7 Great and Fun Home Chemistry Experiments for Kids

If you want to introduce your children to some basic chemistry principles, and have fun at the same time, why not try these great experiments for kids.

If you are looking for some fun, and interesting, activities to do with your kids then why not consider some of these great, and easy, home chemistry experiments. This list is far from exhaustive and is in no particular order.

Trust us when we say there are literally thousands of others out there on the net if the following don't tickle your fancy. 

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What is chemistry for kids?

Chemistry is the branch of science that studies the properties of matter and how it interacts with energy. 

"Chemistry is considered a physical science and is closely related to physics. ... Scientists who specialize in chemistry are called chemists." - ducksters.com

What is a mixture in chemistry for kids?

In chemistry, a mixture is defined as "a substance in which two or more substances are mixed but not chemically joined together, meaning that a chemical reaction has not taken place." - science-sparks.com

For this reason, mixtures can usually be separated into their original constituent parts without changing their original properties.

What are chemical properties for kids?

All chemicals have their own particular properties that dictate how they look and interact with other chemicals. 

chemistry for kids experiments
Source: Maxpixel

"The chemical properties of matter are those characteristics that give it the ability (or inability) to undergo a chemical change—a change in composition. The chemical properties of a substance predict whether a chemical reaction will or will not take place." - kids.britannica.com

Examples of fun chemistry experiments for kids

Here are some great experiments you can conduct in the safety of your own home. Introduce your kids to some basic chemistry principles in a fun and educational way. 

1. The timeless bottle rocket experiment

When it comes to teaching kids some basic chemistry you can't beat the 'good old' bottle rocket experiment. This will not only teach them about some basic chemical reactions but will also introduce some elements of engineering too. 

For this experiment you will need: -

  • An empty, clean soda pop bottle
  • Some paper towel
  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar
  • Some kind of stopper (a cork for example)
  • A launchpad of some kind

With those materials gathered, the rest is as easy-as-pie. Put about 3/4 to 1 cup of vinegar in the bottle. Place about 1 tablespoon of baking soda in a small piece of paper towel that's small enough to fold up and slip into the bottle with ease.

When you are ready to launch, insert the soda-paper package, put in the stopper and turn the whole rig upside down in the launcher. 

Then just step back and wait for the fireworks! Obviously, make sure you do this in a wide-open space, they can go pretty far at times.

2. Baking Soda Dinosaur Eggs!

Who doesn't love an experiment that involves some chemistry with a dinosaur theme? You're children certainly will.

With this simple chemistry experiment, you, and your kids will get the opportunity to make and hatch some baking soda dino eggs. 

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For this one you'll need: -

  • Baking soda (obviously) 
  • Water
  • Food coloring
  • Syringes
  • White vinegar
  • Casserole dish or some other container
  • Dish soap
  • Dinosaur toys
  • Parchment paper

You might also want: -

  • Rubber gloves
  • Safety glasses

First off, add the coloring to the baking soda - - you might want to put your gloves on for this. Once complete, add some water (about 1/4 cup for every box of baking soda).

Slowly mix it until it becomes a paste. Then take a handful, place a little toy dinosaur in the middle and mold a roughly egg-shaped ball. Keep adding paste until the dinosaur is encased and you are happy with the shape. 

Place your eggs on the parchment paper and put them in the freezer for about an hour or overnight. 

To hatch, put them in a bowl (line with soap for ease of cleaning later), fill the syringes with vinegar and squirt away!

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3. The "Cloud in a Jar" experiment

chemistry for kids clouds
Source: giftofcuriosity.com

How about teaching them about condensation and how clouds form with this great little experiment?

For this you'll need: -

  • A jar with a lid
  • 1/3 cup of hot water
  • Ice
  • Hairspray

To do this experiment, pour the hot water into the jar. Swirl it around a bit to heat up the jar.

Turn the lid upside down and sit it on the top of the jar.

Place some ice cubes on the lid and allow to rest for about 20 seconds. Next, remove the lid and spray some hairspray into the jar and put the lid (with ice) back on the top of the jar. 

You should start to see a cloud appear. Once a decent amount has formed, remove the lid and watch the cloud escape the jar!

4. Grow some crystals with your kids!

Here is another great, and fun, experiment.

For this one you'll need: -

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  • Water
  • Food Colouring (optional)
  • Borax
  • Pipe cleaners
  • Fishing line, thread or thin string
  • Long wood skewer
  • Stovetop
  • Large pot with a lid
  • Tinfoil
  • Tea Towels
  • Safety equipment

The first thing to do is make some shapes with the pipe cleaners. Once complete attach them to the skewers using the fishing line and dangle into the pot (but don't touch the bottom).

Fill the pot with water but leave about 2.5 cm (1-inch) at the top. Add coloring if you want to do so, remove skewers and shapes, bring to boil and then let it simmer. 

Next start adding the borax until no more dissolves. Submerge your shapes again and turn off your hob.

Lastly, cover the setup to prevent heat from escaping as much as possible, and let it cool for about 24 hours. You should now have some awesome borax crystals for your labors.

5. Oil and water experiment

chemisty for kids oil and water
Source: Dave Lundy/Flickr

Here is another classic kid chemistry experiment. 

You will need: -

  • Small soft drink bottle
  • Water
  • Food coloring
  • 2 tablespoons of cooking oil
  • Dishwashing liquid or detergent

The method is easy. add some food coloring to the water. Pour about 2 tablespoons of the colored water with about the same volume of cooking oil into the bottle. 

Screw the lid on tight and shake the bottle hard. Put the bottle down and watch as the oil-water mixture separates over time. 

6. "Water molecules on the move"

chemistry experiments for kids food coloring
Source: Maxpixel

Here is yet another great little chemistry experiment you can perform with your little angels (or demons).

For this one you will need: -

  • A clear glass filled with hot water
  • A clear glass filled with cold water
  • Food coloring
  • An eyedropper

To complete this one, first, fill the glasses with the same amount of water. Make sure one is cold and the other hot.

Then place one drop of food coloring into both glasses as quickly as you can - try to synchronize if at all possible. 

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Then watch and see what happens with the food coloring in the cold and hot water. You will be pleasantly surprised.

7. How about making some fake snot?

And lastly, make some fake snot with your kids

For this, you'll need: -

  • Boiling water (be careful with this, obviously)
  • A cup
  • Gelatin
  • Corn syrup
  • A teaspoon
  • A fork

To do this, fill the cup with boiling water, then add three teaspoons of gelatin to it. 

Next, let it soften and then stir with the fork. Add a 1/4 cup of corn syrup and stir the mixture until long strands or gunk start to form. 

Let the mixture cool slowly and add extra water as needed in small amounts until you get the texture you want. 

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