Setting up for Science!

Next week, you will have the chance to set up and conduct your own science experiments. In order to do this, you will need a plan and the materials to be used in the experiment.

This week, select an experiment to do in school by looking at the websites below or by looking at books that you find at home or in the library. Select an experiment that will be simple enough to do and that will give you the chance to think and work like a scientist. Don’t just choose experiments that are “fun” but which don’t really seem to be that scientific.

Make a comment to tell us which experiment you want to do, where you found it and what materials you will need.

Why not try some experiments this weekend – you have four days off school! Blow us away by being scientists at home and share what you do on Flickr.

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  1. September 26, 2011 at 3:20 pm

    I want to try this experiment because it sounds and looks very intresting.

    http://www.exploratorium.edu/science_explorer/sparker.html

    I will need

    – scissors

    – Styrofoam tray

    – masking tape

    – aluminum pie tin

    • Mr. Sam
      September 26, 2011 at 4:04 pm

      Why does it sound and look very interesting?

  2. Pan
    September 26, 2011 at 3:57 pm

    I want to try this experament becasue it sounds very interesting. My scientific question is why does fizzy stuff burst and bouces in a plastic bottle.
    http://www.sciencekids.co.nz/experiments/easylavalamp.html
    Things I’ll need:
    What you’ll need:

    •Water
    •A clear plastic bottle
    •Vegetable oil
    •Food coloring
    •Alka-Seltzer (or other tablets that fizz)

    Instructions:

    1.Pour water into the plastic bottle until it is around one quarter full (you might want to use a funnel when filling the bottle so you don’t spill anything).
    2.Pour in vegetable oil until the bottle is nearly full.
    3.Wait until the oil and water have separated.
    4.Add around a dozen drops of food coloring to the bottle (choose any color you like).
    5.Watch as the food coloring falls through the oil and mixes with the water.
    6.Cut an Alka-Seltzer tablet into smaller pieces (around 5 or 6) and drop one of them into the bottle, things should start getting a little crazy, just like a real lava lamp!
    7.When the bubbling stops, add another piece of Alka-Seltzer and enjoy the show!

    What’s happening?

    If you’ve tried our oil and water experiment you’ll know that the two don’t mix very well. The oil and water you added to the bottle separate from each other, with oil on top because it has a lower density than water. The food coloring falls through the oil and mixes with the water at the bottom. The piece of Alka-Seltzer tablet you drop in after releases small bubbles of carbon dioxide gas that rise to the top and take some of the colored water along for the ride. The gas escapes when it reaches the top and the colored water falls back down. The reason Alka-Seltzer fizzes in such a way is because it contains citric acid and baking soda (sodium bicarbonate), the two react with water to form sodium citrate and carbon dioxide gas (those are the bubbles that carry the colored water to the top of the bottle).

    Adding more Alka-Seltzer to the bottle keeps the reaction going so you can enjoy your funky lava lamp for longer. If you want to show someone later you can simply screw on a bottle cap and add more Alka-Seltzer when you need to. When you’ve finished all your Alka-Seltzer, you can take the experiment a step further by tightly screwing on a bottle cap and tipping the bottle back and forth, what happens then?

    Pan

    • Mr. Sam
      September 26, 2011 at 4:06 pm

      This looks like an interesting experiment.

  3. Pat
    September 26, 2011 at 3:58 pm

    I am very intrested in making an volcano explode because I once did it and it was very cool because the lava just exploded out.

    Ingredients:

    • Salt dough:

    – 6 Cups Flour
    – 2 Cups Salt
    – 4 TBSP Oil
    – 2 Cups Water
    • Plastic soda bottle (2 litre works best)
    • Baking sheet
    • Warm water
    • Red food colouring
    • 6 Drops Liquid dish detergent
    • 2 TBSP Baking soda
    • Vinegar

    Instructions:

    1. Create a “salt dough” by mixing ingredients in a large bowl. Mix with your hands until the dough is smooth and firm. Add a little bit more water to the mixture if needed.

