I decided to put together a kitchen chemistry class to allow them to put their new knowledge to the test.
I googled some ideas and came up with a couple I thought would work well.
- We made our own indicator to test the pH of different household products: an orange, olive juice, hot sauce, baking powder, contact solution, hairspray, and more. It was fun guessing what color the indicator would turn to, and we were often surprised by the results.
- We made tortillas and salsa. The baking powder in the tortillas causes a chemical reaction, and the tomatoes in the salsa are very acidic–both lessons in chemistry.
We had a great time but, of course, the best part of all was eating the tortillas and salsa.
FOOD SCIENCE EXPERIMENT
One day, while reading a cooking book, my daughter, who has a deep dislike for science, said, “I know what I want to do! I want to do an experiment in the kitchen by making cupcakes and leaving one ingredient out of each cupcake. I’ll write down a hypothesis beforehand and then record my findings after the muffins have been baked and tasted.”
She was so excited about doing food science that I encouraged her to start immediately.
Into the kitchen she went. She pulled out 12 bowls, divided the muffin recipe into 12ths, made a note by each bowl as to which ingredient was missing (for instance, one bowl was missing flour, another salt, and so forth), and had the twelve individual muffins whipped up in no time.
After observing and tasting the finished muffins, she wrote her findings down next to her hypothesis. She had so much fun doing this experiment and plans to enter it in our local science fair.
ISEF WORLD FINALS SCIENCE COMPETITION
Some time ago we attended the ISEF World Finals Science Competition. It was so fun to see kids from around the world dressed in their customary clothing and speaking their native language. We enjoyed visiting with many of them about their projects. What science competitions are offered in your area?
My kids love keeping science notebooks where they draw pictures and record what they have learned.
DISSECT OWL PELLETS
Dissecting owl pellets isn’t for everyone, but my son loves it!
It’s fascinating to be able to identify the different animals in the findings.