We had a wonderful weekend.
Urgently needed weeding in the front garden turned into a spontaneous party of 8 under 5s who created a glorious mess stirring up fizzy potions on the front lawn.
By the end of the afternoon we had decimated our's and next door's supplies of vinegar, baking soda and food colouring (and dyed our paths in every colour of the rainbow!)
Before stocking up on more supplies, I had a quick check to see if anything else was running out in our "science kit". It's got over 50 items in it which can be used for hundreds of different static and magnet, potions, density and weather experiments.
Although, when I say "science kit" what I really mean - apart from a very few things - is the contents of the kitchen cupboards :-)
The lists below of both "magic" ingredients and equipment that you've already got in the house could honestly keep you entertained for a whole year and more of fun science experiments.
The only things that you might possibly need to buy specially are:
- Potassium aluminium sulfate (for making crystals) & hydrogen peroxide - although, you can use the hydrogen peroxide for planet friendly laundry and cleaning
- Soda drinks & sweets that you might not usually choose to keep in the house - i.e. bottle of diet coke, cans of diet & full coke, mint Mentos, marshmallows, Sweet Hearts, gummy bears
- Big bottles of cheap cooking oil & washing liquid as you need lots and lots to make fizzy potions, cool density jars and lava lamps
- A good strong pair of old fashioned balance scales - we have some plastic ones for children which are OK but you can't pile really interesting heavy stuff up in them
- A variety of different magnets (horse shoe & bar) including some really strong ones - you need bars for e.g. making compasses and some magnet experiments won't work with really weak ones aimed at children
Apart from that, you've got a life time worth of learning FREE in your kitchen cupboard!
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- Potassium aluminium sulfate (for making crystals)
- Hydrogen peroxide
- Lots of baking soda (bicarb of soda)
- Lots of white vinegar - check out this great list of 50 baking soda & vinegar experiments from Growing a Jeweled Rose
- Lots of food colouring
- Alka Seltzer
- Diet coke in bottle
- Cans of diet & full sugar cola
- Mint mentos
- Sweet hearts
- Gummy bears
- Pop corn
- Clear soda (any lemonade will do)
- Orange juice
- Dish washing liquid
- Shaving foam
- Vegetable oil (worth having a bottle of cheap stuff you might not want to cook with)
- Golden syrup
***Borax is widely available in the USA and can be used to make crystals, but it comes with significant health warnings in Europe about its potential harm to babies so I can't recommend it on this list.
- Magnets - in toys, horseshoe & bar - different strengths
- Balance arm scales
- Plastic jug
- Plastic funnels in different sizes
- Jam jars - some with tops
- Plastic containers cut out of bottles
- A plastic tray
- Scientist coat made of old white shirt
- Different shaped plastic bottles with same capacity
- Large empty plastic bottles, e.g. squash / oil, with tops on
- Seives / colanders
- Hand whisks
- Small magnetic items e.g. paper clips, spoons
- Non magnetic metal items e.g. non magnetic coins
- Pipe cleaners
- Light bulb
- Plastic bricks e.g. duplo / mega bloks for measuring
- Empty aluminium can
- Sparkles / glitter
- Packing peanuts
- Paper towels
- Paper plates
- Plastic or paper cups
This post is linked up at these fab parties: No Time for Flash Cards, Sunday Showcase, Science Sundays, Made by Little Hands Monday, Tuesday Tots, Show and Tell, Eco Kids Tuesday, Mommy Club, Trendy Tree House, Our Seasons of Joy, It's Playtime, Shine on Fridays, For the Kids Friday, Weekly Kids Co-op, Magic Onions, Sharing Saturday, I Can Teach My Child, True Aim Education, Read Explore Learn, Pre-School Corner, Thank Goodness It's Friday, Learn and Link, Share It Saturday