Dancing Candy Hearts

Around Valentine’s Day, my kids get lots of those candy conversation hearts.  I remember as a kid, I loved reading the messages on them.  The messages are a bit different these days (“Text me”?)  Save a few of those hearts to do this quick 5 minute science experiment.  Use up some candy, do a little science, watch a little dance.

Here’s what you’ll need to get started:

  • Candy Conversation Hearts
  • Tall clear glass (we used a tall glass and a test tube)
  • Baking Soda
  • Vinegar
  • Water
  • Measuring spoon

img_0613

Add 1 cup of water to a clear tall glass or tall test tube.  You can color yours purple or red for Valentine’s Day but that is totally optional.

img_0615

Add in 2 teaspoons of baking soda and mix well.

img_0617

Add a few candy hearts to the glass.

img_0621

We used one of each color.img_0620Watch the hearts sink to the bottom of the glass.
img_0622

Add about 1/4 cup of vinegar to the glass slowly (or else it will will overflow!)

img_0625

Watch the candy hearts dance… or in our case, only the pink and orange hearts danced.  The rest stayed happily at the bottom of the glass.img_0627

It really looked so cool watching the hearts float up and then sink down.

img_5086 img_5087

We will definitely be trying this again by testing the different colored hearts separately, testing different brands and testing different fizzy liquids to see if any of those change how the hearts behave.

For more Valentine’s Science Activities, try these:

For more floating and sinking activities, try these:

The Science Behind the Activity:

This is a great experiment demonstrating sinking and floating.  The hearts are denser than the liquid so they initially sink when you put them in.  When the vinegar is added, the reaction creates carbon dioxide gas.  As the carbon dioxide gas bubbles attach to the surface of the hearts, they decrease the density of the hearts and the hearts float to the top.  At the surface of the liquid, the gas bubbles pop and the hearts sink back down.  The process keeps repeating until there isn’t enough carbon dioxide left to raise the hearts.

To see where I got the idea from and more details, follow the link below:

http://inspirationlaboratories.com/valentine-candy-science-dancing-hearts/

 

Inflating Spooky Ghost!

You have to try this super easy experiment that will WOW! your littlest ones.  Using my favorite 2 ingredients and a balloon, this one is great for Halloween parties or just for fun!

Here’s what you need to get started:

  • Baking Soda
  • Vinegar
  • Funnel
  • Empty water bottle
  • White balloon
  • Black sharpie

img_9083

Inflate the balloon slightly and draw a ghost face with the sharpie

img_9084Here’s my attempt at a spooky face

img_9085

Let the air out.  Place the funnel into the opening of the balloon and add about 1-2 tablespoons of baking soda into the balloon.

img_9086

Place the balloon aside and add some vinegar to the empty water bottle

img_9088 img_9089

Place the balloon over the mouth of the water bottle taking care that none of the baking soda (the secret) drops into the vinegar below…yet.

img_9090

Now, the fun begins!  Turn the balloon upside down so it dumps the baking soda into the bottle and watch!

img_9094

The kiddos LOVED it!!!  Such an easy and simple little experiment to set up!

To see my other “fizzing” experiments (perfect for any holiday), click on any of the following links:

Science behind the Activity:

This is a twist on the classic baking soda and vinegar experiment.  Baking soda is a base and vinegar is an acid.  When combined, they release carbon dioxide gas (the bubbles).  Since the gas is trapped by the balloon, the balloon inflates and reveals the ghost!

 

 

 

 

Fizzing Jupiter

For those of you who follow my activities, you know how much I love my baking soda and vinegar experiments.  To be fair, the tots and my littlest superhero LOVE baking soda and vinegar so it’s not ALL about me 🙂

This one is a simple and easy addition to your space theme.  I call them Jupiters (even though my color mixing wasn’t as successful as Jupiter) but you could make them any planet or leave them white for the moon.

Here’s what you need to get started:

  • Baking Soda
  • Water
  • Measuring cup
  • Large Mixing Bowl
  • Tray for drying the rocks
  • Vinegar
  • Black or purple food coloring (optional – but colors make everything more fun!!)

img_8829

To make the planet:

Combine 2 cups of baking soda and 1/2 cup of water (add the desired color to the water) in a large bowl.  To make the the Jupiters, I split this into two bowls, one with red (looked orange) and one with yellow.

img_8750 img_8751

Then I mixed both together to get an orange-yellow swirly Jupiter look.  Kind of.

img_8752

Using your hands, take a handful and roll into a ball.  If it’s too dry, it won’t stay together, if it’s too watery, it will melt into a sloppy puddle.  Add water or more baking soda to adjust the consistency.  

img_8753

Let them dry overnight.  I placed mine in a plastic container and put them in the freezer to harden. 

