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BIG Little Science Centre Secret Recipes

Giant Soap Bubbles

This recipe makes 4 litres of soap bubble solution, and allows you to make a LOT of bubbles.   Fill a 4 litre plastic container about ¾ full with water. Add 325 ml of Classic Blue Dawn (or Classic Ivory) dishwashing soap to the water. Add 150 ml of glycerine (or corn syrup) to the water. Finish filling the container with water. Seal. Mix thoroughly and let settle for 24 hours before using. Measurements do not have to be exact.   Bubble makers may be purchased commercially or handmade from straws, string, rope or by stretching out hangers. Use your imagination and other objects at home to create bubble wands. As long as you are able to completely immerse the object into the bubble solution, you should get some amazing bubbles.   Bubbles are easiest to make on calm, damp days. Try making bubbles in the winter and see if you can hear the bubbles break! On dry days try adding a bit more water to you bubble solution.

 

Cornstarch Goop

 Cornstarch Goop is a suspension of particles in water. Place 2 cups of cornstarch into a flat pan with sides. Add 1.5 cups of water to it and mix thoroughly with your hands, turning the mixture over and over repeatedly until all the water has mixed in.  

Touch the top of the Goop with one finger and SLOWLY push down. What happens? Next, QUICKLY slap the top of your Goop with an open hand. What happens? Place a penny on the surface of the Goop. Does it sink or float? Try to pick up some Goop. How does it feel now? Try to pick up some Goop and squeeze it. Now open your hand. What happens? Do you think Goop is more like a liquid or a solid? Could you walk on Goop? How?   Cornstarch Goop is unusual because it has properties of both a liquid and a solid. Substances that act like this are called non-Newtonian fluids.

Goop Racing: Line up in two teams along both sides of a table outside. On both sides, place a container of Goop at one end and an empty container at the other end. You may only use your hands to lift as much as possible from the container at each side. On “go,” the first person in the team passes Goop to the next person, until it reaches the last person who places it in empty container. The team to fill the container first wins the game.

 

Volcano Lava or Safe Elephant Toothpaste

 Using simple kitchen ingredients, it is easy to make a lava explosion. This may occur in a glass or a fancier form of a homemade volcano. Please note the food dye may stain, so work on a surface that will contain the lava flow and not be damaged.   Place 50 ml of baking soda into a glass. In another glass mix a few ml (a squirt or two) of dishwashing soap and a few drops of food dye to 100 ml of vinegar. Pour the vinegar mixture into the baking soda, step back and enjoy. Experiment with different amounts of everything to see if you can create an even more impressive eruption.

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