When you make learning a fun activity, kids tend to enjoy more, gauge information in a better manner and look forward to learning more new things. One way to do this is by doing simple and fun science experiments at home during the COVID-19 lockdown.
We have put together 5 fun science experiments that can be done using items lying around the house and with no fuss of creating a mess.
Required: Magnifying glass, large glass bowl, water, small rock and large green leaf
In the large glass bowl, place the leaf, pour in water till the bowl is half full, place the small rock on top of the leaf and leave the bowl in a sunny spot for a few hours. When you come back to check on the bowl, you will notice small bubbles have formed which were created due to the oxygen released during the process of photosynthesis. You can use the magnifying glass to see the bubbles if it’s not visible with the naked eyes. This way, children can learn how plants release oxygen that is essential for humans and animals to live and in return, how we release carbon dioxide that is an essential element in the process of photosynthesis.
- Density of Liquids
Required: A tall glass, water, oil, dish soap, milk and honey
This is a super-easy experiment to teach kids about the concept of density and how all liquids do not mix together. In a tall glass, start with pouring some water into the glass. Next, slowly add in the same quantity of oil from the side. You will notice that instead of getting mixed with the water, the oil floats on top since it’s less dense than water. Similarly, add in other liquids like dish soap, milk and honey to see what floats, what sinks and what mixes together!
- Celery Science Experiment
Required: Few leafy celery stalks (the inner stalks work best), water, cups and food colouring.
For this simple experiment, add food colouring to each cup of water. Then add the celery stalks. Cut about an inch off of each stalk before placing it in water. After 24 hours the leaves will have changed colour to match the water. This is because the tiny tubes (xylem) in the plant drink up the water just like a straw. This process is called transpiration. If you look at the capillaries you will see they now match the colour of the water they were in.
- Homemade Glue
Required: Flour, water and saucepan
What if you run out of store-bought glue? You can always make some at home for the kids. What you need to do is mix flour and water till it has a pancake batter-like consistency. You can also beat it with a whisk to get rid of any lumps and make it completely smooth. Pour this into a saucepan and heat it on medium flame. Constantly stir and bring this to a boil before taking it off the heat. Let it completely cool down before using it. The glue is not a strong adhesive but is good enough for sticking decorations, arts and crafts together that will last for a few hours.
- Invisible Ink
Required: Small bowl, cotton swab, lemon juice, white construction paper and blow dryer
Ever wondered why apple slices get brown when left in the open or metal objects get rusty? It’s all about oxidation and here is how you can teach kids about the process in a super simple way. Fill a small bowl with lemon juice. Dip a cotton swab in this and then start writing or drawing on the white construction paper. You will notice that everything gets absorbed by the paper and hence, ‘disappears’. Now, to bring this invisible ink back to life, use a blow dryer on the paper. The words or drawings will start appearing in a slightly brown tint. This is due to oxidation. The blow dryer heats the lemon juice which in turn releases carbon dioxide. When the carbon dioxide comes in contact with the air, it activates the process of oxidation and that’s how you end up seeing the things on the paper.
We hope by doing these experiments, the kids not only walk away by having lots of fun but have also learnt something new from it while they are stuck at home amid the coronavirus outbreak.
“All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson