Thursday, August 8, 2013

Summer Camp Chemical Reactions

Fun With Baking Soda & Vinegar

            What’s better than making a mess? Making a mess while doing scientific investigations of course. This week at Summer Camp, we are conducting experiments with items you already have on hand at home. Any teacher will tell you that the best learning happens when the child is completely engaged in the activity and trust me you and your children will squeal with delight with these easy to do experiments!  This week we’re going to be doing a favorite activity of my classroom –Chemical Reactions Using Baking Soda, Vinegar and Soap Bubbles!


     baking soda
dishwashing soap
food coloring                  

The Setup- We placed our containers in a large baking dish to contain the mess and potential overflow.  Like many of out Summer Camp Activities, these are even more fun when done outside and it’s so much easier on the clean up afterwards.  

 Into each container add:

½ cup of water
½ tablespoon of baking soda
A few drops of food coloring

In one container add 1 tablespoon of dishwashing soap

 Stir each container using different spoons for each.  You should begin to notice that a few bubbles are formed in the container with the soap. Be sure to ask your children what differences they are noticing as well.

Next, add a tablespoon of vinegar to the containers. You should immediately see differences in the way both solutions react as the reaction of your children as they observe the changes. Truthfully, watching your children’s faces is the best part of the whole thing!

Want to extend the experiments? Try following the same procedures but this time compare such household items as Baking Soda, Flour and even Salt. 

Before adding the vinegar to the new items, ask your children to make a prediction how each will react when the vinegar is combined with the ingredients.  In doing so, you’re building the foundation of a budding scientist because after all, science is all about forming a hypothesis, the experiment and then coming to a conclusion and determining if your original hypothesis was right or wrong. The best part of science is that it’s impossible to make a mistake. Some of the best lessons occur when things don’t quite go as planned!

Want to take this one step further and really create excitement? Using the Play Dough from last week’s Summer Camp, make a volcano with an empty container for the center. Pour the baking soda into the empty container and then slowly add some vinegar in which a few drops of red food coloring has been added for the lava  effect. Stand back and get ready for the eruption of lava and giggles!

If you missed out on any of the previous Summer Camp series, or want to do one over again, click on the links below.

Summer Camp Play Dough

Gayle is a Disney Gal that loves churros for breakfast, still gets giddy with delight at the first sight of the “Disneyland next exit sign”, loves the overwhelming emotions and memories that come with each and every return to the Happiest Place on Earth and dreams of one day being the Captain of the Jungle Boat. To learn more about Gayle, click here


  1. Thanks so much V! Those are 2 of my 4 grandkids-Lyssie and Hailey!

  2. Love your experiments Gayle! What a fun grandma!! I'm not so sure that my mom would be this adventurous. Must pay to have a Kinder teacher in the family :)