No matter what you do to child-proof your home, toddlers are capable of just about anything. From finding and eating small objects to falling into sharp items to breaking your finest glass figure, mistakes easily happen. But these parents were not expecting what their precious son was going to do.
Ben and Jackee Belnap’s 2-year-old son Leo found an envelope filled with cash that was laying on the kitchen counter of their home in Holladay, Utah. The Belnaps had been saving up to pay Ben’s parents back for University of Utah football season tickets. They had finally scraped together $1,060 and placed the cash in the envelope, ready to be delivered.
Apparently, Leo had a fondness for the paper shredder and occasionally would help his parents destroy junk mail or other documents, so when he saw the envelope, he thought it necessary to help his parents out and shred the envelope containing a great stash of money.
Although Ben and Jackee were initially devastated regarding the loss of their large savings, they finally were able to laugh about the situation. “For like five minutes, we just shuffled through it, not talking. We didn’t know what to do and then I broke the silence and I’m like, ‘Well, this will make a great wedding story one day,’” Jackee said.
However, Leo’s parents were in luck. The US Department of the Treasury can reimburse people for mutilated currency as a free public service, provided that the pieces of the bills can be returned. Ben made a quick phone call to the bureau and put all the remnants of the money into a plastic baggie and mailed it to the department.
Ben also took to Twitter to post about the humorous incident, Some social media users saw this and tried to start a GoFundMe to reimburse them for their savings, but the Belnaps politely declined the offer. Instead, they asked their followers to donate to the Refugee Aid charity.
40 Cool Science Experiments to Do With Kids at Home
Cook in a S’more Solar Oven
This one can be a smart science project that will definitely win some prizes. The ingredient we need the most is the sunlight. Making use of an abandoned pizza box, you have to cut a flip in the lid and cover it with aluminum foil.
After gluing back the construction paper and making it air-tight, you will end up with a fantastic small solar oven! Now you can melt marshmallows and chocolate and make yourselves delicious s’mores using this solar oven!
Make an Edible Water Bottle
What if one can drink both the water and the bottle? Sounds crazy? Well, it is possible! This is a great experiment to create awareness about plastic waste among kids. For this, you will need sodium alginate derived from seaweed, food grade calcium lactate, and drinking water.
After blending them together in desired quantity, it needs to be set aside. After some steps of scooping out and removing bottles, you will end up with an edible and transparent blob! It looks almost like a water droplet and can be eaten too!
This is a fun experiment to conduct, and your children would love it. You will need a few skittles or M&Ms for this experiment. What you will be doing is dispersing the skittles/M&Ms in different types of liquid and see which one dissolves first.
This is going to be a lesson in stratification and dispersion. As you will be using candies, your children will be more interested in this experiment and have a great time!
Life Cycle of a Plant
This is a fun lesson in botany for your kids. For this experiment, you will be using pumpkin seeds to show your children how plants grow from seeds. You can explain to your kids how plants sprout from seeds and even give them a seed germination demonstration.
This will pique their interest in learning about plants. So, if you want your kids to be interested in biology, try out this experiment!
Experimenting With Saliva
This is going to be a lesson in biology and chemistry. This experiment shows how saliva allows us to eat delicious foods and drinks. You have to let your kids know how important saliva really is.
Show them how our saliva is able to dissolve food particles with an easy taste testing experiment. Let them eat different types of food and ask them which food is dissolved first to show them how saliva works.
Water Drops on a Coin
Try this fun experiment with your children where you find out how many drops of water a penny can hold before it spills. This would be a lesson in the surface tension of water and its properties. All you will need in order to conduct this experiment is a penny, a water dropper, and a bit of water.
Start dropping little drops of water on the penny and see how the water occupies space in the coin and eventually spills outside the coin.
Water Bending With Electricity
Unfortunately your kids can’t become water benders like Katara from Avatar, but they can bend water using the power of science! Using static electricity, they can bend the flow of water. All you will need is a comb and a head full of hair.
Comb your kid’s hair around ten times and then hold that comb near a faucet with running water. Your kids will see how the water gets attracted to the comb, thus bending its flow.