    2. Stand the clean soda bottle in the middle of the baking sheet. Mold the salt dough around the bottle, making sure that you don’t cover up the bottle mouth (the hole at the top) or drop any dough into the bottle. Take your time and build the volcano of your dreams…

    3. Fill the bottle most of the way with warm water mixed with a little of the red food colouring.

    4. Add liquid dish detergent into the bottle.

    5. Add baking soda to the water/detergent mixture in the bottle.

    6. Slowly pour vinegar into the bottle and jump back!

    Notice the red “lava” that flows out of your volcano. This happens because of the baking soda and vinegar mixture. By mixing the two together you produce a chemical reaction in which carbon dioxide gas is created – the same gas that bubbles in a real volcano! The gas bubbles build up in the bottle, forcing the liquid “lava” mixture out of the bottle and down the sides of your volcano.

    • Mr. Sam
      September 26, 2011 at 4:07 pm

      Should be explosive!

  4. September 26, 2011 at 4:12 pm

    Hi everyone,

    I would like to do this experiment because it is very interesting and cool

    http://www.sciencekids.co.nz/experiments/invisibleink.html

    What you’ll need:

    Half a lemon
    Water
    Spoon
    Bowl
    Cotton bud
    White paper
    Lamp or other light bulb

    Instructions:

    Squeeze some lemon juice into the bowl and add a few drops of water.
    Mix the water and lemon juice with the spoon.
    Dip the cotton bud into the mixture and write a message onto the white paper.
    Wait for the juice to dry so it becomes completely invisible.
    When you are ready to read your secret message or show it to someone else, heat the paper by holding it close to a light bulb.

    What’s happening?

    Lemon juice is an organic substance that oxidizes and turns brown when heated. Diluting the lemon juice in water makes it very hard to notice when you apply it the paper, no one will be aware of its presence until it is heated and the secret message is revealed. Other substances which work in the same way include orange juice, honey, milk, onion juice, vinegar and wine. Invisible ink can also be made using chemical reactions or by viewing certain liquids under ultraviolet (UV) light.

    By Madhav 👿

    • Mr. Sam
      September 26, 2011 at 4:18 pm

      Why is it very interesting and cool?

  5. Zola
    September 26, 2011 at 4:29 pm

    Hi

    Here is the link

    http://www.sciencebob.com/experiments/rockcandy.php

    I will need

    A Chopstick

    A cup of water

    2-3 Cups of sugar

    Tall narrow glass

    I am making Rock Candy

    • Mr. Sam
      September 26, 2011 at 8:35 pm

      Why did you choose this experiment?

  6. daniel :)
    September 26, 2011 at 5:15 pm

    This is the link.
    http://www.sciencebob.com/experiments/magic_ketchup.php

    I will need.

    A 1 liter plastic bottle

    Ketchup pack

    Ans salt.

    • Mr. Sam
      September 26, 2011 at 8:36 pm

      Why did you choose this experiment? What is “Ans Salt?

  7. September 26, 2011 at 5:33 pm

    Hi Mr.Sam,

    Although I did this last year, I want to try “Make a Paperclip Float” again because this time, I want to investigate furthur and find out more about what’s really happening like ‘What exactly is surface tension.’ So instead of just saying “The paperclip floats because of surface tension.” I will have more to write about like ‘What is surface tension.’

    Here is the link: http://www.sciencebob.com/experiments/paperclip.php

    Materials:

    – clean dry paper clips
    – tissue paper
    – a bowl of water
    – pencil with eraser

    Steps/Process:

    1) Fill the bowl with water

    2) Try to make the paper clip float…not much luck, huh?

    3) Tear a piece of tissue paper about half the size of a dollar bill

    4) GENTLY drop the tissue flat onto the surface of the water

    5) GENTLY place a dry paper clip flat onto the tissue (try not to touch
    the water or the tissue)

    6) Use the eraser end of the pencil to carefully poke the tissue (not the paper clip) until the tissue sinks. With some luck, the tissue will sink and leave the paper clip floating!

    • Mr. Sam
      September 26, 2011 at 8:37 pm

      I love your explanation about why chose this experiment, Andrea. Scientists often repeat experiments thousands of times so that can learn more each time.

