Thursday, December 31, 2009

Pop Bottle Science

My main reason for starting this thing is to have a memory album for my boys.  But it sure is gonna be nice to be able to play in all the contests, giveaways, and weekly whatevers I see around, like this science fair at Ordinary Life Magic.  She's giving away science books by Janice VanCleave, and I'd say go and join in, but A) the contest is over today and B) the only person reading this right now is me.

Anyhow, we finally had a 2 Liter bottle in the house (thank you Aunt Jane), so we could do two short little experiments I've had my eye on for a while, plus a bonus to qualify for the giveaway. 

First up was Clicking Quarter.  We put the empty bottle in the freezer for an hour or so, moistened the quarter, and then brought out the bottle and put the quarter on top. 

As the air in the bottle warmed, it moved the quarter, with some very satisfying click click clicks.  The boys were fascinated, and Noah might have even understood the science behind it.

Next up was Matter Takes Up Space from Janice VanCleave's website.  We put a balloon over the mouth of the bottle and attempted to blow up the balloon.

That was as much as any of us could do.  The air inside the bottle kept the balloon from expanding any more than that.  I think this one went over Noah's head, though they both thought it was neat.

Last up was Oil + Water = Lava Lamp.  We poured vegetable oil and water tinted with food coloring into the bottle and noticed how they stayed separate.

I thought the blue dye would make the separation more obvious, but it just confused them.  It mixed with the vegetable oil enough to turn it green, and Noah just focused on that.


  1. We've done both of those experiments, too!
    :) The quarter one was cool. With the air one - you can do the same thing, but put a small(ish) hole in the bottom of the two liter, then with the hole not plugged with your finger, blow up the balloon again. When It blows up as large as you can get it, put your finger back over the hole, and the balloon will stay inflated. After that -in the summertime, :) - take it to the sink, and fill the balloon with water, keeping your finger over the hole (keeping the vacuum seal) - take it outside, and take your finger off the hole. The water goes shooting up! Way fun. My children loved it! :)

    Welcome to blogging - I find so much joy and satisfaction in our daily stories - I hope you like it, too!

  2. Oooo, that extention on the balloon one sounds super fun. It's warm here--we may have to do that tomorrow!