The Worth of a Challenge

If you give a child a fish, you feed him for a day.
If you teach a child to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.
But if you teach a child to learn, you feed him for a lifetime
and he doesn't have to just eat fish.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Kitchen Science: Solutions

I love using my kitchen for learning stuff. It provides a hands on experience with the best part being that the end result can be touched and or tasted. Today we talked about solutions and we didn't even need fancy pricey lab equipment. We made Koolaid and Jello and then one more solution to show insoluble solutions. 
  • 1 large pitcher
  • 1 packet of Koolaid
  •  enough cool water to fill the pitcher
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 package Jello(my kids wanted the yellow kind)
  • hot and cold water as per the directions on the box
  • a small jar
  • vegetable oil
  • food coloring(any color will work except for maybe yellow)
  • a recording sheet(just some lined paper will work well and the kind with a blank area at the top is even better.

First we went over some vocabulary and wrote it on our big chart paper
  • Solution: groups of molecules that are mixed up in a completely even distribution
  • solvent: does the dissolving
  • solute: is what is dissolved
First we made the Koolaid and we added the dry ingredients into the pitcher. Then, we added the water.
 Just keep stirring, stirring, stirring.....
 Then when it was all dissolved we recorded what happened on paper. Oh and we drank the experiment!

Next, we made the Jello and showed how we can use hot water to dissolve solutes. We also practiced our spelling by labeling our hot and cold water.
 We slowly added the Jello packet and stirred showing how the heat dissolved the gelatin
 Then we added the cold water to stop the heat and start the Jello to coagulate. And now it's chilling in the fridge till desert time after dinner.

The last solution we made was in a baby food jar. I added some water and some food coloring and then a small amount of oil. I showed the kids that no matter what we did the oil will not mix with water. Even with heat the oil will still rise above the water and separate. I let them shake it and examine it and they loved seeing the bubbles rise up.

For more information on this and other great science activities for kids, check out

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