Wednesday, December 2, 2009

baking soda a vinegar experiment - chemical reactions

Almost everyone knows that baking soda and vinegar create a bubbly reaction but not very many know what is actually happening in detail. This experiment teaches kids what is actually happening with this chemical reaction.

Materials needed:
One 20 oz soda bottle with label removed
One balloon
Baking soda

Time needed: about 10 minutes

The payoff: not only do you see the chemical reaction but you also get to see the balloon fill up with the carbon dioxide gas that is escaping.

  • Place 1-2 tablespoons of baking soda in the bottle. If need be, you can roll up a piece of notebook paper to use as a funnel.
  • Pour as much vinegar into the deflated balloon as you can.
  • Stretch the balloon over the mouth of the bottle but don’t let the vinegar spill in yet

For the experiment, tip the empty balloon up to let the vinegar pour into the bottle. The reaction will release a lot of co2 gas which will fill up the balloon.

Discussions: Since the gas is invisible, the balloon will help you illustrate that the acid (vinegar) and the base (sodium bicarbonate (baking soda)) react together to help release carbon dioxide into the air.

These chemical reactions are happening in your body too though on a much smaller scale. Remember that co2 is what we breathe out.

For a more violent (outside) reaction, use a 2-liter of diet coke and the candy mentos that come in a roll.

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