Not all science projects have to be a major challenge and take specialized equipment. There are definitely some that can be done with materials found at home. There are lots of science projects you can do at home during the rainy days or summer season which will give you and your kids loads of fun. What’s great is that you don’t need to go out and buy materials because you will be able to do them with the use of common household items you have.
If you’re a parent and wondering what activities will keep your children occupied or what bonding activity you both can do, why not try making science projects? It is a great activity and aside from entertaining them, you will be educating them as well. If you’re on for some experiments, then we are going to give you a list of science projects you can do at home using common household items.
1. Separating Water
For this science project, the household items you need are two identical glasses, salt, water, food coloring, and a sheet of paper. First, fill the glasses with water. After that, add two tablespoons of salt to the water in one glass and stir well. The, add a few drops of food coloring to the water in the other glass.
Cover the glass of colored water with a sheet of paper then place it on top of the glass with salt water upside down. Do this over a saucer or bowl to avoid making a mess. Gently pull the paper out between the glasses. You will notice that the colored water will remain separate.
This is because salt water is heavier compared to colored water and they will stay separate as long as their boundary is not disturbed. When you try to turn the two glasses over, the heavier salt water will be one top, making it flow down and mix with the colored water.
2. Floating Trash Bag
For this project, the household items you need are a black trash bag, hair dryer, tape, and string. Hold the mouth of the trash bag and use a hair dryer to blow hot air in it. Once it’s filled with hot air, seal the mouth of the bag with tape. The, tie a long piece of string around the tape for your handle. Go out and watch the bag rise slowly into the air. It’s better to do this in an open area during a windless day.
This happens because since the trash bag is black, it absorbs heat from the sun making the air inside it expand and become lighter. When the air inside as well as the bag is lighter than the surrounding air, the bag will start to rise.
3. A Walking Can
For this experiment, the items you will need are an empty aluminum can, balloon and tissue. Place the empty aluminum can on the floor on its side. The, blow up the balloon and tie a knot in the end. Rub the tissue on the balloon back and forth. After that, put the balloon near the can and you will see the can will roll toward the balloon.
This is because when you rub the balloon with a tissue, it will get a negative electric charge. When you place the balloon near the can, electrostatic induction affects the molecules in the metal. The outer part of the can gets a positive charge that’s why it is drawn toward the balloon.
4. Lava Lamp
The things you need to make a lava lamp at home are, transparent jar with an airtight lid, water, vegetable oil, food coloring, salt, torch, and glitter if you want.
First, fill the jar with ¾ water. Then, add food coloring until you have your desired color and add glitters if you like. After that, fill the jar almost to the top with oil then leave it for 15 minutes to settle. After 15 minutes, add teaspoons of salt and you will start to see a lava-lamp effect. You can shine a flashlight through the jar for a complete effect. The oil will return to the surface when the salt dissolves completely. If you want to see the effect again, just add more salt.
5. A Candle That Sucks Water
For this project, the household items needed are a candle, a saucer, a glass, and some water. First, place the candle in the middle of a saucer in an upright position. Then, fill the saucer with water and light the candle. Place a glass over the candle. Once the flame goes out, the water in the saucer will be sucked into the glass.
This happens because when the candle is burning inside the glass, the heat makes the air expand and some of the air escapes outside the glass. After the candle uses up all the oxygen, the fire will go out and the air inside the glass cools. As the air cools, the pressure inside the glass drops. The carbon dioxide formed by the flame also dissolves in water which decreases the pressure even more. With that, the water outside the glass on the saucer is forces into the glass because of the higher air pressure outside.
6. Putting Egg into a Bottle
For this project, you will need a soft-boiled egg, hot water, and a glass bottle with a mouth that is slightly smaller in diameter than an egg. First, put some hot water carefully into the bottle then shake it vigorously. After that, empty the bottle. Peel the soft-boiled egg and place it on the mouth of the bottle and leave it there for a while. You will notice that it will eventually get sucked inside the bottle.
This happens because the vapor from the hot water drives the air out of the bottle. When the egg becomes sealed on top of the bottle, the air will not be able to get back in. When the water vapor cools, it will turn back into water which causes the pressure inside the bottle to drop. Due to the high pressure of the air outside, it pushes the egg into the bottle.
7. Self-Inflating Balloon
For this project, the things needed are used, washed carbonated drink bottle, latex balloon, electric band, measuring jug, yeast, sugar, and water. First, put 2 teaspoons of yeast, 1 teaspoon of sugar, and 1 cup of water into the bottle. Then, put the balloon over the top of the bottle and secure it with the elastic band. Leave it for a moment but watch it closely as the balloon inflates.
This happens because yeast is a microorganism that will eat sugar and respire. Carbon dioxide is a product of respiration which slowly fills up the balloon.
For this science project, the things you need are a metal bucket, 32 oz. of table salt, six 16 oz. bottled water, 2 bags of crushed ice and water, thermometer, and lots of patience.
First, take three to six sealed plastic bottles of mineral water and place them in your bucket. Pour in a bag of ice then add water so that the ice will become slushy. Make sure that the bottles are evenly spaced in the bucket and their lids are sticking out the top of the ice and water mixture for you to handle them without freezing your fingers. Pour in the salt, 26 oz. for 3 bottles and 32 oz. for 6 bottles of mineral water. Then place the thermometer in the bucket.
Leave it for 35 to 45 minutes but keep on checking the bottles and turn them gently so that they cool evenly. After the given time, you will notice a thin layer of ice on the outside of your metal bucket. Take the bottle out and turn it on its side. Swing it lightly back and then hit it against a wall. You will see the water slowly change color and turns to ice.
9. Toothpick Torpedo
This one is very easy. You only need shampoo, a toothpick, and a pan of water. On the blunt end of a wooden toothpick, dab a little shampoo. After that, drop the toothpick in a pan of water. You will see the toothpick start moving in the direction of its sharp end.
This happens because shampoo contains agents that reduce the surface tension of liquids. As the shampoo dissolves, it reduces the water’s surface tension around it, releasing the water’s hold on the end of the toothpick. Since the water around the other end of the toothpick still has surface tension, it pulls the toothpick in that direction.
10. Light Bending Through Water
For this science project, you will need a clear plastic bottle, scissors, flashlight, and some water. First, punch a hole in a clear plastic bottle two inches from the bottom. After that, place your finger over the hole and fill the bottle with water and then cap it to keep it from draining out.
Turn off the lights to darken the room then cover part of a flashlight with your fingers to make the beam narrower. When you remove the cap from the bottle, the water will flow out in an arc. Shine the flashlight at the stream for the side of the bottle opposite the hole. You will see the light bend with the arc and create a bright glow where the water hits the sink.
This happens because when the light in the stream strikes the boundary between the water and air, most of the light is reflected back into the stream. This internal reflection is continued all along the arc formed by the falling water. This is the same principle that is used to transmit light signals through flexible optic fibers.
These are some of the best science projects you can do at home using common household items. You don’t really have to spend that much to be able to come up with an interesting science project. Sometimes, you just need to be creative to be able to use the readily available materials you have at home. We hope the list we shared will help you decide what science project you will do next at home.