Sunday, March 25, 2012

Red cabbage Juice- Part 2

After our first day of experimenting with red cabbage juice and various substances the preschoolers wanted to choose new substances to mix with the cabbage juice. They were curious about what substances were acidic and which ones were basic. They made guesses as to what color the red cabbage juice would change to when various substances were mixed with it. 

Half of the preschoolers were outside, while the other half chose substances by looking in the bathroom and the kitchen.

These are the substances that we decided upon:
Mouth Wash
Dish Soap
Laundry Detergent
Toy and all around Disinfectant

As soon as all of the preschoolers gathered around the canvas on the ground, we had the preschoolers that had been outside guess what substances we chose. A few of the substances were passed around the circle so that each preschooler could get a closer look and smell them.

They quickly guessed the toothpaste and they also guessed the shampoo.

We were then ready to begin the experiment!

There were many guesses about what colors would appear in each jar when the cabbage juice was added to them.

What we ended up noticing is that most of the substances were fairly neutral. The disinfectant had the most extreme color change when mixed with the cabbage juice. It turned red, so we concluded that it is an "acid!" Most of the other ingredients were slightly basic.

Once we were finished adding red cabbage juice to each substance, the preschoolers wanted to do some more experimenting with mixing the various substances together. I added the substances, one at a time to the yogurt and cabbage juice mixture. We noticed that the mixture turned a lilac color, but unlike the day before, there were no bubbles, no fizz, no explosion of chemicals reacting together.
The preschoolers immediately remembered what substances caused the reaction the day before. A couple of them quickly exclaimed, "Add baking soda!"
 "Add lemon juice!"
 "Add vinegar!"
So, I went to get those three substances, and I added each substance, alternating between an acid and a base. This time, just like the day before, bubbles formed quickly, rising higher with each addition of vinegar, baking soda, and lemon juice.

We noticed the fizz that rose up out of the liquid was a light pink color, until more baking soda was added. The bubbles settled a bit back into the jar, changing to a light blue, which stemmed from the darker blue liquid at the bottom of the jar.

 Exploring through experimentation provides a new way for the preschoolers to learn about science and about various substances. Through experimenting with red cabbage juice and common household substances, we learned about pH, explored colors and color mixing, and discovered exciting chemical reactions. The preschoolers asked questions and proposed hypotheses, we tested those hypotheses, and made new hypotheses about different substances based on what we learned during the first experiment. We conducted a scientific experiment!

A few days later, we observed part of our experiment in action while doing something we love... baking!

While making homemade raisin bread, we noticed something happen when we added lemon juice to the rest of the already mixed ingredients... fizzy bubbles!

We remembered back to our experiment, talking about what was happening to the batter when the lemon juice was added. A couple of the preschoolers remembered that we added baking soda to the batter. They observed that the same chemical reaction we saw in our experiment was currently happening with our bread batter.


Science is in everything we do!!

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