The next morning, the planets were hard.    Note: this recipe will yield about 10 balls.

To explore:

I gave each little one a “Jupiter” and a cup with vinegar that had black food coloring and some silver glitter (“Starry Space Juice” is what I called it!).

img_8573

The tots definitely know what to do with the dropper and the vinegar.  Space juice was added to the planets for some fizzy fun!

Version 2 img_8754

Such an easy and simple little experiment to set up!

To see my other “fizzing” experiments (perfect for any holiday), click on any of the following links:

Science behind the Activity:

This is a twist on the classic baking soda and vinegar experiment.  Baking soda is a base and vinegar is an acid.  When combined, they release carbon dioxide gas (the bubbles).  The fizzing and bubbles are just way too much fun for the kiddos!

Here’s where I got my fizzy idea from: http://fun-a-day.com/fun-science-space-theme-fizzing-planets/

 

 

 

 

Apple Volcano

This was our first full week of fall and it’s been HOT and sweltering over here.  Finally today, it feels like Fall and it’s a perfect day to celebrate apple season.  Aside from eating and baking apples, why not use some over-ripe apples to play with? Here’s an easy twist on the classic “volcano” experiment, just in time for Apple season.  So, while you are picking out your apples, get a few extra and let your little ones have some explosive fun!

Here’s what you need to get started:

  • Apples (any variety will do)
  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar
  • Food coloring/liquid water colors (optional – but everything is so much more fun with colors!)
  • Knife and metal spoon to hollow it out (Adult use only)
  • droppers and spoons
  • cups
  • Tray to contain the mess

img_8465

First cut the top off the apple and scoop out the insides and the seeds to form a “bowl”.  I found it easiest to cut a circle off the top and then use a metal tablespoon to scoop it out.

img_8466

This kept the top of the apple intact to use as a lid.  We saved the seeds and stem for our Exploring the Five Senses with Apples activity.

img_8428

I set up a tray with the hollowed apple, dropper, cup of baking soda, spoon and cup of vinegar (I colored ours red for fun)

img_8418

Then I invited the superheroes to play.  These little ones KNOW exactly what to do with baking soda and vinegar!

img_8423

Repeat as many times as your superheroes want to do it.  We went through a box of baking soda between the two older ones!

img_8427

The Science behind the activity:

This is a classic acid-base reaction.  Baking soda is a base and vinegar is an acid.  When they combine, they create a chemical reaction where the baking soda neutralizes the vinegar.  A by-product of the reaction is carbon dioxide.  That is what the bubbles are.  As the carbon dioxide is formed and bubbles out, it carries some liquid up with it, hence the “eruption”.

Extension: 

There are a million ways to do this experiment.  I can pretty much adapt this to any theme.  Another great Halloween theme application of this is the Pumpkin Volcano, which we also did.

For my Tiny Tot class, I ended the class by reading “Ten Apples On Top” by Dr. Seuss.

For more Apple Science Activities, try the following:

 

 

Fizzing Leprechaun Pots

Baking soda and Vinegar are my two most favorite science experiment ingredients! They are inexpensive, always in the pantry and there are just SO many fizzy, colorful things to do with them.  Here’s my latest version, just in time for St. Patrick’s Day but would also be so much fun as a witches’ brew at Halloween

Here’s what you need to get started:

  • Baking Soda
  • Vinegar
  • Food coloring (I love my liquid watercolors)
  • Candy Kettles (any party store has them seasonally)
  • Bin/tray for the mess
  • Glitter (I used gold and green for St. Patty’s Day)
  • Teats, gold coins, etc… to hide in the pots (not necessary)
  • Droppers
  • Cups for the vinegar

To set up:

I placed a few pots in the bin.  I placed one treasure (plastic gold coins) at the bottom and added 1-2 teaspoons of baking soda on top. I sprinkled a little glitter on top of baking soda because glitter is sparkly and so much fun!IMG_1148

Pour vinegar (Leprechaun Potion or Witch’s Potion) into small cups.  I used 6 different colors to create a rainbow.

