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Bubbling Cauldron

10/16/18

Bubbling Cauldron

By Anna Goolsby, Marketing Assistant

Double, double toil and trouble… it’s time to make a cauldron bubble! Explore chemistry with your little witch or wizard as you create your own spooky science experiment.

Materials

  • Cauldron (or bowl)
  • Baking Tray
  • Baking Soda
  • White Vinegar
  • Dish Soap
  • Food Coloring (of your choice)
  • Glitter (optional)
  • Plastic Eyeballs (or any other creepy “ingredients”)

Activity

Place your cauldron on your baking tray, making sure the tray has a little bit of a lip to catch any wayward witch’s brew. Fill your cauldron about a third of the way with your white vinegar. Add a few drops of your food coloring then mix in a healthy squirt of dish soap. Now, it’s time to get creative! Add glitter and other creepy “ingredients” to your brew to make it extra spooky. When you feel like it’s just the way you want it, pour in a heaping tablespoon of your baking soda and watch your cauldron bubble before your eyes!

The Science

This experiment explores two very important chemical reactions – an acid-base reaction and a decomposition reaction. The acid-base reaction happens when your white vinegar (acid) is combined with your baking soda (base). When baking soda (sodium bicarbonite) and the acetic acid in your vinegar are first combined, they create carbonic acid and sodium acetate. This is when the second reaction happens! The carbonic acid creates a decomposition reaction as it begins to break down into water and carbon dioxide gas – creating your boiling, bubbling brew!
Learn more»

Further Exploration

  • What happens when you use more vinegar? More baking soda? Which mixture works best and why do you think that is?
  • Join us for more spooky science fun at our Family Fun Labs on Oct. 27! ????
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