Category Archives: Science in the Kitchen

Embracing The Mess

I know how hard it can be for some parents to let go, and let their kids/table/floors get dirty.  Believe me, I understand!  If the mess is outside, I don’t even think twice.  But, when the kids start to make a mess inside, it’s another story!

DSCN3700[1]Here’s what usually happens in my house:  

The girls do an experiment (say, for example the Wet and Dry experiments in the Science in the Kitchen book).  We’ll read the directions, talk about what we’re going to do.  The kids will make a hypotheses and fill in their science journal.  Once we’re done, they’ll start playing around with the plate full of colored sugar water.  Pretty soon, they’re asking for a cup with water and more sugar.  Then, they want to see what happens when they mix the food coloring with milk.  Then… it goes on and on (It’s like the If You Give A Mouse A Cookie book!).  

Once they’re done with the actual experiments, they usually play-to-learn for about another 30-60 minutes (until I cut them off because we have to clear the table for dinner).  When all is said and done, I have a table with spots of colored water, sugar crumbs on floor, and lots of additional dishes to wash.  The experiment didn’t start out this way, and it could have easily ended with a nice clean table.

But, do I really want it to end that way?

There’s usually an “aha” moment where I have to allow my “must not make a mess” self  to step back, realize that the kids are now entering into a different phase of their educational experience, and let them do a little unguided learning.

They’re learning, happy, and making a mess.  And I’m OK with that!

Experiments Using Invisible Ink

Writing secret messages to friends is so much fun!  To be honest, we were about to skip this experiment in our science kit, but after a bit of thought, decided it would be a quick and easy experiment to do before bed.  Quick and easy?  Well, it’s never quick and easy here, as one thing always leads to another!

We decided to try out the method suggested in Usborne’s Science in the Kitchen book.  This method suggests squeezing lemon juice into a bowl, writing on white paper with it, and then developing it with a warm iron.  We didn’t have a lemon on hand, so we used bottled lemon juice, and wrote on pieces of watercolor paper with a q-tip.

Here’s what we found out!

When the lemon juice dried, it was barely visible on the paper (perfect for sending super secret messages).  We developed it with an iron, it showed up a little bit.  Here’s what we ended up with:

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Lemon juice

Of course, since we didn’t get a great result, we had to do some research and figure out other methods for making invisible ink.  We found 3 other methods online:

Invisible ink with milk: We did the exact same thing with milk as we did with lemon juice.  The results were similar.  We found that spots of paper that were still damp from the milk got darker when we developed it.

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Milk

Water and baking soda: We mixed 1/4 cup baking soda with 1/4 cup water.  The downside to this method is that the spots where we wrote were bumpy, and could be read without developing, at the right angle.  When we put it under the iron, the writing was a bit darker and more consistent than the milk and lemon methods

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Baking Soda

White crayon and paint: The kids hypothesized that this would be the best method, with the best results.  To do this version of the experiment, all you need to do is write with white crayon on a white piece of paper.  To develop it, you go over the paper with watercolor paint.

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White crayon and watercolor paint

Utilizing the white crayon and paint method was clearly the best way to write and develop a secret message!  I think the wheels in their heads are spinning now.  I expect they’ll be asking for paper, envelopes, stamps, and addresses of their friends…

Like I said, one thing always leads to another!

Have you used a different method of writing with invisible ink?  What did you use, and how did it turn out?  

 

 

Making Bubbles

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My girls managed to conduct this experiment, learn, explore, and then continue to conduct their own experiments for nearly an hour!  It’s amazing how one simple experiment can capture the attention of a child!

To do this experiment, fill a cup 3/4 full with water.  Pour a few tablespoons of dish detergent in the cup (blue Dawn works best).  Gently stir.  Now, to make the loop, take a piece of thin, straight wire, and let your child form it into a circle (or square, or triangle, or…)

When your child(ren) are working on the Making Bubbles experiment, be sure to encourage them to try different things with the loop.  Do the bubbles blow differently when they change the shape of the loop?  What about the size of the loop?

What happens when they don’t blow on the thin spread of dish detergent, but make observations of it while it’s in the loop.  Can they see the different colors swirling around?  Do they notice anything particular that happens right before it pops?

Try this:  When the loop has the dishwasher liquid spread thinly within it, have them stick their finger through.  What happens?  Now, have them try dipping their finger in the bubble solution, and then stick it through the loop again.  They’ll be able to stick their finger through the loop without breaking the bubble!

 Fun fact: When the bubble film turns black right before it pops, it’s thinner then the shortest wavelength of visible light!!

Get a FREE printable here: Science With Bubbles
Supplies for the Making Bubbles experiment are included in our Kitchen Kit

 

It’s Here! Science In The Kitchen

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The Science Adventure Club team has been working really hard to bring you a fantastic product we are certain you and your children will love!  After our official launch, we found that our website wasn’t going to work with our goals, so we shut it down, and now reopened here.  Our kits are now exclusively available on Amazon!

Here’s what you’ll find in the Science Adventure Club Kitchen Kit:

  • The book Usborne Science Activities: Science in the Kitchen,
  • A journal so your budding scientist can record what he/she is learning,
  • Supplies needed to complete dozens of science experiments (over 85 items),
  • A certificate to mail in upon completion of the kit.  In return, they’ll receive a fun surprise!

This kit is perfect for homeschoolers, unschoolers, or any child in kindergarten through 5th grade that loves science.

As a special kick-off promotion, all kits ordered through March 31, 2013, will come with the book Usborne’s First Science Encylopedia (a $9.99 value)!

**Because we took the site down temporarily to upgrade, this “kick-off promotion” will run through April 15th!!***

This kit can be purchased exclusively through Amazon!

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00C8JKK3I

Welcome to Science Adventure Club


Hello and welcome to Science Adventure Club!  We are putting on the finishing touches, and will quietly unveil our first science kit within the next week.  We are so excited!  The first kit corresponds with the book Usborne Science Activities: Science in the Kitchen.  The kit will include:

The book Usborne Science Activities: Science in the Kitchen,
A journal so your budding scientist can record what he/she is learning,
Supplies needed to complete dozens of science experiments (over 85 items!).

What else can you expect from us in the near future?  A lot!  We’re beyond excited to bring to you:

Several new kits within the next few months,
Lots of fun blog entries with science experiments you can try at home,
Special promotions and giveaways as we launch the Science Adventure Club!

Stay tuned!