IMG_1150 2

To play: 

I gave a small bin with a few pots inside to each of the tiny tots in my class.  I supplied them with a large dropper (more like a turkey baster-perfect for toddlers!)  And then the magic began!

IMG_1150They added their favorite colors to the pots and watched them bubble and fizz!  So easy!  So fun!  So colorful!

IMG_1154

That’s IT!  See, you can do this at home too!  And the little ones love it!  Adapt it for Halloween by placing plastic eyeballs, spooky fingers, creepy spiders, etc… for a spooky witches’ brew!  Or use plastic easter egg halves like I did with my Fizzing Easter Eggs experiment.  Or place some baking soda in a hollowed out mini pumpkin and make Pumpkin Volcanoes or into apples for Apple Volcanoes!  So many options!

IMG_1160

For more St. Patrick’s Day and Leprechaun Science, please visit:

Science Behind the Activity:

This is a twist on the classic baking soda and vinegar experiment.  Baking soda is a base and vinegar is an acid.  When combined, they release carbon dioxide gas (the bubbles).  The fizzing and bubbles are just way too much fun for the kiddos!

Here’s where I got my fizzy idea from: http://littlebinsforlittlehands.com/st-patricks-day-fizzing-pots-science-experiment-color-mixing-activity/

 

 

Rainbow Fizzing Tray

Baking Soda and Vinegar are by far the BEST two ingredients you can have on stock for setting up some fun science explorations.  This Rainbow Fizzing Tray is EASY set up and clean-up and can keep your little ones busy for quite a while.  The tots in my classes kept wanting to do this one OVER and OVER!  And an added benefit: it makes beautiful designs!  Science and Art all in one!

Here’s what you’ll need to get started:

  • Small tray/plate or cookie sheet
  • Baking Soda
  • Vinegar
  • Food coloring (We use liquid watercolors)
  • Droppers
  • 3-6 empty cups (or an ice cube tray)

IMG_5291

Add enough baking soda to your tray to cover the bottom.

IMG_5292

Pour vinegar in your cups and add food coloring to create your desired colors.  We used the six rainbow colors but even just the 3 primary colors will yield some beautiful results and can be a lesson on color mixing.  You can also use an ice cube tray.

IMG_1150_2

Hand your child the tray and a dropper and let them add the colors to the tray and experience the fun rainbow fizzing and eruptions!

IMG_5293

Drips and fizzing and bubbles and colors!

Version 2

Perfect for toddlers as well as preschoolers.

How pretty are some of the designs the tots created?

IMG_5297 IMG_2737

The Science Behind the Activity:

I love activities like this because they are open ended and require no instructions for kids.  The baking soda and vinegar react in a classic acid/base reaction to release carbon dioxide gas which is responsible for the fun eruptions and bubbles.  Using droppers helps strengthen those little fingers in preparation for writing as well as developing fine motor skills.  Mixing different colors is a lesson in color mixing and experimentation.  Just SO MUCH learning to be had from a simple little tray.

For more fizzing science experiments, click on the links below:

Love Potions

Did your kids get way too many candies for Valentine’s Day?  Why not use some of it up with some Love powder and Love juice to make some “Love Potions”?  So easy to set up and a great way to use up that candy!

Here is what you need to get started:

  • leftover candy (we used skittles, nerds and conversations hearts, but you can use whatever you have!)
  • cups or beakers or large plastic test tubes
  • droppers
  • spoons
  • Love Powder (baking soda-I tinted mine pink)
  • Love Juice (vinegar-I tinted mine purple and red)
  • water

To make the love powder, I just placed some baking soda in a ziplock bag and added some red food coloring to it and mixed it well.  Plain white baking soda works just fine!  For the Love juice, I added red and purple food coloring to plain white vinegar.  I love colors.  So do the kids!

I placed the test tubes in a bin to contain the mess.  I gave each child an empty cup, a cup of love powder and some love juice, a dropper and cup filled with assorted colorful candies.
IMG_5148 And I let them mix and make their potions!

IMG_5101

They love using droppers to make precise measurements and the addition of some vinegar and baking soda to make bubbly potions!

IMG_5160

Pouring from the cup works just as well too!

