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November 03, 2017

You can find science all around the world. It doesn't have to be limited to a laboratory or a classroom. There are a lot of fun and interesting experiments you can perform right in your home. All you need is some basic equipment and a few household items. You'll also need a lot of curiosity. Do these experiments with your kids and you'll awaken in them a love of learning. These experiments are easy and enjoyable enough to do with the whole family. Plus, performing them is definitely better than just sitting in front of the television all day.

In this article, we'll go through different experiments from the different categories of science. We'll go through what you need to prepare along with the procedure of the experiments. We'll also explain what happens so you can explain them to your child too!

Balloon that Self-Inflates

You'll need:

  • an empty drink bottle
  • a latex balloon (the thin ones work best)
  • an elastic band
  • a measuring Jug
  • yeast
  • sugar
  • a cup of water

Follow these steps:

  1. In the cup, place a teaspoon of sugar and 2 tablespoons of yeast. Then pour the mixture into the bottle.
  2. Place the balloon over the bottle's top then make it secure using the elastic band.
  3. Then watch as the balloon self-inflates!

Here's an explanation:

Since yeast is a micro-organism, it will start eating the sugar. When this happens, it respires and produces carbon dioxide in the process. This carbon dioxide then inflates the balloon.

Double Glazing

You'll need:

  • 2 empty plastic bottles (1 liter)
  • 1 empty plastic bottle (2 liters)
  • a sharp pair of scissors
  • 2 paper cups (they have to be identical)
  • hot water
  • 2 thermometer strips
  • sticky tape.

Follow these steps:

  1. Cut off the tops of the 1 liter bottles. When you're done, you should be able to completely cover the paper cups with the remaining part of the bottles when placed upside down.
  2. Then cut the top off the 2 liter bottle. It has to be slightly taller than the 1 liter bottles.
  3. Stick the thermometer strips to the sides of the paper cups.
  4. Pour hot water into the paper cups, making sure they have the same amount. Do this to ensure that both cups have the same temperature to begin with.
  5. Cover each of the paper cups with the 1 liter bottles. Place the 2 liter bottle over one of the 1 liter bottles. Since it's slightly taller, there should be a small gap between both the bottles. So, one paper cup is single glazed while the other is double glazed.
  6. After a few minutes, check the thermometer strips. You'll see that although they both started at the same temperature, they don't cool down at the same time.

Here's an explanation:

Since the double glazed cup has more layers protecting it, the water in it cools down slower than the cup which is single glazed.

soda coke mentos eruption

Erupting Soda Bottle Volcano

You'll need:

  • 1 big bottle of diet coke
  • 1 pack of mentos

* It's best to do this experiment outdoors. Also, you'll need to be quick!

Follow these steps:

  1. This experiment is extremely easy. Open the bottle of soda, drop the mentos into it and stand back to watch the action!

Here's an explanation:

The surface of the candy reacts with the constant chemical reaction happening in soda. So when the 2 meet, the chemical reaction gets accelerated.

Hot Ice

You'll need:

  • sodium acetate
  • water
  • a glass
  • a Pyrex dish
  • a saucepan
  • a pair of scissors

Follow these steps:

  1. Pour the sodium acetate into a saucepan then add water little by little. Add enough water to dissolve the sodium acetate completely.
  2. Heat up the mixture gradually while you're stirring. After a while, the gel will start to dissolve.
  3. Remove from the heat then pour the contents of the saucepan into a glass. Be sure to keep any undissolved particles out.
  4. Place the glass in the refrigerator to cool down.
  5. After an hour, take the hot ice mixture out of the refrigerator.
  6. Touch the liquid and see it freeze instantly! If you feel the outside of the glass, it should feel warm. Amazing, right?

Here's an explanation:

This is a great example of super-cooling or hyper-cooling. But in this case, the water turns into ice even though it's warm!

Hyper-cooling

You'll need:

  • 1 metal bucket
  • 1/2 kg of table salt
  • 2 bottles of water (500ml)
  • a bag of crushed ice and water
  • rock salt
  • thermometer

Follow these steps:

  1. Fill the metal bucket with ice.
  2. Place the water bottles deep into the middle of the bucket. Make sure they're buried in the ice.
  3. Sprinkle rock salt over the ice generously.
  4. Place a thermometer into the ice, right between the bottles and keep track of the temperature. Over the next 30 minutes or so, you'll see that the temperature will gradually drop. Keep adding ice and salt to the bucket as needed.
  5. When the temperature goes down to 17℉, take one of the bottles out carefully. Strike the bottle against a hard surface. Then watch as ice crystals form at the top then rapidly move down through the water.
  6. Then carefully take out the other bottle and twist the cap off. The same thing will happen to the water in the bottle. It will instantly freeze from the top all the way to the bottom like magic!

