Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Explosive fun!

Wednesday is Science day at our house.  We love trying out new experiments and watching what happens.

Ian has had a few science experiment books lying around and we've slowly been buying the supplies we need to run these experiments.  I asked him what experiments he'd like to try.



Ian first wanted to make a skateboard rocket car.

We saw this idea in Steve Spangler's book Fire Bubbles and Exploding Toothpaste and Ian has been dying to try it.

These books are fabulous! 

This experiment is just like making the soda geysers using diet soda and a roll of Mentos the only difference is that you tape the soda bottle to a skateboard and when the soda jets out of the back the force is supposed to make the skateboard move in the opposite direction.

Ian read all the directions and pulled out all the materials we needed.  He understood what we needed to do and so I set him to work.

He built up a platform to put the soda bottle on (so the jet stream of soda cleared the back of the skateboard) and we duct taped the bottle in place.


Taping it all in place
For once we managed to get the whole roll of Mentos in before the soda erupted but we were extremely disappointed that the skateboard didn't move.  At all!  It didn't even rock a bit.

 We're not sure where we went wrong with the experiment but the boys definitely want to try again.  I think next time we'll buy a few bottles of soda and a couple of rolls of Mentos. 

Not to be daunted by one failed experiment the boys quickly moved onto experiment #2.

Ian has been dying to make fizzy rockets.

He made them with his class when he was in second grade and had been asking me to do this ever since.  It took me a while to find empty film canisters with snap on- lids (since we've all gone digital!) but I finally found a packet on Amazon.

I pulled out the book How to Build a Fizzy Rocket and we followed the directions.


completed rocket
Ian and Evan each made a rocket.  We took them outside and using 1 tsp. of water and 1/2 tablet of antacid we set our rockets off.


Zoom! there it goes! 
They had so much fun and we set them off so many times I lost count.  The paper rockets eventually fell apart because the construction paper got wet and soggy; the boys didn't care.

 In fact I was thanked by Alec for letting them use the clear canisters so they could see what happened.

They tried using different amounts of water, different sized antacid and even different temperatures of water.
See that white dot above the trees? That's the canister!

They had contests and tried to see which rocket would explode first and which would go the highest.  We played until we finally ran out of antacid tablets.


The canisters filling with foam.. about to launch
We had one last experiment we wanted to try.

We made exploding sandwich bags too.

We took a sandwich bag and put in 1/4 cup water, 1/2 cup vinegar and sealed it shut most of the way leaving just a small gap.  We then took 1 tsp. of baking soda wrapped in a toilet tissue square and carried everything outside.

We placed the toilet tissue with the baking soda into the bag, gave it a quick shake and finished sealing it.

nice and flat to start the experiment
We placed it on the ground and watched the bag grow and expand.

Unfortunately, our first bag sprung a leak and didn't explode.

We grabbed another bag (this time a freezer bag) and added more baking soda and vinegar to it.  This time we waited until we heard a "pop" and called our experiment a success.

Blowing up so much it stands up

The boys noticed that the bag didn't really break, the seal popped open, releasing all the pent up pressure.

We talked about why the bag would break open at the seal and not along any of it's sides first.  The boys determined that the bag was weakest there.

Such a fun day watching so many chemical reactions!

Linking Up With:



ethannevelyn.com


The Homeschool Post


Awesome Life Friday

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Two Tiny Hands

11 comments :

  1. Exploding things is always fun, no matter how old you are. We tried the exploding sandwich bags last fall. They scared my daughter, but she was only 3 then and thought they were going to be loud, bless her heart. lol We've done something similar to the rockets, but would love to try it again with actual rockets! How fun! #fabfridaypost

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    1. We did the exploding bags a second time adding paint to them and making colorful explosions. We used vinegar, cornstarch and liquid watercolors in the bags before adding the baking powder and they markings dried to look like abstract colored chalk on the driveway.

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  2. These look like so much fun! I was reading thinking 'I can't wait until the girls are older so we can do the skateboard' and then I saw the rocket. Wow! never mind waiting until they are older, I am doing it now! Haha

    Thank you for linking up with us on #FabFridayPost

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    1. It's a lot of fun! These are all experiments my boys never seem to tire of.

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  3. I was going to say this all looked like so much fun for boys, but then I realized my Gv would LOVE to do these things, too! #FridayFrivolity

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    1. Yep, I think this is one of those things that is equally fascinating to both boys and girls.

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  4. This kind of science experimentation is so fun - and they really do learn a lot! My girls would LOVE to do these. And they seem pretty easy - who doesn't have vinegar and baking soda? Thanks for sharing your day - gives me some ideas...
    ~Jess
    #FamilyFunLinky

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    1. Yeah, I love experiments that don't call for weird supplies. Quick and easy it typically my motto!

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  5. looks like a blast, no pun intended. Going to try this with my daughter, she'd love it #familyfun

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  6. That looks like loads of fun and learning potential. Can't beat explosive experiments especially since they chose these themselves!! ‪Thank you for linking up to the #familyfunlinky‬

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