One of the great things about lockdown is that there’s a really great online community of teachers, creators and carers who have come together online to help parents teach from home. So many fantastic resources and creative ways of online learning has emerged, and the kids have gotten access to teachers and an education that they might never have gotten if it weren’t for online learning.
But a whole lot of what I’m seeing online is creative work. Yes, almost every kid loves art, but where are the classes for the maths whiz? The languages lover? The science kid?
With the kids home from school for another few weeks, digital content creator ‘The Soul Publishing’ is sharing some fun experiments from its most popular channels, to get those young minds whirring.
Featuring fire, ice and heavy objects, these are ideas that are best to get stuck into with parental supervision. Fun for all the family, all lockdown long!
The Soul Publishing's Brightside Pinterest channel has already been viewed by more than 850k people and their tasks are super exciting, particularly for slightly older children.
They are proving that science for kids isn't all about osmosis and the periodic table. Capture your kid’s imagination by bringing science to life, with some easy experiments you can enjoy with household items. Check out these simple experiments below that will surprise and delight and be sure to get a few laughs in these trying times.
For more ideas of inspiration for fun experiments, check out this video!
Hard boil an egg and wait for it to cool before peeling.
Place the shell-less egg in an egg cup and insert three small birthday candles in the top of the peeled egg.
Light the three candles and hold the opening of a vase with a neck just large enough to fit the egg over the flames.
The candles should be inside the vase and the top of the egg should be at the neck of the vase. Watch as the heat builds and sucks the egg into the vase like magic!
Small but mighty experiment
Place an stack two rolls of duct tape on top of one another.
Place the egg in the whole in the middle, ensuring that it doesn’t touch the floor. Place another roll of duct tape on top of the egg, ensuring that the top of the egg isn’t sticking out.
Next, place an evenly distributed weight atop the roll of duct tape on top.
Keep adding weights to see how much a small but mighty egg can withstand!
(This experiment works best when the combined weight of the objects placed on top is known, so it can be seen that a little fragile egg can withstand up to 22kgs!)
Vanishing cups experiment
Pour nail polish remover into a bowl, filling it up a quarter of the way.
Grab one Styrofoam cup and place it in the bowl with the nail polish remover.
Watch the cup disappear as the chemicals dissolve the Styrofoam!
Shape memory experiment
Grab a paperclip and unbend it from its shape – look out for the sharp ends!
Make it into whatever shape you like, get creative!
Put hot water into a bowl and drop your paperclip into it and watch as it refolds itself back into it original shape!
Nitinol, the material that makes up a paperclip, has shape memory, which the hot waters triggers and refolds!
Mixing water experiment
Get two of the same small glasses. Add warm water to one and cold water to the other.
Using food dye, colour the warm water one colour and the cold water a different colour.
Using a thick piece of card that is waterproof or laminated, cover over the glass full of warm water and press it down firmly with your palm before flipping the glass upside down on top of the glass of cold water, with the card still in between.
Slowly slide out the card, letting both glasses of water merge and watch how the warm water and cold water do not mix, each keeping their own colours!
Next, repeat the experiment, but put the cold water on top of the warm water instead and note what happens to the colours this time!
Spinning coins experiment
Stack two cans on top of each other and then repeat with two more cans a shoulder width apart.
Place a ruler across the top of both stacks to connect them and make a bridge-like structure.
Place one more can right beneath the centre of the bridge face down so that the smooth side is facing up.
Place a magnet on the centre of the bridge.
Pick up 5 small coins – ideally 1 or 2 cents – and hold them on the thin side, stacking them upwards. The base of the bottom coin should be on the single can under the bridge.
Watch the coins spin all together like magic!