  8. September 26, 2011 at 5:41 pm

    I would like to do this.
    http://www.sciencekids.co.nz/experiments/quicksand.html
    ive always wanted to do this because ive never seen quicksand and ivee always been fascinated by it.
    I will need
    a cup of maize cornflour
    half a cup of water
    A large plastic container

    A spoon

    • Mr. Sam
      September 26, 2011 at 8:38 pm

      How can you make sure you really do this as an experiment and not just as a bit of fun?

  9. Yuki
    September 26, 2011 at 5:51 pm

    Hi everyone!

    I am doing the one about the lava lamp in the the top. It was very cool and it will be a outstanding science project. The link is http://www.sciencebob.com/experiments/lavalamp.php.

    I would need…

    A clean 1 liter clear soda bottle
    3/4 cup of water
    Vegetable Oil
    Fizzing tablets (such as Alka Seltzer)
    Food coloring

    • Mr. Sam
      September 26, 2011 at 8:38 pm

      How can you make sure you really do this scientifically

    • Billy
      September 28, 2011 at 5:29 pm

      Hey Yuki!

      I am doing the same thing as you are doing hi five!

      Billy

      • Pan
        October 1, 2011 at 4:51 pm

        I am doing that too

  10. Mari
    September 26, 2011 at 6:46 pm

    I think making a ballon rocket will be intersting because we can test which ballon can go far and I think this is intersting science because it is about air. Air is something that we breath in so I thought it will be interesting.

    This is the link
    http://www.sciencebob.com/experiments/balloonrocket.php

    I will need

    •1 balloon (round ones will work, but the longer “airship” balloons work best)
    •1 long piece of kite string (about 10-15 feet long)
    •1 plastic straw
    •tape

    • Mr. Sam
      September 26, 2011 at 8:41 pm

      Some of my students tried this one last year. They had real problems attaching the balloon to the straw. How do you think you can fix that problem?

  11. Tamanna
    September 26, 2011 at 8:20 pm

    Hello 6SS,

    I have the same book as Mr. Sam 101 cool science experiments I had a look into the book of what will be easy and interesting so when I read through and there was an awesome page that said paperclip overboard. I read through it and it was about how a paper clip can float on water. I wanted to do this because I want to try making a paperclip float because it sinks down right to the bottom.

    for this experiment I will need:

    A bowl.

    water.

    paperclips.

    tissue paper.

    pencil with eraser.

    What to do in this water experiment

    1. Fill the bowl with water.

    2. Put the clean paper clip on to of the water. Try to make it float. does it float? No so take it out.

    3. Tear a piece of tissue about half a size of a 20 baht note.

    4. Gently drop the tissue paper flat onto the surface of the water.

    5. Carefully place a dry paperclip flat onto the tissue paper. Try not to touch the water or the paper.

    6. Use the end of the pencil to carefully push the tissue ( not the paperclip) until the tissue sinks. What will happen to the paperclip.

    WHAT HAPPENS!!! THE PAPERCLIP STAYS AFLOAT!!!

    Why does this happen

    1. Surface tension keeps the paperclip floating. It’s like a layer of skin on the surface of water.

    2. The water molecules hold tight together. If the conditions are right they can hold tight enough to support the paperclip.

    3. If you want to make the surface of the water even stronger, try sprinkling some baby powder on it.

    I got all this awesome information from my book 101 cool science experiments!!!

    Tamanna

    • Mr. Sam
      September 26, 2011 at 8:43 pm

      This sounds excellent, Tamanna. I think Andrea is doing the same experiment, you can compare results and theories.

  12. Tammy
    September 26, 2011 at 8:42 pm

    Hi Mr.Sam

    I’ve decided to make a rocket because I want to see how rockets work and what makes it launch?

    How to launch a rocket

    I got it from this book called Big Book Of HOW

    The ingredients are:

    1.A plastic tennis ball can with lid or a plastic soda bottle with cap

    2.Three different type of straws: jumbo,super jumbo,and flexible

    3.large pencil

    4.Scissors

    5.Tape

    6.Paper

    Tammy

    • Mr. Sam
      September 27, 2011 at 3:51 pm

      This sounds interesting.

