Science Sunday: Kid led experiment


This is one of those experiments that my kids came up with all on their own.  They wanted to do a “speriment,” and they were quite determined we needed to do one.


Supplies (as envisioned by Batman): one watermelon emptied out of stuff; that white stuff that makes things explode (baking soda), pickle juice, and finally vinegar (you know the stuff in the big jar), oh and the white stuff you shake on my carpet to make it not smell bad (carpet cleaner or sometimes baking soda).

Do you know how hard it was to guess what he was referring to?

011 First, cut a hole in the top of your watermelon and then put it on a cookie sheet to contain most of the mess.  I also put it on top of aluminum foil and wrapped that up around it, to help Batman get the results he wanted.

At first we couldn’t find baking soda, so we tried the carpet cleaner with pickle juice (also known as salt water).  This didn’t get the reaction Batman was hoping for.  So we tried vinegar and that also didn’t react.

015So, we went on a shopping trip to get more baking soda.  Of course when I got home I found two big boxes that I swear were invisible before.
Again we tried the “pickle juice,” and it didn’t react as I predicted, and as Princess and Superman predicted.  Batman then insisted we needed to get out the vinegar.


Which of course did erupt as Batman had hoped, though not as much.  I think this is partially due to the fact that (and I looked this up a few weeks ago, so I may be misremembering), but watermelon is one of the more alkaline fruits.

018 017
But Batman got his money shot and got to see it all erupt, and so he was happy.

Do your kids ever come up with an experiment on their own?

9 thoughts on “Science Sunday: Kid led experiment

  1. I like Batman's thinking! My guess to not getting a terrific eruption would be the amount of space in the watermelon was too big for the amount of baking soda – not enough pressure building up, to really make it impressive – but the alkaline thought is interesting, too 🙂

  2. Selena loves to come up with her own experiments, hypothesis about things, and then testing or researching the results.

    I love Batman's idea, I tend to think it was a combination of both, your idea of the watermelon being more alkaline, and what Leah said about the size.

  3. This is a great experiment! I agree that the alkalinity combined with the size of the watermelon makes the most sense for it not reacting as much as would be ideal. I'm very impressed that Batman came up with this on his own!

  4. I think it is great that your son came up with this himself. Love his description of the supplies. You sound like me, going out to buy something and then finding it. I never realized that the reason I couldn't find my stuff originally was because it had been invisible. Thanks for clearing that up. Now I know I am not losing my mind or blind.

  5. Batman is definitely a future “blow stuff up” kid, but I like how he tried to find the exact combination of things that will work. Anna's latest idea for experiment was – “let's mix tooth paste with water and taste it”. Seriously – she called it an experiment.

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