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6 experts and 2 parents have answered

Holly Seddon admin
Holly Seddon Editor-in-chief of Kent, UK

I love doing stuff like this with my kids! I think science lessons in schools ARE getting better (more interactive, more fun, more 'real world') but they can still be so focussed on teaching to a curriculum that they don't have the freedom to just 'do' science and just experiment as much as the kids (and probably the teachers!) would like.

So we 'play' with science at home. Two of my favourites are very simple.

Mixing cornflour and water to play with solids and liquids. The mixture pours like a liquid and sits like a solid. It's very odd to see.

The second is a bit more exciting: Mentos and Diet Coke. It's probably easier to watch the video than describe it, but you essentially add Mentos to Diet Coke and watch it erupt (video here) and then actual scientific explanation here. It is awesome.

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Experience 4 years ago
expert answer
Roberto Catanuto expert
Roberto Catanuto Teacher, Club Instructor CH
Education expert

Some time ago I bought a marvelous book from the Exploratorium Museum in San Francisco, CA. The title is "Exploratopia" and it is full-packed with hundreds of science rich and highly educational experiments.

Most of them can be replicated at home, with little effort by a child or teenager and an adult.

I suggest to use a light scientifically structured approach to the experiment:

  1. let the child make a prediction about what the outcomes will be
  2. prepare and run the experiment
  3. compare the predictions with the results

(eventually) 4. repeat the experiment as long as the discrepancies are little enough

I strongly recommend this book. It is a well-grounded introduction to the pleasure of science.

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Experience 4 years ago
expert answer
Richard Taylor expert
Richard Taylor Father of 4 boys & IT Consultant Bushmills, GB
Technology expert

wine glasses filled with differing amounts of water and making different notes when you rub your fingers round the top....

home-made waterwheel that is powered by the rain from the gutters.....

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Opinion 4 years ago
expert answer
Lorraine Allman expert
Lorraine Allman Author, Businesswoman, Mum GB
Careers expert

Children are naturally curious, so exploring events and possibilities with them can help their learning and ability to think creatively as well as give you as a parent an insight into how the world is viewed through their eyes!

Using basic kitchen ingredients just as Holly has suggested is quick and easy and most experiments kids can carry out themselves using items such as flour, eggs, vinegar, food colouring, salt, and water. Making salt dough, floating an egg, or creating volcano lava are my six year old's favourite ones!

If the experiment doesn't work or works differently to what's expected, talk with your child about what could be changed e.g. perhaps more salt in the dough, and encourage them to try again. There are some great online resources for easy science experiments at home too such as or

Older kids might enjoy the Science Museum's Kitchen Science booklet and if you have access to ABC TV channel there is an excellent science program called 'Backyard Science' they will love too.

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Experience 4 years ago
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Experience 4 years ago
expert answer
Terry Doherty expert
Terry Doherty Parent literacy expert US

I'll second Roberto's recommendation for Exploratopia:

My personalfavorite is Naked Eggs and Flying Potatoes by Steve Spangler. These are find-it-in-your-kitchen experiments.

We have a couple of other books we reviewed for the Reading Tub:

Crafty Inventions by Gerry Bailey:

Crime Scene Science: Detective Notebook by Andrea Campbell:

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Experience 4 years ago
expert answer
David Sheppard expert
David Sheppard school teacher GB
Education expert

My son has enjoyed some of the experiments in 'Crisp packet fireworks: maverick science to try at home'

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Experience 4 years ago

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