  13. Vin
    September 26, 2011 at 9:03 pm

    Hi,
    I want to do this experiment because I like to know how things move and this experiment demonstrates Newton’s third law of motion- Every action has an opposite and equal reaction. That’s true, because when you push something the force is transferred and it pushes you back. What I need:
    -a margarine[or butter] container
    -a balloon
    -a straw
    -a rubber band
    -Plasticine
    -scissors
    -something that will pierce the margarine container to make a hole big enough to fit a straw through.
    Here is the link: http://www.csiro.au/resources/balloon-boat-activity.html

  14. Mara
    September 27, 2011 at 3:28 pm

    Hi,
    I want to do this bubbularium. This experiment is something where you can see the amazing colours in bubbles. Here is the URL:

    http://www.exploratorium.edu/science_explorer/bub_dome.html

    Here is what you need to make it:

    small clear plastic lid (from yogurt or margarine container)
    clear plastic tape
    flashlight that works
    bubble juice (see recipe below)
    spoon
    straw
    room you can make dark

    • Mara
      September 27, 2011 at 3:47 pm

      Sorry, that was wrong I’m actually doing something else.

      Im doing a salt volcano, Its were you look at a glass of water and put the ingredients in and watch the water sizzle!

      Here is the URL: http://www.exploratorium.edu/science_explorer/volcano.html
      And here is what i need:
      A glass jar or clear drinking glass
      Vegetable oil
      Salt
      Water
      Food coloring (if you want)

  15. Yasmin
    September 27, 2011 at 3:36 pm

    Hi,
    I want to do a Bubble Bomb.This is an experiment where you use baking soda and vinegar to pop a plastic bag with the power of fizz. Here is the URL:

    http://www.exploratorium.edu/science_explorer/bubblebomb.html

    Here is what i need:

    water
    measuring cup
    zipper-lock plastic sandwich bags
    paper towel
    tablespoon
    baking soda
    vinegar

  16. Caitie : )
    September 27, 2011 at 3:43 pm

    Hi,
    I am going to make an old penny look new. I want to do it because I see my mom use salt and vinegar to clean.So I want to see how it works on a penny. And on other kinds of coins.

    This is the url.
    http://www.sciencebob.com/experiments/pennychem.php

    I will need.
    1 or 2 old American pennys.
    1/4 cup of white vinegar.
    1 tea spoon of salt
    A bowl
    paper towels

    Caitie D

  17. Jimin
    September 27, 2011 at 4:37 pm

    I’m going to make a black magic. It’s a science experiment about colors.

    Here’s the url
    http://www.exploratorium.edu/science_explorer/black_magic.html
    I need:
    scissors
    white paper coffee filter
    black marker (not permanent)
    water
    coffee cup or mug

    • Petanque
      September 27, 2011 at 6:51 pm

      hey JIMIN,

      I looked at that one too and I was going to do it but I remember that last year when I did science and I chose to do salt crystal but it didn’t really work because the maid threw it away so I want to try again. I also want to do it because last time I have a feeling that I put too much water.

      Petanque

    • September 28, 2011 at 7:49 pm

      Also I want to make my own rock candy and a slime.

      how to make a slime:

      Materials: cornflour, water. a bowl.

      Put the cornflour in the bowl. Put water in carefully.

      I already made a slime before.

      Rock candy: http://www.sciencebob.com/experiments/rockcandy.php

  18. Petanque
    September 27, 2011 at 7:03 pm

    HI GUYS,

    I chose to do this experiment because when I was in year 5 I did this experiment but we kind of failed because either the maid threw it away or it fell down. I want to do it again because I want to know whether it really works and how it will look like in the end.

    Grow Your Own Salt Crystals

    What you’ll need:

    A jar
    Water
    About half a cup of salt
    A spoon for stirring
    String
    Scissors
    2 toothpicks

    Instructions:

    Fill the jar with water.
    Add about half a cup of salt to the water.
    Mix the solution together with a spoon.
    Cut a piece of string with scissors and tie each end to a toothpick.
    Place the string over the top of the jar so that the string dangles into the middle of the solution and the toothpicks hang over the edge.
    Don’t forget to clean up when you’ve finished.

    What next?

    Leave the experiment and wait for salt crystals to form along the string. They are an excellent example of cubic crystals and you can do further research with them by examining them under a microscope.

    When you look at various crystals under a microscope you can examine the differences between them: Are they perfectly formed? What shape are they? What color? Can you see any microorganisms on the crystals?

