02 July 2012

Turning daily project failures into successes!

Before we left for New York, I couldn't come up with anything quick with easy clean-up so I had them turn their watercolor coffee filters into a garland.  It was cheap and they knew it.  But now they're pretty pleased with the color it adds to the family room fireplace.

For today's project, I dipped into my stash of film canisters, having the boys fill the bottom with vinegar and stuff the lids full of baking soda to yield a salt, water, and CO2 (I'm really jazzed to be able to do a subscript, by the way).

You're supposed to tightly replace the lid and turn the canister upside-down to demonstrate Newton's Third Law of Motion (i.e., the carbon dioxide pushes the lid downward and the canister is pushed upward) with cool rocket-like propulsion.  FAIL!  I couldn't cap them well enough and the water and gas merely leaked out...

But I still wanted to talk about the chemical reaction so we filled a balloon with baking soda and inverted it into a soda bottle full of vinegar.

The boys pronounce it a success!

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