a certain delay. The echo generates many doubts in children. Some of them are these:

1. Why does the echo exist?

The echo is produced when we emit a sound or a word, some waves are emitted, if they bounce against something hard, these waves return with a few seconds delay. As if someone repeats what we say although not immediately.

2. Why is there no echo in a room with furniture?

In order for us to perceive the echo, there must be a distance of about 100 meters from where the sound is emitted to the material with which it bounces.

3. Why don't ducks echo?

The squawk of the duck does emit an echo but the sound waves that the 'quack' originates are hardly perceptible by the human ear.

4. Why is it easier to hear echo in mountains or open spaces?

In addition to requiring a distance of about 100 meters from where the sound is emitted to the material against which it bounces, it is necessary that this material be hard so that the sound waves can bounce. If you throw a ball against a wall it bounces but if you throw it against a curtain it does not. The same thing happens with sound waves.

5. Why does the echo repeat what we say several times?

If the sound collides with different surfaces, with different degrees of inclination, it reaches us in different emissions and degrees of intensity, as if it were repeating what we say louder at the beginning and lower and almost inaudible at the end.

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