    Crystals can be found grouped together as lots of small crystals or as huge individual crystals. They vary in size from those at the microscopic level all they way up to crystals that are meters in length!

    Try collecting a range of crystals for your project, label the different types and make a rock collection box to keep them in.

    I found this very good website for science:
    Grow Your Own Salt Crystals

    What you’ll need:

    A jar
    Water
    About half a cup of salt
    A spoon for stirring
    String
    Scissors
    2 toothpicks

    Instructions:

    Fill the jar with water.
    Add about half a cup of salt to the water.
    Mix the solution together with a spoon.
    Cut a piece of string with scissors and tie each end to a toothpick.
    Place the string over the top of the jar so that the string dangles into the middle of the solution and the toothpicks hang over the edge.
    Don’t forget to clean up when you’ve finished.

    What next?

    Leave the experiment and wait for salt crystals to form along the string. They are an excellent example of cubic crystals and you can do further research with them by examining them under a microscope.

    When you look at various crystals under a microscope you can examine the differences between them: Are they perfectly formed? What shape are they? What color? Can you see any microorganisms on the crystals?

    Crystals can be found grouped together as lots of small crystals or as huge individual crystals. They vary in size from those at the microscopic level all they way up to crystals that are meters in length!

    Try collecting a range of crystals for your project, label the different types and make a rock collection box to keep them in.

    I found another website which is good for science and not too hard.

    Grow Your Own Salt Crystals

    What you’ll need:

    A jar
    Water
    About half a cup of salt
    A spoon for stirring
    String
    Scissors
    2 toothpicks

    Instructions:

    Fill the jar with water.
    Add about half a cup of salt to the water.
    Mix the solution together with a spoon.
    Cut a piece of string with scissors and tie each end to a toothpick.
    Place the string over the top of the jar so that the string dangles into the middle of the solution and the toothpicks hang over the edge.
    Don’t forget to clean up when you’ve finished.

    What next?

    Leave the experiment and wait for salt crystals to form along the string. They are an excellent example of cubic crystals and you can do further research with them by examining them under a microscope.

    When you look at various crystals under a microscope you can examine the differences between them: Are they perfectly formed? What shape are they? What color? Can you see any microorganisms on the crystals?

    Crystals can be found grouped together as lots of small crystals or as huge individual crystals. They vary in size from those at the microscopic level all they way up to crystals that are meters in length!

    Try collecting a range of crystals for your project, label the different types and make a rock collection box to keep them in.

    I found another good website fro science, good, easy and simple.

    http://www.sciencekids.co.nz/experiments.html
    (I also found my experiment in this webiste: http://www.sciencekids.co.nz/projects/saltcrystals.html)

    Petanque

  19. September 27, 2011 at 7:44 pm

    I’m going to make a plastic milk because I think making a hard plastic to milk is pretty interesting. This is the link: http://www.sciencebob.com/experiments/plasticmilk.php
    I will need:One cup of milk
    4 teaspoons of white vinegar
    A bowl
    A strainer
    Adult help

  20. September 28, 2011 at 2:55 pm

    Sounds exciting!Will you post your experiments for your fans to see? 😉

    You might like to see some experiments by Year 6s in Australia. Here are some of them. You can fins more on the blog, if interested. http://blogs.scopus.vic.edu.au/6d11/tag/experiment/

  21. Billy
    September 28, 2011 at 5:25 pm

    Hi 6SS,

    My experiment is called Blobs in a Bottle:

    I will need:
    A clean 1 liter clear soda bottle
    3/4 cup of water
    Vegetable Oil
    Fizzing tablets (such as Alka Seltzer)
    Food coloring

    This is what I have to do in order:

    1. Pour the water into the bottle.

    2. Use a measuring cup or funnel to slowly pour the vegetable oil into the bottle until it’s almost full. You may have to wait a few minutes for the oil and water separate.

    3. Add 10 drops of food coloring to the bottle. The drops will pass through the oil and then mix with the water below.

    4. Break a tablet in half and drop the half tablet into the bottle. Watch it sink to the bottom and let the blobby greatness begin!