Experiment With Pulleys
This is a very simple yet exciting experiment for which you will need a few equipment. You will need a pulley, a long rope, a bucket, and a few rocks. At first, you have to tell your kids to pick up a few rocks of different sizes and weights.
They will tell you how difficult it was to pick up each rock. Then attach those with the pulley and tell them to pull the pulley. Ask them now, whether it’s easier or harder to pick them up using the pulley.
You can make a bug vacuum at home using a mason jar, a milk/juice carton, two straws, tape, and a gauze pad. Scientists use this type of vacuum, which they call an aspirator or pooter, to collect bugs and insects for research.
You can make this vacuum at home using the tools we mentioned and let your children collect insects to learn about them. This can be a two-in-one lesson on physics and biology.
Baking Soda Volcano
This one has to be the most common and overdone experiment around the world, but it is still considered one of the best kid’s science activities. Using sodium bicarbonate, commonly known as baking soda, you can create a mini volcano at home.
You will have to build a volcano-like structure using metal or cement and then put baking soda inside the volcano. Pour liquid vinegar into the volcano and see it erupt like an actual volcano. This is a great lesson in chemistry and a very fun experiment!
This is one of the yummiest experiments on this list. Why? Because you get to eat cookies! To conduct this experiment, you will need to bake cookies. When they’re done baking, take them out of the oven and put them in an air-tight container with a piece of bread.
Keep them inside the container overnight and see how the cookies remain as great as freshly baked ones. This happens because the moisture in the bread gets absorbed by the sugar in the cookies, which allows them to stay fresh!
This can be a fun challenge that you can make your kids do. Take a few jars and put different items that have distinctive smells inside those jars. Keep those items there for a while and then empty the jar without washing them.
Make your kids smell the insides of the jar and guess what item was inside the jars. This can be a test for their olfactory senses and a fun activity to engage in.
Juice Tasting Game
This one is similar to the odor game. What you will need is three or four different juices, food coloring, tape, a pen, and paper. You will be making your kids guess the type of juice from the smell.
Make different types of juice and add food coloring so your kids can’t tell which is which just from the colors. Keep notes of which glass contains which juice and let your kids guess it from the smell. See how many they get right!
Give your children a stargazing experience. Take them to the terrace one night and show them the night sky full of stars. Teach them about shooting stars and tell them the secret behind shooting stars.
You can do some research and select a night on which a shooting star is said to appear. Maybe show them first-hand what a shooting star looks like using a telescope. Introduce them to the world of astronomy and space science.
Making tie dye clothing can be a fun science experiment as well as an arts and crafts activity. Get a t-shirt or a pair of socks, put a few different drops of dye on them, and twist them up. Leave them like that for a while and then spread them out.
You will see a beautiful pattern on the clothes with colorful dye. Through this, your kids will get a chemistry lesson as well as learn how to make their clothing look more artistic!
Give your children a lesson on how people used to tell the time before the invention of clocks and watches. Making a sundial at home is not tough at all! All you will need is an erect object that will represent the hands of a clock, a few small objects that will represent the times of the day.
Place the erect object in front of the smaller objects. Make sure the shadow falls on the objects in a way that you can tell the time.
Bubbles Using Dry Ice
While the concept of dry ice is cool itself (pun intended), you can take the coolness of this amazing substance to a whole new level! You can make bubbles using dry ice just by pouring some water onto it. When you pour water on dry ice, it changes the state of matter to gaseous which produces foggy bubbles.
This is a great lesson in states of matter and volatile substances. Your children will love seeing these bubbles and will also be surprised at how a solid can turn directly into gas in some cases.
Making Licorice Invisible
If you want to give your children a lesson on light’s refractive properties, this experiment is your go-to. When conducting the experiment, your children might be surprised at how half of the licorice disappears in oil.
After showing them the experiment, tell them what actually happens. Show them how light has a different refractive index in liquids and how it has the power to change the way objects look inside those liquids compared to that in air.