IMG_5158

And for a bonus, some of the conversation hearts began “dancing” in the bubbly potions!  (This is actually another simple candy experiment that you can do at home as well!  For more details, visit my Dancing Candy Hearts experiment)

IMG_5163

 

All in all, the tots had a blast mixing and pouring and fizzing and bubbling, and we used up a lot of leftover candy experimenting instead of getting cavities:)

Check out some more of my candy science experiments and activities:

Science Behind the Activity:

This is one of my favorite activities because it allows young children to be creative and explore and investigate.  I didn’t give them any instructions, just some materials and let them have at it.  One of the girls just wanted to make things fizz.  Another child wanted to see what colors the potions would turn with different candies.  One just wanted to mix everything together.  Each child did something different.  And most importantly, they learned about cause and effect: What happens if I do this?

Fizzing Christmas Trees

In our home (and with the Tiny Tots in my classes), baking soda and vinegar NEVER get old.  All the fizzing and bubbling and color changes make it a fun activity anytime.  So, how about making a few Fizzing Christmas Trees to get in the holiday spirit?  My superheroes and the Tiny Tots had a blast with these!

Here’s what you need to get started:

  • Baking Soda
  • Water
  • Measuring cup
  • Large Mixing Bowl
  • Paper plates cut in half
  • Glitter, Sequins, Beads, etc… (anything you’d like to mix in to your trees)
  • Vinegar
  • Green food coloring or green liquid watercolor
  • Bin to contain the mess

IMG_4524

To make the fizzing Christmas Trees:

Add 2 cups of baking soda (about one 1lb box) to a large bowl.  Add glitter, beads, sequins (not necessary but always fun).  IMG_4477

Add the food coloring to 1/2 cup of water and place in the bowl.

IMG_4479 Mix together well with your hands.  It will be crumbly. If it’s too water/soupy, add more baking soda.

IMG_4480

Cut a paper plate in half.  Roll it into a cone shape and tape the sides.

IMG_4482 Fill it with about half of the baking soda mixture, making sure to pack it in tightly to form a nice pointy top for your tree. (This recipe makes 2 trees)IMG_4481

Trim the bottom of the plate and flatten the top so that you don’t have leaning trees (like some of mine!)

IMG_4483

Place in the freezer overnight to firm up the shape.

IMG_4484
The next morning, the trees were very hard. Perfect!

To play: 

Unwrap the paper plate from the trees and place into a bin.  I added some baking soda on the bottom to look like snow.

IMG_4490

I had my superheroes add a little “snow” to the trees.

I gave them 2 cups of “Elf Potion” (vinegar with red and green food coloring) and a dropper.  They knew EXACTLY what to do!

IMG_4489

The instant the vinegar hit the trees, the fizzing and bubbling began.

IMG_4492

As the trees “melted”, they found beads and sparkly glitter.  The older ones kept at it until the tress were all gone and a sloppy, glittery, goopy mess was left as evidence of some fun holiday science!

IMG_4505

Bubbles and fizzing!!!  They LOVED it!!

Such an easy and simple little experiment to set up with a Christmas twist.  For more ideas on how to play with baking soda and vinegar throughout the year, check out my other fizzy activities:

Science Behind the Activity:

This is a twist on the classic baking soda and vinegar experiment.  Baking soda is a base and vinegar is an acid.  When combined, they release carbon dioxide gas (the bubbles).  The fizzing and bubbles are just way too much fun for the kiddos!

Here’s where I got my fizzy idea from: http://littlebinsforlittlehands.com/melting-christmas-tree-baking-soda-science-sensory-play/

 

 

Fizzing Easter Eggs

The tiny tots in my class LOVE baking soda and vinegar experiments and I’ve posted several different variations of them.  Here’s my latest version, just in time for Easter.  So grab an extra pack of eggs at the dollar store and set up this fun experiment in a few minutes!

Here’s what you need to get started:

  • Baking Soda (Bunny Powder!)
  • Vinegar (Bunny Juice!)
  • Food coloring (I love my liquid watercolors)
  • Plastic Easter eggs (I have amassed a large collection over the years)
  • Muffin Pan or styrofoam egg carton (cardboard will leak and make a mess)
  • Glitter (because sparkles are FUN)
  • Droppers (I use the ones I get from the pharmacy with my kids’ medications)
  • Cups for the vinegarIMG_1244

To set up:

I placed a dozen halves of plastic easter eggs in my muffin tin.  (You can also use a styrofoam egg container but don’t use the cardboard ones.  Once the vinegar gets added, you will have a leaky mess)I placed about 1/2 tsp of baking soda into each egg and sprinkled some glitter on top.  You could also add some foam bunnies or beads or anything else for some extra fun!

