Cold Hands, Warm Science

This morning I have cold hands.  How very fitting that the weather has turned very fall like on the eve of the first day of fall.  I am sure by the time my summer clothes are just about buried beneath sweaters and jeans it will warm up again but in the meantime I am rubbing my hands together!  And as I am doing this I am thinking about how cool this little scientific principle is.

It is why you can make fire by rubbing two sticks together.  Pretty cool right?!

Ways to Warm Your Hands

  • You can insulate your hands in mittens or pockets which works by reducing heat loss.
  • Another way you can warm you hands is by raising your overall body temperature by putting on a sweater or exercising.
  • You can hold a warm drink or sit on your hands which transfers heat through conduction or direct contact.
  • If you hold you hands over a register, the warm air blowing would be heating your hands through convection.
  • And if you hold your hands over a radiator you would be heating your hands through, you guessed it radiations, which is the heat being transferred from one molecule to the next.

Learn more about friction and heat transfer from Wikipedia.  How do you warm your hands when they are cold?



I'm a practical mom inspired by nature & I enjoy sharing ideas that encourage kids' innate curiosity & creativity. Interested in subscribing? Check out the blue box at the top of my sidebar. I'm also a wannabe author/illustrator & product designer by day. Let's connect! If you purchase through my Amazon links I get a small commission at no additional cost to you (thanks for supporting Doodles and Jots)! And remember to always credit your source here & elsewhere on the internet.


  1. I am partial to wearing gloves to keep my hands cozy and warm. I like the idea of just carrying around a hot mug of something delicious everywhere, though. Wouldn’t it be cool if we could start a fire by rubbing our hands together?
    Artchoo! recently posted..6 Things I Have MadeMy Profile

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