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Kids Science Experiments To Do At Home

Even with school back on track, there’s still plenty of time where the kids are asking me what they can do because they are bored. We try to do outdoors activities as much as we can in our down time. But inevitably, the kids need more activities to do when we come home. We enjoy baking together a lot but they don’t have to worry about their waistlines. LOL. So this is why I thought I would get them into doing science experiments.

Doing simple science experiments at home with school aged kids is especially great if they are able to complete some of the steps by themselves or with little direction. The freedom and control helps build confidence while learning something new and exciting.

So I found 3 science experiments for the kids to try and they only require a few household items.

Walking Colors

Materials:          
  • 3 Cups (plastic or glass – I used mason jars)
  • Paper Towels – Rolled into a rope length wise
  • Food Coloring (Primary colors)
  • Water
Getting Set Up:
  1. Take 3 cups and pour water in 2 of the cups (fill water half full – or half empty, however you want to look at it haha).
  2. Add food coloring to the water (3-5 drops or more if you prefer a darker color). Red + Blue = Purple

Blue + Yellow = Green

Red + Yellow = Orange

3. Roll or fold 2 paper towels into a strip or rope and place one end of the paper towel into the water cup and drape the other end in the empty cup.

Wait for the water to start traveling up the paper towels as it drips into the empty cup it will make a new color depending on which two colors you decided to use.

You can use more cups with more colors by leaving one cup empty in between, making a rainbow of colors.

The Science Behind the Experiment

The water will travel up the paper towels through a process called Capillary Action. The paper towel is made from fibers and the water is absorbed through these fibers acting like capillary tubes and pull the water upward. This is what helps water climb from a plant’s roots to the leaves at the top of the plant or tree. The water will dip into the empty cup and if you are using food coloring in two cups you will see a new color appear in the middle cup.

Kids science experiment Walking Colors
Kids science experiment Walking Colors

Dancing Stick Figure in Water

Ever wished your drawings could come to life? Well now they can!

Though this experiment is typically done on a plate, I found a sink to be an easier clean up. Unplug and down the drain it goes! Its so much easier as my kids wanted to do this experiment over and over again, plus less mess! Be prepared to spend a lot of time in the washroom with your dry erase markers though!

Materials:

  • Dry erase markers
  • Water
  • A plate or a sink

Getting Set Up:

  1. In a dry sink or on a plate draw a stick figure or anything else your artistic talent allows for.
  2. Pour water into the sink/plate slowly and watch the figure lift off the surface and float. As the water continues to pour into the sink/plate it give the illusion that the figure is dancing in the water.

The Science Behind the Experiment:

The ink in a dry erase marker is insoluble, meaning that it does not dissolve in water. The ink is also oil based and since we know water and oil don’t mix together, the object will lift off the surface and float in the water. Because dry erase markers have an oil based ink, be careful not to get the marker on your clothing or towels as it will leave a permanent mark.

Kids science experiment using dry erase markers to create Dancing Stick in Water
Kids science experiment using dry erase markers to create Dancing Stick in Water

Colored Milk Art

Materials Needed:

  • Plate
  • Milk
  • Cotton Swabs
  • Food Coloring
  • Dish Soap (for best results use Dawn Dish Soap)

Getting Set Up:

  1. Pour milk (for best results use whole or 2% milk) into a shallow plate just enough to cover the bottom

2. Using food coloring drop different colors around the plate

3. Dip a cotton swab into dish soap and then dip the cotton swab into the plate with the milk/colors and watch the reaction.

The Science Behind the Experiment:

I’m sure that you are familiar with what dish soap does, it cuts through the grease. Since milk is made up of minerals, proteins and most importantly fats, the dish soap binds to the fat molecules found in milk. The food coloring shows you the movement of the dish soap searching for fat molecules. Keep dipping your cotton swab in the dish soap and back into the milk to see if any more fat molecules have been left behind.  For best results use milk with higher fat content for this experiment.

Kid's science experiment called Milk Art

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