Pour vinegar (Bunny Juice) into small cups.  I used 6 different colors to create a rainbow.  Kids love choosing different colors.

IMG_1150 2

To play: 

I placed a muffin tin with the eggs in front of each of the tiny tots in my class.  The colored vinegar was ready for them to play with droppers.  The tots already know what to do with the droppers at this point 🙂

IMG_1248
They added their favorite colors to the eggs and watched them bubble and fizz!  So easy!  So fun!  So colorful!

IMG_1251

That’s IT!  See, you can do this at home too!  And the little ones love it!  Adapt it for any seasonal occasion as I did with my Fizzing Leprechaun Pots for St. Patrick’s Day, Fizzing Christmas Trees or as Pumpkin Volcanoes for Halloween.

IMG_1253

 Science Behind the Activity:

This is a twist on the classic baking soda and vinegar experiment.  Baking soda is a base and vinegar is an acid.  When combined, they release carbon dioxide gas (the bubbles).  The fizzing and bubbles are just way too much fun for the kiddos!

Here’s where I got my fizzy idea from: http://littlebinsforlittlehands.com/fizzy-eggs-easter-baking-soda-science-experiment/

Magic Leprechaun Rocks

Lucky the Leprechaun is always up to some sort of mischief and this year he left some magical rocks!  Part of the fun was looking for the rocks and part of the fun was trying to break open the rocks with the “Magical Leprechaun Potion”!  Just 2 simple kitchen ingredients and some gold coins/rocks are all you need!

Here’s what you need to get started:

  • Baking Soda
  • Water
  • Measuring cup
  • Large Mixing Bowl
  • Tray for drying the rocks
  • Gold coins (I got mine from the dollar store)
  • Vinegar
  • Green food coloring (optional – but colors make everything more fun!!)

IMG_1107

To make the magic rocks:

Combine 2 cups of baking soda and 1/2 cup of water (add some color to the water if you want colored rocks) in a large bowl.  Mix together well with your hands.  It will be crumbly.

IMG_1108

Using your hands, make a rock shape with the mixture.  If it’s too dry, it won’t stay together, if it’s too watery, it will melt into a sloppy puddle.  Hide your coin inside the rock.IMG_1109

Let them dry overnight.  I placed mine on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  They will be delicate when wet.IMG_1111 The next morning, the rocks were hard.  Be careful, they break easily (You can also freeze them overnight to keep them from breaking as easily).  Note: this recipe will yield about 10 rocks.

To play: 

That naughty Leprechaun left the rocks in our backyard for the boys to find.

IMG_1112

The boys were excited to hunt for the Leprechaun rocks! The boys grabbed one rock each and were very eager to break them open.

IMG_1113 IMG_1114

This was the first casualty.

IMG_1115

 

The next rock was placed in a plastic bin.  I gave them both some droppers and some green Leprechaun Potion (Vinegar with some green food coloring) to pour over the rocks.

IMG_1118
Bubbles and fizzing!!!  They LOVED it!!

Aha!  I see something shiny inside!

IMG_1123

Such an easy and simple little experiment to set up with a St. Patrick’s Day twist.  The variations on this are endless: dinosaur eggs with dinosaurs hidden inside, Easter eggs with a little prize inside, etc…

For more Leprechaun Science Fun, try the following:

Science Behind the Activity:

This is a twist on the classic baking soda and vinegar experiment.  Baking soda is a base and vinegar is an acid.  When combined, they release carbon dioxide gas (the bubbles).  The fizzing and bubbles are just way too much fun for the kiddos!

Here’s where I got my fizzy idea from: giftofcuriosity.com

Extension:

With the broken rock, we added the crumbly powder to a small “pot of gold” that I had out for my Fizzing Leprechaun Pots activity.

IMG_1116

The boys used the leftover magic potion to create a bubbly green potion in the pot.

IMG_1127 IMG_1129

How did your Magic rocks turn out?  Any tricks to make them more durable?  Let me know in the comments!