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Wichita Falls Living Magazine

Valentines Science Experiments

Valentines Day doesn't have to be all about sweet treats.  Try out these sweet experiments from The Best Ideas for Kids with your Jr Valentines!

Valentine Slime


 
What kid doesn't love slime?!  This is a fun craft to make and can be given as a gift with the free "Happy Valen-slime Day" printable tag from thebestideasforkids.com.

Ingredients Needed to Make Valentine Slime

  • 1 Bottle of Elmer’s Glitter Glue (6 oz).  We used red and pink. Note: We have only tested this with Elmer’s glitter glue and recommend this brand as other brands may not work.
  • 1 TBSP or more (up to 1 cup) water which will make your slime stretchier.
  • Red & Pink Glitter
  • 1/2 TBSP Baking Soda
  • 1½ TBSP of Contact lens solution. **Important: your brand of contact lens solution must contain boric acid and sodium borate. See our full contact solution slime recipe for the brands we recommend.
Safety Tips: Adults only should make the slime and handle all chemicals. Do not substitute any ingredients in our slime recipes. If you have sensitive skin, wear gloves while playing with the slime. Always wash hands before and after use.  If you notice any skin irritation discontinue use immediately. See the bottom of the post for more safety precautions.

Steps for How to Make Slime With Contact Solution:

1. Get a bowl to mix your slime ingredients in.

2. Pour your entire 6 oz Elmer’s Glitter Glue into the bowl (or 3/4 cup of glue from a larger bottle).

3. Add your 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda and mix in thoroughly. Also, add up to 1/4 cup of water if you want a more stretchy slime.

4. Slowly add in your contact lens solution (Reminder: your contact lens solution should contain boric acid or your slime will not form).  Add it in slowly and mix if possible so that you can adjust and ensure you do not add too much.  We like to add in 1 tablespoon to start and then mix. Then slowly add in the rest.  Knead and mix thoroughly before adding more as you do not want to add too much or your slime will get too hard.

5. Now mix until your slime forms and begins to harden.  Take it out and knead, knead, knead. You may be surprised how much you need to knead to really make the slime form. It will be very sticky at this point. Especially if you added water. Keep kneading and stretching the slime and it will become less sticky.  If it’s not the desirable consistency keep kneading. Only add a little more contact solution a teaspoon at a time to prevent the slime from becoming too hard.  If you still find it to still be too sticky, add a little bit of lotion or baby oil to your hands.


Borax Crystal Hearts


 
Another fun Valentine’s day science experiment is growing your own borax crystal hearts. These will start to form within 24 hours and it’s a really fun science experiment for kids to observe!

Here is what you will need:

  • A mason jar
  • Borax (adults only to handle)
  • Boiling water (adults to assist)
  • Red pipe cleaners and craft sticks

Steps for How to Make Borax Crystal Hearts:

1. Add 3 tablespoons of borax powder for every 1 cup of boiled water into a mason jar.  Stir to make sure all of the borax dissolves in your water.  Adults only should do this part – the boiled water in the jar will be very hot and borax is a chemical that only adults should handle. Please keep borax out of reach from young children. It is best to wear protective eye gear during this step as well.

2.  Make a heart from a pipe cleaner. Use another pipe cleaner to twist it onto a popsicle stick. The popsicle stick will rest on top of your mason jar to allow the heart to hang inside the solution.  Make sure your heart is small enough to fit into the mason jar with some extra space for where the crystals will grow. This is so that you can remove the crystal heart from the mason jar once the crystals are fully formed.

3. Add your heart pipe cleaner into your jar with borax solution and let it sit for 24 hours.  Check in throughout the day to see the progress of your crystals growing on the pipe cleaner!

4. After 24 hours you should have fully formed crystals on your heart! You may even get some crystals formed on the bottom of your jar.

The science behind it:

When you mix the borax powder with hot water, the hot water molecules are moving really fast which allows more borax to dissolve into it.  When the water mixture starts to cool, these water molecules slow down and then move closer together.  This leaves less room for the dissolved borax and it begins to separate out of the water.  As the borax “falls” out of the water mixture it bonds with other borax and will start to crystallize on the pipe cleaner heart. The borax continues to crystallize on the heart until you remove it out of the water.

Working with Borax Safety Reminders:
Adults only should handle the borax. Always read and follow the labels of products used.
Borax can be harmful if swallowed, inhaled or if it gets into your eyes.
To minimize borax dust from spreading in the air when doing this experiment, always add the water first into the container and then add the borax.


Magic Milk Heart Experiment


 
Watch the "magic" interaction with this final experiment! 

Here is what you will need:

  • Milk – high-fat milk works better (we used 3.25%)
  • Dish soap
  • Food Coloring – red and pink
  • Heart-shaped cake pan or regular pan – you can also use small heart cookie cutters
  • Cotton swabs or cotton balls

Steps to do a Magic Milk Experiment:

1. First pour some milk into your heart-shaped cake pan. You don’t need that much milk, just a small layer.

2. Add some drops of food coloring into your milk.

3. Now dip a cotton swab into some dish soap. You can also soak a cotton ball. Gently tap the cotton swap onto your food coloring or drop your cotton ball in. Now watch the magic!

The science behind it: 

Milk has tiny amounts of fat. The secret to the explosion is the soap. When the soap is added to the milk, we are seeing the soap molecules moving around trying to join up with the fat molecules.  The food coloring molecules get moved around in the process, showing us what is happening between the milk fat and the soap.  Once the soap and milk gets evenly mixed the movement of the food coloring stops.  Higher fat milk will produce more explosion because there is more fat to mix with the soap.

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