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Food Science for Kids- Experimental Kitchen Fun

November 26, 2014

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When it comes to cooking, it always involves chemistry, biology and even math. The kitchen is a mecca of education that will fascinate your children given the right instruction. Fun experiments create lasting memories and provide added fun for lazy or rainy days.

Corncob fireworks                                          

The way popcorn is created from a simple kernel is fascinating. We have already packaged microwave popcorn, but this analysis explains exactly how the popcorn transforms from a kernel. Place a corn cob into a paper bag and microwave until the fireworks begin. As the kernels begin to pop, talk to your children about the chemical reaction that happens in popcorn that causes it to transform. Each kernel contains just the precise amount of water that comes to a boiling point in the microwave. This causes the kernel to explode resulting in perfect popcorn every time. Once the popping slows to just a few pops over several second, stop the microwave and remove the bag to display your creation.

Eating the earth

What could be more fun than teaching your children about the layers of the earth then making it edible? While a variety of ingredients can be used for this edible experiment, puffed rice treats make for the perfect core. If you are feeling particularly brave you can make a full earth, otherwise just a slice will do. Begin with the molten core by adding red food coloring to your puffed rice treats. Next, form a layer of the outer core using orange food coloring to show the variance of heat. The traditional color of puffed rice treats is excellent for producing earth’s mantle. The earth’s crust can be correctly portrayed by using chocolate puffed rice or by adding a layer of chocolate icing. Complete your experiment with frosting that depicts the earth’s oceans and countries. Now the fun begins! Slice into your edible earth and experience all the layers of the earth. Talk to your children about how each part and layer is essential to the way earth was formed.

Plastic bag ice cream

Does your child know that they can make their own ice cream with a few ingredients found in most homes? This experiment is not only delicious but gets the kids moving and shaking while teaching them about chemical reactions. Gather two plastic zip bags for each child. 1 bag should be gallon size, the other quart. To the quart size bag add 1 cup of half and half, 2 tbsp. of sugar, and ½ teaspoon of vanilla extract. To the gallon size bag add enough ice to fill the bag up halfway and ½ a cup of rock salt. Place the ingredient bag inside the ice bag and seal. Then allow your kids to let loose and shake the bags until the mixture hardens. As you spoon out the ice cream explain how the chemical reaction of the ice and salt helped to form an edible treat. They will surely be amazed.