One of the first things I’m asked at the beginning of the year is, “When do we get to do experiments?”. In this post, I’ll show you four easy back to school science experiments that kids can do at home whether they are learning in the classroom or remotely. Children are curious by nature and always full of questions. This post will give you ways to channel those questions into scientific investigations.
Fun back to school science experiments
All of the materials for these back to school science activities are easy to get at any local grocery store. Before you start any labs with your students, always teach science safety first. Safety is one of the four things I always teach first in science, at the beginning of every year.
Explore buoyancy with milk & cookies
Most kids love milk and cookies, so why not use them to teach science? Teaching students about the processes scientists use is key to building a foundation for all of your future science lessons. In this lab, students learn the steps to carrying out an investigation and the steps to the scientific method.
While most students are familiar with the concept of sink or float, they might not know the term buoyancy. Explore the buoyancy of cookies in milk with The Great Cookie Dunk experiment.
Explore solubility with Sharpies
Using simple materials found at the dollar store, Marker Madness is another fun experiments to teach students about asking questions and forming a hypothesis.
In this lab students explore solubility by testing the permanence of a marker drawn on a coffee filter.
With my second graders, I begin the year by posing the questions. As we progress, students form questions on their own.
Click here to see how we investigated whether or not permanent markers are really and truly permanent in Marker Madness!
Get scientific with snacks
This properties of matter cracker lab is always a huge hit! Students learn what properties and attributes are and ways they can describe them.
When teaching students about the properties of matter, students learn that properties can be observed, measured and tested. Students use hand lenses to look closely at the observable properties of their crackers and use adjectives to describe them. All of the crackers we use are available at the dollar store, along with inexpensive hand lenses.
Click here to see how to do the cracker lab.
Make ice cream in a bag
This changing matter experiment is a fun way students can investigate reversible and irreversible changes. They learn that ice cream is a combination of a solid, a liquid, and a gas all at once. Making ice cream in a bag is a good way to observe how matter is changed by heating or cooling.
As students make their ice cream they gain experience in carrying out an investigation, making observations, and collecting and analyzing data.
All of these labs are easy to do at home with simple materials found at any grocery store. These introduce the processes scientist use and lay the groundwork for future investigations.
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