Saturday, June 18, 2011

Fizzy, Foaming Sugar Sticks For the 4th of July - Like Fireworks for Your Mouth



Did you ever eat powdered Kool-Aid when you were a child? You're among friends here, it's okay to admit it.

Have you ever made a vinegar, and baking soda volcano with your children?

You know vinegar's not the only acid, that will create a fizzy, foaming reaction with baking soda.


The real trick is getting the right mixture, so you have enough baking soda, and citric acid to react nicely together, when water (or saliva) is added...




...but not so much baking soda that it takes away from the Kool-Aid, and sugar flavor.


We found starting out with a mixture of one cup of sugar, and two packets of unsweetened, cherry, Kool-Aid, then mixing 1 tablespoon of that, with 1/8 teaspoon of baking soda, came out about right.


We liked it so much, we packed ours into straws, for a patriotic, pixy stick style treat, for the 4th.


We (mainly I, at this point, as this part is not really child-friendly), melted the bottom end of plastic straws, in the flame of a candle...


...crimped the hot plastic shut, with needle nose pliers...



...and trimmed them, with scissors, for a neat edge.


We (the children returned for this part, but I wouldn't recommend it just after mopping the kitchen floor) used a paper funnel to fill the straws with the powder, up the the bottom of the bendy part (did I mention they were bendy straws?).


Then, I sealed the top end of the straws...


...which then became the bottom ends, bent over, and taped...


...so if the seal breaks open, the powder won't spill out all over the floor.


We made up 25 straws to share with friends on the 4th, and still had plenty of powder mix left, for the children to sample. They went wild for the stuff, and who can blame them? I mean really, it's sugar, red dye, a baking soda and acid reaction you can eat, with a cherry candy flavor to boot. How's that for a science lesson?

Linked with:

Science Sunday


It's great to be a homeschooler.

10 comments:

Wonder Mom said...

Awesome, awesome, awesome, AWESOMENESS!!!!

(Hey, did I mention how AWESOME I think this idea is?)

Monique said...

Sorry I missed something. You wrote, "We found starting out with a mixture of one cup of sugar, and two packets of unsweetened, cherry, Kool-Aid, then mixing 1 tablespoon of that, with 1/8 teaspoon of baking soda, came out about right." What is 1 tbsp of that? Are you meaning citric acid? Just wanted to make sure I didn't make a mistake if I decide to give it a try myself. I think my kids would love this!

An Almost Unschooling Mom said...

Monique - No problem - the tablespoon is of the sugar and Kool-Aid mixture. So for every tablespoon of the mixture, you need 1/8 teaspoon of baking soda.

Christy said...

Wow! This is so cool! You are amazing. I never would have thought to try this! This is going on my MUST DO list!!!!

Phyllis said...

This may be your cleverest post yet. We made our own pop rocks like this at a co-op once by adding some citric acid (from the pharmacist) to the Kool Aid and Baking Soda. Perhaps the added citric acid meant one didn't have to add as much baking soda...I am not sure. Anyway, I lost the recipe, so I am going to try this one.

Ticia said...

That is way too amazingly cool! I can't wait to try it out!

Sharla said...

Fun idea! I never would have thought of it and especially wouldn't have known how to seal the straws. Great idea!

Not So Average Mama said...

How fun!

Leah C said...

Sounds like fun! We'll have to try this.

Raising a Happy Child said...

This science lesson sounds pretty yummy, even though it's kind of chemical. But, after all, all food is chemistry anyway.