Science Experiments With Suma

Suma is at it again – see what scientific experiments she gets up to today!

Experiment #1: BALLOON POWERED LEGO CAR

YOU WILL NEED:

  • Basic Lego bricks
  • Balloons
  • Straws
  • Tape

DIRECTIONS:

  • Cut a straw in half and insert it into the end of a balloon. Tape the balloon to the straw, creating a tight seal.
  • Build your car. Include an opening that will secure your straw.
  • Blow up your balloon using the end of the straw and either pinch the end of the straw until you’re ready to let go, or let go immediately

How far did you car travel? If you’re competing against someone else (perhaps a puma?!), you can grab a tape measure to see whose car went the farthest!

Some questions that you might want to ask yourself as you enjoy this experiment are:

  • Why do you think one car was slower than another?
  • What would happen if we tried it on a bumpy surface or on carpet?
  • What would happen if the balloon is blown up more or less?

Experiment #2: STORM IN A GLASS

YOU WILL NEED:

  • A spoon
  • Water
  • Food coloring
  • Shaving cream
  • A large glass

DIRECTIONS:

  • Fill the glass half full with water.
  • Place some shaving cream on top of the water until the glass is about 3/4 full.
  • Use a spoon or your finger to spread the shaving cream evenly over the top of the water, making sure the shaving cream is flat.
  • In a separate container, mix 1/2 cup water with 10 drops of food coloring. Gently add the colored water, spoonful by spoonful, to the top of the shaving cream. When it gets too heavy, watch it storm!

Suma had some questions about how/why this experiment works, so we checked out a couple of library books about the weather and found an answer for her! It turns out that clouds in the sky hold onto water – In fact, they can hold millions of gallons of water! In this experiment, the layer of shaving cream is our pretend cloud…And guess what?! – The shaving cream layer can also hold onto water! Eventually clouds get too heavy because they can’t keep storing more and more water forever. When that happens, the water falls out (precipitates) as rain, sleet, hail or snow.

Experiment #3: ELEPHANT’S TOOTHPASTE

YOU WILL NEED:

  • Safety goggles
  • Dry active yeast
  • 6% (20 volume) hydrogen peroxide (you will need to find this online or at a beauty salon supply store)
  • Dawn dish soap
  • Funnel
  • Narrow necked bottle
  • Warm water
  • 9×13 casserole dish or similar large container

DIRECTIONS:

  • Measure 1 teaspoon of yeast into 2 tablespoons very warm water. Mix well.
  • Add 1/2 cup of 6% (20 volume) hydrogen peroxide into the narrow necked bottle (For safety purposes, an adult should perform this step).
  • Add food coloring and a few squirts of Dawn dish soap to the bottle. Carefully swirl the ingredients (another job for a caring adult).
  • Place your bottle in a casserole dish or similar large container to catch the elephant’s toothpaste, then add the yeast mixture using a funnel. Remove the funnel quickly and enjoy the show!

Suma was really tempted to use the elephant’s toothpaste on her own sharp fangs, but we told her that it’s dangerous to eat one’s experiment!