Yes! Science! Warm summer weather is perfect for messy, outdoor experiments like the three listed below and sneaking some science into your summer is a great way to put a stopper in the dreaded summer brain drain. So, gather your supplies (you may need to shop for a few of these), step outside, and have some fun with science this summer!

Rainbow Bubble Snakes

Materials:

  • Empty plastic water bottle
  • Sacrificial sock
  • Dish soap
  • Food coloring

Add some color to your summer with this surprisingly simple science activity! Start by trimming the bottom off the water bottle and placing a thin sock over the opening. Now mix a squirt of the dish soap with some water and mix in a plate or bowl. Add a few drops of different colored food coloring to the end of the sock, dip the sock into the mixture, and blow through the open end of the water bottle for a snake of multi-colored bubbles.

Really Big Bubbles

Materials:

  • 6 Cups water
  • ½ Cup dish detergent
  • ½ Cup corn starch
  • 1 Tbsp Baking powder
  • 1 Tbs Glycerin

Yes, glycerin. You can find it online (it’s inexpensive) and it’s so worth the purchase because these bubbles are gigantic. Enormous. Seriously, the biggest bubbles ever. And they’re so easy. Just dissolve the corn starch in the water (it may not dissolve completely and that’s okay), then add the rest of the ingredients slowly, and let the mixture sit for an hour or longer. Just when you feel like you’re going to blow (get it?), take your mixture outside and give it another stir (corn starch sticks to the bottom, oobleck-style) Blow a few test bubbles, stirring the mixture every now and then. The first few will be duds, but the more you dip and blow, the bigger and better they’ll get, until, eventually, they’re almost too big to blow off of your wand (you might a really big wand to go with your really big bubbles – you can usually find an assortment at the Dollar Store). Still and cloudy days are the best bubble weather, but is there ever really a bad time for bubbles?

 

Pop Goes the Lunch Bag

Materials:

  • Zip sandwich bag
  • ½ Cup vinegar
  • 3 Tsps baking soda
  • ¼ Cup warm water
  • Facial tissue

Surprise, surprise – your kids will love this exploding science experiment. First, place 3 teaspoons of baking soda in the center of the tissue and fold it up. Next, pour ¼ cup of warm water and a ½ cup of vinegar into your sandwich bag and seal the bag, leaving just a corner open. Slip your entire tissue through the open corner, then seal completely. Watch as the bag begins to expand and then… BANG! Note – it make take several minutes to explode.

The best part about messy summer science is hosing the kids off outside! And, hey, we can’t help it if your backyard science lab mysteriously transforms into a slip n slide course or sprinkler party. After all, that’s what summer is for, right?