Here's an explanation:

The salt and the ice helped drop the temperature of the water in the bottles below water's normal freezing point. When the water freezes this fast, the molecules gather in a very organized way, forming a crystalline construction. So when you strike the bottle or open it, the crystals form instantly.

sprout plants

Let It Grow!

This is a broad kind of experiment which you can do with your kids. Try growing different kinds of plants indoors or outdoors. This is a great experiment as it teaches children responsibility. Teach your child the importance of caring for plants so they will grow and thrive.

Growing things also allows you to perform different experiments. You can play around with the levels of light, water, and fertilizer. You can place the plants in different parts of your house and see where they grow best. Ask your child to keep a log and note down any changes that they observe. You and your kids will surely learn a lot!

bend water with a balloon

Magic Tricks with Physics

  • Create some sticky rice: Fill a clean jar with rice. Then, push a pencil into the jar until it reaches the bottom. Slowly pull the pencil back up without taking it out completely. Then push the pencil back down again. Keep doing this and watch as the rice compacts around the pencil. As the friction build, you'll be able to lift the jar using the pencil!
  • Use static electricity to bend water: Take a blown-up balloon and rub it against your head for a few minutes. This creates a static charge. Turn on the tap enough that a slow stream is flowing. Then bring your charged balloon near the stream and see what happens!
  • Make a super-bouncing ball: Take a tennis ball and a basketball. Place the tennis ball right on top of the basketball. Hold the basketball with one hand and the tennis ball with the other. Now drop the balls at the same time and watch as your tennis ball becomes a super-bouncing ball!

Making Slime

You'll need:

  • 2 cups
  • 2 spoons
  • food coloring (any color)
  • borax powder
  • PVA glue
  • water

Follow these steps:

  1. Place about 150 ml of water in a cup then mix in 2 tablespoons of borax powder. Stir the solution until the borax dissolves completely.
  2. In the second cup, add in 2 tablespoons of PVA glue along with 4 tablespoons of water. Add a few drops of food coloring. Continue stirring until all components are mixed well.
  3. Take 2 tablespoons of the borax mixture and add it to the glue mixture. Stir the mixture and watch as it turns into slime.
  4. Let the slime sit for about half a minute then let your child pick it up!

Here's an explanation:

When you mixed the borax in, it caused cross-links between the PVA strands. Because of this, the strands are unable to slide over each other so the mixture acts like slime.

Rainbow Inside a Glass

You'll need:

  • 5 glasses
  • sugar
  • water
  • food coloring (different colors)
  • a tablespoon

Follow these steps:

  1. Line up all the glasses then place 3 tablespoons of water in 4 of the glasses.
  2. Add some sugar to the glasses: 1 tablespoon in the first glass, 2 tablespoons in the second glass, 3 tablespoons in the third glass, and 4 tablespoons in the fourth glass. Stir the water well until all the sugar dissolves.
  3. Add food coloring to each of the glasses. Use different colors for each glass.
  4. Take the fourth glass and pour a quarter of the water in it to the last glass.
  5. Now take the third glass and gently pour the contents over the first layer, making sure it doesn't mix. Stop when you've poured the same amount as the first layer.
  6. Then take the second glass and repeat the process. Finally, take the first glass and repeat the process again.

Here's an explanation:

If you poured the mixtures correctly, you should end up with a glass that has 4 different layers of colored water. Since you mixed in different amounts of sugar in the glasses, you created different water densities.

tiny rocket

Tiny Rocket

You'll need:

  • a photo film canister
  • an Alka-seltzer tablet
  • some blu-tak
  • water

Follow these steps:

  1. Remove the canister's lid and stick some blu-tak on the inside part. Then, stick the Alka-seltzer tablet on it.
  2. Pour water into the canister until it's half-full then close the lid.
  3. Turn the canister upside down and stand back as the rocket launches!

Here's an explanation:

When you turn the canister upside down, the water meets the Alka-seltzer. When that happens, it dissolves and releases carbon dioxide. And since the canister is airtight, the pressure builds inside it until it pops!

 

This is it. We hope you try some of these at home!