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    Cool Science Project Ideas for Young Kids

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    Aside from reading books to learn about different things, doing hands-on activities is another effective way of teaching young children, especially about science. After all, science is all about describing what is happening in the world around us. Children are naturally curious, and while they are young, it’s good to maximize that curiosity so they will learn science concepts better.

    If your child is interested in the subject, they may have fun with STEM toys and science kits. But you don’t need to go to the toy store and buy something special to help them learn science at home. You probably have most of the materials sitting at home in your cupboards, drawers, and pantry.

    Doing science projects together is also a bonding activity for you and your kids on weekends. Instead of just watching TV and playing video games, you enable them to interact with the physical world around them. If you want your young kids to learn more about science, here are some wonderful science project ideas you can try with them:

    Skittles in Water

    If you haven’t tried the good old skittles experiment, you’re missing out! It’s a great way to teach kids the concept of food color and how it dissolves in water. It’s an easy, low-cost experiment that offers many investigative opportunities. It’s a must-try science experiment for kids of all ages!

    Supplies needed:

    • White plate
    • Skittles candy
    • Warm water

    Instructions:

    1. Place the skittles around the edge of the plate.
    2. Carefully pour warm water over the top.
    3. Watch the colors spread through the water.

    How it works:

    Skittles are coated in food coloring and sugar, and when you pour water over the skittles, the colored coating dissolves and then diffuses through the water.

    Egg in a Bottle

    Can a peeled, hard-boiled egg fit into a bottle without smushing into a big mess? Turns out it can! And your kids would say, “Wow! How did you do that?” Those are some of the most awesome things to hear as a parent. The trick is the burning paper in the bottle causes the air to expand and the pressure to go up. When the fire runs out of oxygen, the temperature cools, and air contracts, which causes the egg to be sucked in through the bottle opening.

    Supplies needed:

    • Hard-boiled egg
    • 1-quart glass milk bottle or any glass bottle with a mouth smaller than the egg
    • Lighter or matches
    • Piece of paper
    • Straw

    Instructions:

    1. Cut a strip of paper that’s narrow enough to fit in the bottle and long enough to end below the top when fully placed inside.
    2. Get your eggs ready, peeled, and nearby.
    3. Light a piece of paper and drop it inside the bottle.
    4. Quickly place the hard-boiled egg on top of the mouth of the bottle.
    5. Watch the egg pop inside the bottle.

    How it works:

    This is a classic experiment that shows the power of pressure. It looks like the egg is getting sucked into the bottle, but it’s just high-pressure winning over low-pressure. When the temperature goes up, the air pressure increases as well, like in a fixed environment like a bottle.

    Safety note: This trick is best done as a demonstration by adults and for the entertainment of the kids. Children must never use lighter or matches. Have the adult perform the part of the experiment that deals with using the lighter or match and burning the paper. Keep a fire extinguisher ready in case of emergency.

    Orange Fizz

    Who doesn’t like the taste of oranges? Or the feeling of fizzy soda in the mouth? This super easy experiment allows you to enjoy the taste of oranges and the bubbling of liquid without drinking orange soda.

    Supplies needed:

    • Oranges or clementine
    • Baking soda
    • Knife (optional)

    Instructions:

    1. Cut the orange into slices. Alternatively, peel them and separate them into sections.
    2. Dip a slice into the baking soda.
    3. Take a bite and chew.
    4. Feel it start to bubble in your mouth.

    How it works:

    When acids and bases mix, you can get exciting chemistry. Baking soda is a base, and orange is filled with citric acid. When the two mix, it makes carbon dioxide bubbles, which is the same one that makes soda so fizzy. It doesn’t taste good and it might cause a tummy ache if you eat a lot of it, so don’t try to eat the whole orange dipped in baking soda!

    Lava Lamp

    Oil and water with food coloring don’t mix; this experiment will help teach kids about density. For added coolness, you need to add an antacid tablet so bubbles would start to flow all around like a lava lamp.