Putting an Egg Inside a Bottle
This one might be a little dangerous, so don’t let your kids try this experiment alone. You’ll be putting an egg inside a bottle using the power of air pressure. First, you’ll see that the egg does not enter the bottle.
Then once you light up a piece of paper, put it inside a bottle, and then try to put the egg inside it again, you will see that, due to the imbalanced air pressure, the egg will drop inside this time.
Making Invisible Ink
Did you know that you can create invisible ink at home using lemon juice? This experiment uses the concept of oxidation of electrons to produce invisible ink. In order to cause this oxidation, you will have to heat up lemon juice.
This will provide the lemon juice invisible ink like properties. You can play with your kids by sending secret invisible messages and making them write with this invisible ink as well.
This experiment is about the inter-molecular density and the polarity of atoms. You can create lava lamps at home using oil, water, and food coloring. Pour the oil and water in a bottle or jar.
You will see the ingredients won’t mix because of their molecular properties. Add some food coloring to the jar and try mixing them all. Add a fizzy tablet and see how the air bubbles go crazy! This experiment is visually pleasing and fun to conduct.
Make Some Delicious Candy
Making candy is easy with this fun experiment. You can make colorful looking candy crystals in different shapes. All you have to do is dissolve sugar in water while boiling the solution and stirring. Then pour it into a glass and keep it there for a week to cool down and harden properly.
After it is cooled and dried properly over a week, you will get beautiful looking sugar candy. If you add some food coloring, you will end up with some amazing candies!
Who doesn’t love candy hearts? They can be used in this cool experiment too. All you have to do is watch it dissolve them in different liquids. You can take some warm water and toss some candies in it. The result will be the candies dissolving in the water and creating a beautiful array of colors.
The experiment can be done using warm oil, milk and even cold water. The best thing about this experiment is that all you need is a spoon, so it is quite hassle-free.
Chemistry is no longer boring with this fizzy lemonade experiment. This easy and fun experiment involves mixing an acid with a base – the simplest reaction. All we need is a couple of lemons, cold water, sugar, and bicarbonate of soda, also known as baking soda.
After squeezing the lemon and mixing it with the cold water, the baking soda is added, which creates almost a volcanic bubble. Take a straw and sip on the lemonade, because it should taste good too!
Tornado in a Bottle
This is the easiest experiment ever. All you need is two empty two-liter bottles, duct tapes, metal washer, and water. The washer can be placed inside the empty bottle and lined up on top of the filled water bottle.
If the water bottle is turned upside down, you will see the water spin, mimicking tornadoes or hurricanes. When the spinning of the water quickens, you can see the hole in the middle of the whirlpool.
If your kid loves building things like LEGO, this challenge is for you two! All you need is toothpicks and candy. You will have to maintain a two to one ratio of toothpicks and candies such as a gumdrop. The rest is very simple!
Just connect the toothpicks to one another using the gumdrops. You can turn it into any shape you want with a triangular base or rectangular. Either way, your kid will end up with an amazing structure to show off!
Save some of the carved Halloween pumpkins to do this experiment. In fact, this can be a perfect prank too! For this, what you’ll have to do is take a hollow pumpkin and add some baking soda. You will also need some distilled white vinegar and some food coloring.
After adding these items to the baking soda, the pumpkin will bubble over. This is a great experiment and takes no extra ingredient, just regular pantry items.
The Science of Fall Colors
Did your kids show curiosity about how leaves change colors during the fall? Help them learn about it through this experiment! All you need is three small fall leaves, rubbing alcohol, a jar, plastic wrap, and coffee filter. After you break the leaves and pour some rubbing alcohol, you need to let it sit.
After some stirring, you can set it aside after wrapping in a plastic wrap. If you use a coffee filter, you should see the color dividing in many shades, just like the fall leaves do.
“Steam” Powered Boat
Making a boat is possible at home with this fun experiment. Imagine a boat operating without a battery? It might sound like it’s impossible, but it can be done in this experiment. You’ll need baking soda and white vinegar along with plastic bottles and straws.
After decorating the boat, make a hole in the bottom and set the straw there. After filling it with baking soda and white vinegar, a chemical reaction will take place and the bottle will start to move!
