Contributed by Guest Author: Catherine Ross
These are 5 perfect classroom science experiments for kids that can either be done by them with your assistance or by you to demonstrate some cool science concepts to them!
1. Measuring heartbeats
Do you know heartbeats increase considerably when somebody exercises or does strenuous work like lifting a bucket, walking, talking at a stretch, etc. But, how can you measure somebody’s heartbeat without a stethoscope? Here is a way that kids can measure their own and their classmates’ heartbeats.
- Empty toilet paper roll (the thinner rolls, not the fatter ones)
- Duct tape
- Insert the funnel into one end of the toilet paper roll and tape them together with duct tape.
- Make sure there isn’t any gap or empty space between the toilet roll and the funnel.
- Put the funnel firmly on the left side of the chest of another student. Ensure the funnel is flat against the chest.
- Put your ear to the hole at the other end of the roll and listen carefully.
- Use the stopwatch to measure the heartbeat per minute.
- Try measuring the heartbeat of a friend who has just come back from the field.
- Measure the heartbeat of an old family member.
- Measure the heartbeat of an infant.
- Do the heartbeats differ from one situation to another?
2. Digestion diagnosis
Do you feel bloated when you eat too much? What do you do when you feel uneasy after a heavy meal? This is a science experiment to test the effectiveness of an antacid on your full tummy! Conduct the experiment with classmates to compare your results.
- 2 drinking glasses – one empty and another with any crushed antacid tablet
- A few drops of liquid dishwashing detergent
- Place the two glasses next to each other.
- Add a few drops of liquid detergent to both.
- Fill them up to the brim with water.
- Let them stay for some time.
- Put a straw in each of the glasses.
- Slowly, blow through the straw in the glass without the antacid.
- Next, blow through the straw in the glass with the antacid.
- What do you notice?
Here are a few variations that you can bring about to compare and test the results with your peers.
- Repeat the science experiment with another brand of antacid tablet.
- Replace liquid detergent with its powder variant.
- Let the solutions sit for an hour before you start the experiment.
3. Making your own toothpaste
This science experiment will allow students to make usable toothpaste from minerals such as calcium carbonate and sodium bicarbonate.
- Calcium carbonate
- Baking soda (find out what is its scientific name. Hint – it’s another bicarbonate!)
- 1 small plastic cup for each group
- A popsicle stick for each group
- 1 eye dropper for each group
- 1 plastic spoon for each group
- Several food flavors like mint, apple, cinnamon, etc.
- Divide the class into small groups.
- Distribute the supplies (plastic cups, popsicle sticks, eye droppers, and plastic spoons) among each group.
- Add 1/2 teaspoon calcium carbonate and 1/4 teaspoon sodium bicarbonate in each plastic cup and mix with water to make a smooth paste.
- Have the students taste the mixture. Ask them to mix it further to bring about the right consistency.
- Now, instruct the students to use the remaining water and flavors to their mixtures and come up with the most saleable toothpaste.
- Have them submit their experiment results so that you can award the team for making the best toothpaste!
- Try various flavors and experiment with the quantity of water to come up with the best combination and consistency.
4. Building a weather station
Help the students make a weather station in the lab!
- Two alcohol-filled air thermometers – Check they read exactly the same temperature when placed next to each other, away from direct sunlight
- Clear tape
- Hollow cotton shoelace
- A two liter bottle
- Distilled water
- Relative humidity chart
- Heat an awl and drill a hole on one side of the bottle at about an inch away from the bottom.
- Cut off the tips of the shoestrings and cut about a couple of inches of the string and place it over one of the thermometer bulbs. Seal it with thread.
- Position the bulb of the thermometer vertically about 1/8th inch above the drilled hole and tape it with the bottle. Tape the other thermometer also parallel to the first one, about 1/4th inches away from it.
- Push the shoelace through the hole to secure it and pour room temperature water into the bottle till it reaches just below the hole.
- Wait for 15 minutes to read the thermometers. Use the chart below to calculate relative humidity.
- Keep the thermometer in the lab for the students to use.
- Vary the temperature of the water to test if your observations change.
5. Play dough volcano
This is a great science experiment for kids in kindergarten. They will be thrilled to watch the results and will come back to you with plenty of questions!
- Baby lotion
- Baking soda
- Crushed cereal or food coloring
- Transparent plastic cups
- Fill a small paper cup with baking soda and slowly add water to it. Add little water at a time to get the right consistency.
- Add food color and continue mixing. Start mixing the lotion and go on stirring with bare hands till you form play dough that’s suitable to be molded.
- Pour vinegar into a plastic cup and put in a few hand rolled play dough balls.
- Kids will be thrilled to watch the volcanic eruption of play dough and vinegar!
- Experiment with the size of the cups and the quantity of play dough balls that you’re adding.
Aren’t these science experiments for kids super easy to be conducted in the classroom? So, what are you waiting for? Procure the supplies, get your hands messy, and dive right into science!
About Catherine Ross
Catherine Ross is a full-time stay-at-home-mum who believes learning should be enjoyable for young minds. An erstwhile elementary school teacher, Catherine loves coming up with creative ways through which kids can grasp the seemingly difficult concepts of learning easily. She believes that a ‘fun factor’ can go a long way in enhancing kids’ understanding and blogs at http://kidslearninggames.weebly.com/.