    5. To keep the effect going, just add another tablet piece. For a true lava lamp effect, shine a flashlight through the bottom of the bottle.

    These are some good questions I found to answer at the end:

    1. Does the temperature of the water affect the reaction?
    2. Does the size of the bottle affect how many blobs are produced?
    3. Does the effect still work if the cap is put on the bottle?
    4. Does the size of the tablet pieces affect the number of blobs created?

    Cheers,

    Billy

  22. Gina
    September 29, 2011 at 11:48 am

    Hi Guys
    I really want to know how to make a chicken sound inside a cup

    What you will need …
    * A plastic drinking cup
    * Yarn or cotton string (nylon string will not work well)
    * 1 paper clip
    * Paper towel
    * A nail
    * Scissors
    * Water
    What you need to do
    Cut a piece of yarn about 20 inches (40 cm) long.
    Ask an adult to use the nail to carefully punch a hold in the center of the bottom of the cup.
    Tie one end of the yarn to the middle of the paper clip.
    Push the other end of the yarn through the hole in the cup and pull it through as shown in the picture.
    Get a piece of paper towel about the size of a dollar bill, then fold it once and get it damp in the water.
    Now it’s time to make some noise! Hold the cup firmly in one hand, and wrap the damp paper towel around the string near the cup. While you squeeze the string, pull down in short jerks so that the paper towel tightly slides along the string. If all goes well – you hear a chicken

    And the link is http://www.sciencebob.com/experiments/chicken_cup.php

    • Gina Choi
      September 29, 2011 at 1:16 pm

      I got a better one and it is blobs in a bottle

      What you need…
      A clean 1 liter clear soda bottle
      3/4 cup of water
      Vegetable Oil
      Fizzing tablets (such as Alka Seltzer)
      Food coloring

      What to do…
      1. Pour the water into the bottle.

      2. Use a measuring cup or funnel to slowly pour the vegetable oil into the bottle until it’s almost full. You may have to wait a few minutes for the oil and water separate.

      3. Add 10 drops of food coloring to the bottle (we like red, but any color will look great.) The drops will pass through the oil and then mix with the water below.

      4. Break a seltzer tablet in half and drop the half tablet into the bottle. Watch it sink to the bottom and let the blobby greatness begin!

      5. To keep the effect going, just add another tablet piece. For a true lava lamp effect, shine a flashlight through the bottom of the bottle.

      And the link is http://www.sciencebob.com/experiments/lavalamp.php

  23. daniel :)
    October 1, 2011 at 5:12 pm

    I tried the magic ketchup thing but it did not work. So i tried the fizzy inflater.

    What i will need:

    a small plastic bottle.

    half a cup of vinegar.

    a small balloon.

    some baking soda.

    optional: a funel

  24. madhav
    October 2, 2011 at 4:08 pm

    I wanted to change my mind about the invisible ink science experiment because it is not that interesting. I want to do this experiment:
    What you’ll need:

    One egg
    Water
    Salt
    A tall drinking glass

    Instructions:

    Pour water into the glass until it is about half full.
    Stir in lots of salt (about 6 tablespoons).
    Carefully pour in plain water until the glass is nearly full (be careful to not disturb or mix the salty water with the plain water).
    Gently lower the egg into the water and watch what happens.

    What’s happening?

    Salt water is denser than ordinary tap water, the denser the liquid the easier it is for an object to float in it. When you lower the egg into the liquid it drops through the normal tap water until it reaches the salty water, at this point the water is dense enough for the egg to float. If you were careful when you added the tap water to the salt water, they will not have mixed, enabling the egg to amazingly float in the middle of the glass.

    By Madhav

  25. October 3, 2011 at 5:44 am

    I want to do the science experiment “Dissect a Disk” and all I will need is a butter knife and a 3.5 disk.

    This is the link to it:

    http://www.exploratorium.edu/science_explorer/dissect_disk.html

  26. 19aryana
    October 6, 2011 at 6:47 pm

    i want to make a coin disolve in coke i will need coke and a coin also a trrasprent glass i dont need. I thougt of it myselve because i dont have a tooth that i can use.
    step 1 open the coke can then pour it into the glass
    step 2 put hte coin into the glass
    step 3 observe whats happening.

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