This is a great experiment that needs to be done in a large group. All you need is some diet soda and mentos. After opening the diet soda bottle, position it so that it doesn’t topple over.
While dropping the mentos, you have to be very cautious and use a test tube to hold it or make our own paper tube. Once you load the mentos inside the soda, the drink will erupt. This is the most fun part – running away just before this happens!
This one is another solo experiment. It teaches kids about how heat melts ice and how long it takes. Taking a few ice cubes and different colored square papers, add a few drops of food color.
As the ice melts one by one, you will observe how fast or slow they melt in both winter and summer. This is a simple experiment for observing the change during melting and understanding why something melts faster or slower.
Egg Crystal Geodes
This experiment lets you make eggs! If you want your kids to learn about how molecules form bonds, this chemistry experiment is a must try. You will need a plastic container, Elmer’s glue, hot water, and alum.
Take the cleaned egg shell, paint the glue on it, and let it dry for several hours. After it is dried properly, let the egg shell sit in the alum solution for 12 to 15 hours. Finally, you will end up with some colorful egg geodes.
This rainbow experiment is easy to do, but the final result is amazing. It teaches kids how liquid density can change by mixing sugar or any other material. The different shades of rainbow are visually appealing and will definitely brighten the mood.
In each water solution, add more or less sugar for creating different densities. Once dye is added to the glasses, the color will separate according to density levels. Just by looking at the solution, you can tell which part is dense and which is light.
Walking on Eggs
Imagine walking on eggs without cracking them! It’s not a miracle at all – just science. This is a great experiment to learn how weight distribution works for any object. To do this experiment, spread a plastic bag on the floor and arrange egg cartons in double rows on top of it.
Putting one foot on one carton and another on the other one, anyone can stand tall on top of the eggs without hearing a single crack. This one works because the weight is distributed equally over the eggs.
What if you can make a huge dollop of toothpaste with simple ingredients? This experiment will teach kids all about heat produced during a chemical reaction and earn some giggles too. First, you need to prepare the yeast by letting it sit in warm water.
After it starts to clump, add peroxide and dish soap. Goggles are recommended for this experiment for safety. Then add some glitters and dye, and the experiment is done. The solution will increase in volume, and you’ll end up with a huge scoop of toothpaste.
This experiment is a great example of how electricity works. You can do this one simply using some potatoes and wirings. First, you have to insert a galvanized nail near the middle of the potato and then insert a copper coin.
After connecting one clip with a copper coin, the lead of the voltmeter, and another one with the galvanized nail, the circuit will be complete. Now you will see voltmeter giving readings, confirming that electricity is flowing through the circuit.
Sketch a Shadow
Here’s another solar experiment, but this time, it is about figuring out how the Earth moves around the sun – an important lesson for all kids. The great thing about this experiment is that you don’t need anything fancy.
Just take a colorful paper and place a toy on it. The shadow of the toy will fall over the sheet. Drawing the outer line of the shadow, you will end up with a beautiful sketch!
This experiment gives a simple demonstration on how sublimation works. The end result looks like an artwork. First, we need some materials such as highlighter markers or a glow stick, dish liquid, tonic water, and black light.
After mixing the glowing liquid with the water and dish liquid, all you need to do is turn the light off. After a while, you will see the bubble glowing in the dark!
Did you know that cereals have a high amount of iron? This experiment shows how metals like iron are magnetic. This experiment only requires some cereal, magnet, water, and a clear bottle.
At first, fill half of the bottle with water and add the cereal. After shaking the bottle a few times, bring a magnet near the bottle. Then watch as the iron in the cereal stack up near the magnet due to the magnetic force.
Film Canister Rocket
You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to make a rocket. In this experiment, a film canister rocket is made using simple items available at home. For this experiment, you’ll need a plastic bottle with a snap top, water, Alka-Seltzer tablets, and cardboard.
You can do this with vinegar and baking soda too. At first, the rocket shell has to be made using the cardboards. The reaction will produce huge thrust force, and the rocket will soar upwards.