So, we're back to doing science experiments this year. We did them a few years ago, but took this last year off for biology studies. The kiddos really enjoy these experiments, and they're super easy to put together. Otherwise, let's face it, I probably wouldn't bother.
I picked up this Janice VanCleave book, Chemistry For Every Kid. You can get the hardback on Amazon for under $3. Fer reals.
Aside: we also have the Janice VanCleave Math For Every Kid, which is really good for explaining basic math concepts to kids (grades 3-8). Janice is also a Houston, TX native so, we're keeping it local here.
With the chemistry book, there are over 100 basic experiments covering a variety of topics.
I choose about 8 to do at a time. I type up a notebook page template sheet that has the name of the experiment, a one line description, a large space for the kids to draw a picture of the experiment, a few blank lines for them to write what happened, and a short paragraph describing why this AMAZING THING occurs.
I'm basically copying all this verbatim from the chemistry book.
So, for each experiment, each kiddo gets a corresponding notebook page to fill out while we're doing the experiment. We then put these notebook pages in our science journals after we're done.
So, for example, in the picture above, in the two small wine glasses, we actually have apple juice and pineapple juice in the glasses. Along with vinegar. The experiment is to test for the presence of iron and have it settle in hardened form on the bottom of the glass.
The coke and salt...well you can imagine what happens there. My 12yo daughter was so impressed with that experiment she posted the video on Instagram.
INSTAGRAM! (It's almost like I'm a celebrity)
In the penny experiment above, we have pennies coated with vinegar to see how fast they turn green!
Lightening speed, people, lightening speed...
And in this cool experiment, called Naked Egg, we learned how to take the shell off an egg without cracking it!
OMG it's like MAGIC
I only pick experiments that use household items we have on hand. Most of the ones in this book require salt, baking soda, vinegar, bleach, fruit, sodas, etc. Like I said, anything that requires a trip to the store or super advanced planning probably ain't gonna happen here. Another reason to love love this book book.
Anyway, my kiddos enjoy science and it's so easy to set these up I don't mind indulging them in a little chemical fun every now and then.
If only school WAS fun, right? wink wink.