    Supplies needed:

    • A clean plastic bottle with smooth sides
    • Water
    • Vegetable oil, mineral oil, or baby oil
    • Antacid tablet or any fizzing tablet
    • Food coloring
    • Funnel or measuring cup with a spout

    Instructions:

    1. Fill the bottle up to ¼-full of water.
    2. Using a funnel or a measuring cup with a spout, pour oil into the bottle until it’s almost full. Wait for a couple of minutes for the oil and water to separate.
    3. Add a few drops of food coloring. Watch as the color goes down through the oil.
    4. Break a fizzy tablet in half, then drop one half into the bottle. This is what produces the bubbly blobs.
    5. You can turn off the lights, then get a flashlight before dropping in another half tablet. Try to shine the flashlight through the lava lamp while the blobs are bubbling.

    How it works:

    The oil will float on top of the water because it’s lighter than water. The food coloring will sink through the oil and mix with the water because it has the same density as water. When you add a tablet, it will sink to the bottom and starts to dissolve while making carbon dioxide. This air is lighter than water, so it floats to the top, making bubbles and bringing colored water with it to the top.

    Shaving Cream Water Cycle

    Give your children a visual of the water cycle that they will never forget. This experiment will show how clouds hold invisible water vapors that turn into rain when the warm and cool air condenses the water vapors to rain.

    Supplies needed:

    • Glass vase
    • Shaving cream
    • Dropper
    • Blue food coloring

    Instructions:

    1. Fill the vase ¾ full of water.
    2. Fill the top of the water with white, foamy shaving cream.
    3. In a separate bowl, mix water and blue food coloring. Start adding colored water to the shaving cream using a dropper.
    4. Watch the cloud hold the colored water until it becomes too heavy. Once it does, the colored water will start to go down and mix with the water, making it look like rain!

    How it works:

    The shaving cream represents clouds and how they can hold water vapors for so long. When it becomes too heavy, it drops the water they hold and make it rain.

    Solar Eclipse

    A solar eclipse doesn’t happen very often, so try replicating it using a science experiment! This is a great way to teach them about what happens during an eclipse.

    Supplies needed:

    • Shoebox
    • Scissors
    • Black card
    • Yellow tissue paper
    • Toothpick
    • Tape

    Instructions:

    1. At each end of the shoebox, cut a window.
    2. Cut a slit across the width (on top) of the box’s lid.
    3. Cut out a square on the black card small enough to slide into the slit in the box.
    4. Cut out a circle from the middle of the card.
    5. Stick yellow tissue paper over the circle – this will serve as the sun.
    6. Stick the toothpick to the black card circle – you’ll use it as your moon.
    7. Slide the square of the black card into the slot on the box.
    8. Hold the box up the light and look through it to see your sun.
    9. Lower the black card circle to the slit of the box on top of the “sun” to mimic a solar eclipse.

    How it works:

    When you look through the box’s window, you’ll see an example of the sun. But when you start to lower the black card circle to the slit of the box, you will slowly see the sun disappear.

    Safety note: Don’t use this experiment to look directly at the actual sun. Looking at it can be harmful to the eyes. 

    Rainbow in a Glass

    Kids love rainbows, but it’s not every day that you can see them in the sky. For some people, a rainbow sighting happens very seldom in their lifetime. Try to make a rainbow of your own in a glass!

    Supplies needed:

    • Skittles candy
    • A clear glass
    • Water
    • A mug
    • 5 separate cups
    • A tablespoon
    • A dropper or pipette

    Instructions:

    1. Sort the Skittles into five separate cups in these amounts: 2 red, 4 orange, 6 yellow, 8 green, and 10 purple.
    2. Heat a mug of water in the microwave for 1 ½ minute.
    3. Measure and pour two tablespoons of hot water into each cup on top of the Skittles.
    4. Stir them carefully to avoid water splashes.
    5. Leave them to cool, and make sure to place them in a place where they won’t get knocked over. Stir them every 10 minutes or so until the skittles are dissolved, and the water is at room temperature.
    6. Using the dropper, add the colored water from the five separate cups to the clear glass. Start with purple, then add them in this order: green, yellow, orange, and red. The red must be on top, and the purple must be on the bottom – just like a rainbow. Go carefully here to prevent the layers from mixing.

    How it works:

    Skittles are mostly made of sugar; when you add hot water to them, the sugar dissolves, and the food coloring catches on to the water. The cup with only two red skittles doesn’t have as much sugar as the one with ten purple skittles, but both have the same amount of water. This made the purple water densest of them all, so all the other colors would float on top of the purple water.

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