Whether you want to entertain your kids, inspire your teens, or impress your guests, simple, at-home chemistry experiments are an educational way to have fun!
And, you won’t need to stock up on strange potions or set up your own lab to show how cool science can be either. Many of the best chemistry experiments for kids use everyday products most of us already have at home in our cupboards.
Ready to start a chemical reaction? Keep reading to find out how!
1. Mentos Eruption
In the lab, serious scientists perform cool chemistry experiments with the help of these products and a wealth of knowledge. At home, however, Mentos and diet soda are enough to make things go with a bang.
Non-toxic components mean that this experiment is perfect for kids, but it can get messy so it’s best to do it outside. All you need is a stack of Mentos placed in a cardboard tube and a 2-liter bottle of diet soda. Open the soda and drop the Mentos in all at once, then stand back and admire the eruption! Fun chemistry experiments don’t get much better than this!
2. Invisible Ink
If you’d prefer your chemistry experiments at home to be a little less sticky, why not try making invisible ink? To make your ‘ink’, mix equal parts water and baking soda then write your message on white paper using a toothpick or paintbrush. Once the ink has dried, you can reveal the message using a lightbulb, by ironing the paper, or by painting it with purple grape juice concentrate.
3. Pretty Pennies
Looking for easy chemistry experiments to wow your kids? Try this one with a pocketful of dull pennies and show them how acids help copper coins sparkle again. All you need to do is mix a quarter cup of vinegar with a teaspoon of salt in a plastic bowl. To start, dip the dull pennies in the solution to see how it works its magic. Then, pour all the pennies in there and watch them get cleaner.
4. Cabbage Chemistry
This easy chemistry experiment uses red cabbage water as an indicator for acids and alkalis. To try it for yourself, place four red cabbage leaves into a plastic bottle half-filled with hot water, then screw on the lid and shake it. Leave the resulting purple water to cool then strain it and top it up with cold water.
Now, the fun part! Take seven plastic cups and place a small amount of household substances in each. These should range from very acidic (e.g. powdered toilet cleaner) to very alkaline (e.g. dishwasher liquid). If arranged in order, pouring a little cabbage water into the cups should create a rainbow of colors from acidic cherry red through neutral purple to super alkaline yellow.
5. Density Tower
Show the different densities of liquids by creating a colorful density tower. To make one, fill an empty glass jar, in order, with honey, corn syrup, liquid soap, colored water, vegetable oil, rubbing alcohol, and lamp oil. Going slow will avoid unwanted mixing, while pouring dense liquids like honey over the back of a spoon can stop them from sticking to the side of the container.
Try These Chemistry Experiments for Yourself
From demonstrating densities to writing secret messages in homemade invisible ink, big kids and little kids alike are sure to find these chemistry experiments as entertaining as they are enlightening!
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