When choosing the best simple science experiments for your young, you should look for experiments that have a specific outline, and do not require complicated ingredients. You will have to wait for weeks to receive it. There are many different types of experiments to choose from as well. Consider these experiments when you need a simple solution.
Chemical Reactions – The Oil and Water Test
If you have ever noticed that oil floats on the top of puddles after a rainstorm and wondered why this happens, here is a great experiment to figure it out. Start with a jar of water that has been dyed any bright color. Pour in a 1/4 cup of oil; vegetable or corn is fine. Shake the oil and water in the jar for at least 30 seconds. You can also dye the oil with the opposite color for an even better effect.
Observe what happens. The oil and water will separate and form two completely different layers with the oil floating on the top. This experiment proves the rule of immiscibility, which states that certain things cannot be mixed no matter what. While there is a much deeper explanation for why this happens, a young child will be happy to know this simple explanation.
Cohesion – Exploring the Principles of Density
In this experiment, your child will begin to understand what density means and what types of items are denser than others. You only need a few household items to complete this experiment.
- A glass jar or clear plastic container
- Cooking Oil
- A small piece of plastic
- A small cork
- A grape
Directions: Pour equal parts of the water, oil, and syrup into the jar or container. The amount does not matter so long as they are equal amounts. Allow the liquids to sit for a few minutes so that each liquid forms its own layer. The syrup, as it is the densest, should settle to the bottom, with the water next and the oil settling to the top, since it is least dense.
Next, drop the items in the container and wait for each to sink. Each item will sink to the level that has a higher density than the object. The item will pass through each layer that has a lesser density and end up floating on the one that is higher.
Light – Refraction Principles
Refraction is what happens when light passes through a clear piece object or substance such as glass or water. This reaction can cause objects to appear different than they really are. For example, when an object is underwater, it can appear to be located in a different spot or to be a different shape.
For this experiment, you will need a few items:
- A glass of water
- A pencil
You will need to fill the glass approximately 2/3 of the way full. First, hold the pencil straight up and down, making sure not to hold it at an angle. When you look through the side of the glass, the pencil will appear to remain straight. Next, let go of the pencil and let it lean on the edge of the glass. When looking through the side for the second time, the pencil will appear to be bent.
This is what happens when the light refracts through the water. The reason the light doesn’t refract when looking through a window and make everything distorted is that there are two sides to the glass the inner and outer. The light must pass through both sides, and therefore it is bent the first time one way and the second time the opposite way. This cancels out the effects of refraction.
There are, of course, hundreds of science experiments for homeschooled children to perform, with much more in-depth explanations for the results. These specific experiments are geared for younger children who just like to see the results without needing to understand extensive explanations. They make an excellent way for your child to become interested in science at an earlier age.