Making Crystals – It’s Real Chemistry



The United Nations declared 2011 the International Year of CHEMISTRY, and in honor of that, here is a cool chemistry experiment that will amaze your friends—cool crystals that grow overnight!  This experiment involves boiling water, so you will need an adult assistant (adult assistants are great whenever there is dirty work to do).
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Disappearing monster eyes

This activity is a neat experiment, a cool decoration, and a fun party trick.  “Disappearing Monster Eyes” takes the old “peeled grapes as eyeballs” trick up a notch.  “Clear spheres” (Monster Eyes) are similar to the substance found in disposable baby diapers.  Both belong to the family known as Superabsorbent polymers.  Superabsorbent polymers do just what you would think they would do—absorb lots and lots and LOTS of water.
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Halloween Party Science—more fun with dry ice

Last week we used dry ice to create a “smoke-breathing jack-o-lantern.”  This week we will be using dry ice for more Halloween science fun perfect for parties.
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If anyone asks, today our experiment is “an exploration of sublimation using a gourd of theCucurbita genus.”  In other words, we are going to make a smoke-breathing jack-o-lantern using dry ice!

You can usually get dry ice from most major grocery chains.  Just ask for it at customer service.

Before you start–science safety smarts:  This experiment is really cool and lots of fun, but requires an adult assistant.  Before your experiment, keep the dry ice in a cooler with the lid slightly open.  Don’t store it in a tightly closed container, or the rapidly expanding carbon dioxide could burst the container.  It’s also important to remember that you should never touch dry ice with your bare hands—always handle it with tongs or special gloves.  Dry ice is so cold that it can freeze your skin on contact, and it feels like a very bad burn.  Your best bet is to recruit an adult assistant to do the dirty work.

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You’ve probably heard of people being left or right handed.  Did you know that most people are also either left or right “eyed?”  Being left or right-eyed doesn’t affect which hand has better handwriting or how you hold a baseball bat, though.
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The Green Monster
It’s not Halloween yet but summer is a great time to make ooey, gooey substances.  Here’s a way to  create a cup of fizzing, bubbling green goo?
In this experiment, you’ll use things found in your own kitchen to create a creature of primordial ooze that tries to escape its cup.  Along the way, you’ll learn about acids and bases, two very important components of any mad scientist’s laboratory!

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