Jared got a wonderful science kit from my parents as part of his Christmas present, and we sat down over the weekend and tested out the first few experiments.
The first one was called Dancing Powders. You mix a little bit of citrus acid and baking powder together, then add some water, and everything gets all bubbly. Looked a bit like a cup of Sprite after the bigger bubbling died down! My picture turned out blurry, so I don't have one of this experiment.
The next experiment was called Color Changing Liquids. We filled two cups partway with water and set them both on a plate. We added a tiny bit of red cabbage powder to each of the cups. It was suggested in the directions that we NOT stir the powder in right away, so we could see a "waterfall"
It even got really swirly looking!
After we stirred the red cabbage powder into the water, we ended up with two cups full of purple water. We added baking soda to one cup, and citrus acid to the next cup.
The one with baking soda mixed in turned blue
And the one with citrus acid mixed in turned red
We were then instructed to pour some of the red liquid and some of the blue liquid and mixed them together in a third cup. Can you guess what happened?
Red + Blue = purple, and baking powder + citrus acid = bubbles (carbon dioxide bubbles), SO the red liquid and the blue liquid mixed together turned into a purple bubbling liquid! (which truthfully didn't bubble nearly as much as the first time we mixed baking soda and citrus acid, but I believe that was due to the more diluted concentrations this time around)
It was at about this point that Jared loudly proclaimed this science kit was the coolest thing ever. *grin*
The third experiment was called Acid or Base? We prepared cups full of water and red cabbage powder, then put drops of other liquids from around the house into the cups in order to test of they were an acid or a base. As Jared found out, milk and Coca Cola are neutral, lemon juice is an acid, and dish soap is a base. He had a GREAT time adding drops and waiting for the color change to determine "acid or base?" We'll definitely have to run this experiment again with some other liquids!
The fourth experiment was called Colorful Jiggly Crystals. For THIS experiment, we again filled two cups partway full of water, but this time instead of adding the red cabbage powder FIRST, and then adding the baking powder and citrus acid, we were instructed to mix the baking soda into one cup and the citrus acid into the other cup BEFORE adding the red cabbage powder. Once the baking soda and the citrus acid cups were well mixed, we got to add the red cabbage powder.
The color change was IMMEDIATE! Remember how adding the red cabbage mixture to the water resulted in a purple "waterfall"? Look at the difference when you add the red cabbage powder AFTER mixing in the baking soda and the citrus acid!
After we stirred the red cabbage powder in thoroughly, we again mixed part of the red liquid with part of the blue liquid, so that we now had three cups of liquid: one red, one blue, one purple. The next step was to add in a small spoonful of polyacrylamide (pah-lee-uh-kril-uh-mide) crystals (which looked similar to rock salt!), and left them alone for a few hours.
After the time had passed, we were instructed to pour out any remaining liquid and see what was left in the cups. Colorful Jiggly Crystals!
The hard little crystals had absorbed a lot of the liquid, had grown several times their original size, and were now, truly, jiggly, intead of very hard.
Jared wanted to take the jiggly crystals for his sharing day Wednesday, so we stuck them in a ziploc bag and set them aside. The blue ones started turning more of a moldy green color, and then started turning brownish, so we tossed those ones, but he was able to share the red and purple crystals. I was pretty impressed he remembered they were called polyacrylamide crystals.
There are still several other experiments in the kit, and it seems as if the kit provides enough materials to run the experiments more than once, which is nice. Jared is already chomping at the bit to try out the rest of the experiments, and also to try out some of the experiments in the science book he got!