Wednesday, May 24, 2017
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What Makes Ice Melt the Fastest, Salt or Sugar? Fun with Grandkids. As we approach winter again, salt will soon go down on icy roads. What Makes Ice Melt the Fastest, Salt or Sugar? Is salt really the best way to melt ice? Would sugar melt snow? Let’s find out by experimenting with some alternatives. Materials: Salt Sugar Pepper Dirt Ice cubes 10 small bowls Measuring spoon Instructions: Measure one teaspoon of salt into a small bowl. Continue with sugar, pepper, and dirt – one teaspoon of each ingredient per bowl. Put out 5 small bowls next to each of the bowls with ingredients Add an... (Read More ...)

Measuring Spoons (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Can You Dissolve More Sugar in Hot Water than Cold? Yes. What difference does temperature make when you dissolve sugar in water? Here’s an easy way to find out. Materials: Sugar Water Ice cubes 3 clear water glasses 3 teaspoons Measuring spoons Measuring cup Paper and pencil Instructions: Put three ice cubes into a water glass Pour 1 cup of cold tap water into the ice-filled glass Measure one teaspoon of sugar and pour it into the cold water Stir the cold water until the sugar dissolves Keep a count of and record how many teaspoons of sugar you add... (Read More ...)

How Does the Water Temperature Effect How Fast a Sugar Cube Dissolves? Does temperature matter when sugar dissolves? A bowl of white granulated sugar. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Does a sugar cube dissolve differently from granulated sugar? Let’s find out. Materials: 3 sugar cubes 3 tablespoons of granulated sugar Water A bowl of ice cubes 6 clear glasses 6 teaspoons 1-cup measuring cup 1-Tablespoon measuring spoon 3 small bowls Instructions with tap water: Pour 1 cup of room temperature water into each of two glasses. Pour 1 Tablespoon of sugar into one of the small bowls Put a teaspoon in... (Read More ...)

Plastic Wrap on a Bowl Make a Solar-Powered Water Still on a Window Sill. Desalinization is taking the salt out of water to make it drinkable. What if you had nothing but salt water to drink? Well, you can’t drink salty water. It will make you sick. But, if you have a way to distill, or desalinate the water, then you would have a clean drinking water supply. How would you do that and what would you need? Materials: Rock Glass Bowl Plastic wrap Salt Water Sunny window Food coloring, glitter, mud optional Instructions: Add two tablespoons of salt to 2 cups of water and pour into bowl Arrange... (Read More ...)

What Is Triboluminescence? Triboluminescence is the light produced when you crack crystals, like sugar or salt, or rip apart two surfaces, like tape on a roll. I’d been curious about it since I read in the How to Do Nothing with Nobody book that you could create light by pulling on a roll of friction tape. Experiments don’t always work the first time, or the first way. A Tape Dispenser I’d read in a number of places that Wintergreen lifesavers glowed in the dark if you chewed them. I even found a video that showed schoolchildren chewing on Wintergreen lifesavers in the dark and looking... (Read More ...)

What Is the Brazil Nut Effect? This is a great activity for Grandma and grandchildren. What happens if you shake up a can of mixed nuts? Brazil Nuts. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Do the Brazil nuts rise to the top? Do you still have any Brazil nuts left over from Christmas that you can shell? Materials: 1 cup peanuts 1 Brazil nut, shelled, whole 1 straight-sided, narrow drinking glass 1 cup water Instructions: Pour half the peanuts into the glass Set the Brazil nut on top of the nuts Pour the other half of the peanuts into the glass The glass should be about 2/3 full Cover the glass with your hand... (Read More ...)

What Is the Teapot Effect? 10-Minute science with your grandchildren. Do you get annoyed when you are pouring from a teapot and the tea dribbles down the spout to the table? The Utah Teapot (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Do you know why this happens? Do you know what to do about it? Today’s experiment shows your grandchildren how to pour without spilling and how to recognize a good teapot design. Materials: Teapots with various spout designs Drinking glass Milk jug Measuring cup Quart jar Large bowl Water Besides the teapots, find several other things to pour water out of and a bowl to pour water... (Read More ...)

How Is Hot Water Different from Cold Water? What does temperature have to do with density? Density refers to how close molecules are to each other. You can demonstrate that cold water is denser than warm. Food coloring spreading on a thin water film in the International Space Station. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Materials: 2 glass jars or glasses Food coloring Water Ice Optional: Cherry pits Q-tips Instructions: Fill one jar or glass with water as hot as you can get it from the tap Fill the other glass with half a dozen ice cubes and water as cold as you can get it from the tap. Drop a few... (Read More ...)

Why Doesn’t Water Spill When You Add Pennies? If water rises when you put a boat in it, why doesn’t it spill over when you put pennies in a jar filled with water? This is the difference between displacement and surface tension. Today, we have three activities. One will demonstrate displacement. Two will demonstrate surface tension.   Activity #1: Displacement Spout as the result of a water drop and surface tension (Photo credit: Wikipedia Materials: Jar (a glass works also) Tape (masking tape works fine) 100 pennies (marbles also work) Water Instructions: Half fill a glass with water. Put... (Read More ...)

Water striders using water surface tension when mating. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Pepper Scatter. Fun with Grandchildren. This activity shows surface tension on water and how to break it. Materials: Bowl Water Pepper (freshly ground or powdered should both work) Toothpick Soap or dishwashing detergent Instructions: Put enough water in bowl to fill the bottom Pour pepper gently across the surface of the water Stick one end of a toothpick into the soap Gently put the soapy end of the toothpick into the water near the pepper. What Should Happen? The pepper flakes should scatter anywhere you touch... (Read More ...)