I love that any time I call out to the boys that it’s science time, they both come running to the kitchen, ready to go!
It’s funny to me that often times, my 2 and 1/2 year old will get to the table and ask for baking soda and vinegar. I love that he knows what those household items are, and that he associates the combination with science.
So that’s exactly what we did — we used the old baking soda and vinegar combination to see how it would react with the candy hearts we had.
This experiment reminded us of a similar one we did not too long ago, “dancing raisins.” I asked the boys to predict what might happen to the candy hearts, and they thought that the hearts would dance up and down like the raisins did.
And of course, any time we add anything to water, we pose the question of whether it will sink or float. They predicted that the candy hearts would sink, and they did sink! They are always excited when their predictions come out as they expected.
Here’s how we continued with our experiment.
Baking soda, water, vinegar, candy hearts (we used the Sweethearts brand), small spoon for mixing.
1. Pour one cup of water into a bowl. 2. Add one tablespoon of baking soda, and mix well until the baking soda is dissolved. 3. Add a few candy hearts into the bowl.
NOTE: I let my little one add the baking soda, and he put about a good tablespoon in there but 1-2 teaspoons should be plenty! Also, our bowl was fairly small and the liquid fizzed out of it, so make sure you use a bowl that’s not too shallow.
As we prepared to drop the candy hearts into the bowl, this is him asking if he could have a candy heart to eat! Okay, I’ll be honest — I let him have a few!
4. Pour in about 1/4 cup of vinegar.
So what did we observe? The boys of course, always get excited when the liquid fizzes up with bubbles! Then we noticed that little by little, the candy hearts would float up to the top! Eventually, they all floated to the top. We talked about how these candy hearts didn’t “dance” like the raisins did in our other experiment. The candy hearts would float to the top and stay there, unlike the raisins that would float and then sink back down. The boys also observed that the water started to change colors matching some of the candy hearts, in particular the blue ones.
Also, you can always experiment with the amount of vinegar and baking soda and see what happens. I always let the boys add more baking soda and vinegar and watch their reactions. For some reason, this never gets old to them!
I love how simple science experiments can invite so many questions and keep the conversation going for a long time!
My eldest son was there for this experiment but decided he was camera shy :).