"Let us strive to make each moment beautiful."

"Let us strive to make each moment beautiful."
Saint Francis DeSales

Summer Fun #43: Fizzy Explosion Bags

Over the years we have had much fun with the chemical reaction that occurs between baking soda and vinegar. When they were young, they just played/experiment with the two, often with a package of liquid food coloring, pretending to be a scientist or a magician. As they each got a little older, they learned why this reaction occurs. Playing with this reaction never ceases to be fun, though, even if you know why.
When I saw this variation of this theme on Superheroes and Princesses, in which the goal is to make a sandwich bag pop with the power of baking soda and vinegar, I knew my boys would enjoy this as a summer activity.
You can see the already made packets on the left.

Tear a paper towel into a square that measures about 5 inches by 5 inches. Put 1 1/2 tablespoons of baking soda in the center of the square, then fold the sides of the square in toward the middle, and then the opposite sides in toward the middle, with the baking soda inside. This is your "time-release packet."



Pour into your plastic bag, 1/2 cup of vinegar and 1/4 cup of warm water.

Now here's the tricky part. You need to drop the time-release packet into the vinegar and zip the bag closed before the fizzing gets out of control. You can zip the bag halfway closed, then stuff the packet in and zip the bag closed the rest of the way in a hurry, or you can put the time-release packet into the mouth of the bag and hold it up out of the vinegar by pinching the sides of the bag. Zip the bag closed and then let the packet drop into the vinegar. One way or another, get the packet in the vinegar and zip the bag closed.


Shake the bag a little, put it in the sink or on the ground, and stand back! The bag will puff up dramatically and then give a satisfying pop sound.




"POP!"
Be prepared to do this several times.
The boys suggested that they were like time-released bombs and are thinking of a way of including it in a party with a spy theme.
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35 comments:

  1. oh wow, my boys would love that!!! hahahahaha

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  2. Yes! After seeing Christy's post this is on our to-do list, too. So much fun!

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  3. My kids would love this!!
    We did a spy part for Kaia's 6th birthday. She loved it. And, yes, we did have things exploding. We filled black balloons with clues to their next mission. The kids had to pop the balloons to get their clue. But, what they didn't know was the we also stuffed the balloons with shaving cream. HaHa!!

    Here's my post about our spy party http://homemakerswhowork.wordpress.com/2009/06/28/super-spy-party/

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  4. I just saw this at Christy's blog, and added it to our list of fun things to try this summer!

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  5. I'll have to show my boys your pictures! That is great that you caught the progression as the bag expanded.

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  6. What fun!! Love the hands over the eyes - the anticipation!! :)

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  7. I still think that looks like so much fun.

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  8. We did this once, but we added color. It was a blast for those boys. :)

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  9. We'll have to try this too!

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  10. We saw this on a post on Pinterest, and had to try it! My boys thought it was just brilliant! We tried to count down to when we thought the bag would burst, and they had such fun anticipating when it would happen! Thank you for a great activity.

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  11. Brilliant idea- we'll be trying this :-)

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  12. Love this, so much fun and so easy!!

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  13. Looks like fun! We have to try this soon--before it gets too cold to do our science stuff outside!

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  14. Anonymous24.1.12

    I am a very bored mom, with my youngest son being 17! So I am gonna have to use this with the grand babies! It seems like maybe, this would be a toddler safe 4th of july bang! With adults doing the zipping of course! I wonder if the yellow highlighter trick, in the warm water, would do anything?

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  15. Gonna try this with my kids this summer (or maybe spring break!). Your blog looks like it will give me lots of good summer projects! Thanks!

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  16. we are off to try this right now!! :) Thanks for an idea that will make a dull afternoon fizz :)
    Blessings
    Ruth

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  17. This looks like so much fun! I found it on PINTEREST! I also follow your boards on pinterest and just love the way you organize. Each month has something extraordinary. :) I'm happy to have found your blog now too. I can't wait to check out your archives. :)

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  18. Anonymous20.4.12

    It's great how you spend time with your children. Thanks for sharing! God Bless!!

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  19. This looks like such a fun outdoor activity! Since this week is National Backyard Games week, I'm sharing some activities that parents can do outside with the littles...would it be alright to share this on my facebook page? I would love to link one from the Summer Carnival.
    Thanks, Gina @famiglia&seoul

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    Replies
    1. Yes, of course you may share it. It is a simple,fun thing to do outside together.

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  20. We had fun doing this, but what grade of bags did you use? I used the cheapy Walmart bags and they didn't pop very well. We finally doubled the recipe in a gallon sized no-name brand and it seemed to work better. Thanks for the fun activity!

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    Replies
    1. Ziploc brand sandwich bags, I believe.

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  21. I tried this science experiment with the kids and they LOVED it!!!! Thanks for sharing. I also posted it on my blog, it would be amazing to have any comment or suggestion from you :))), it may be this post or any other :)). Thanks!!!
    http://fabianacarters.blogspot.com/#

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  22. I wonder if you could put in the vinegar/water solution, twist the bag several times before adding the baking soda so it has a spot to rest, zip closed and then untwist?

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  23. Can't wait to try this with my 3yo boy. Even my 11yo girl will love to participate! Thanks for sharing the activity and pictures.

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  24. I am adding this to my list of experiments to do in the classroom for chemical reactions. They can each do this and will love it! Thanks for sharing.

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  25. Super cooo. Did with my son today :-). Thanks

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  26. Anonymous29.1.13

    Awesome! Going to try this one for sure.

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  27. Smart and fun way to teach about the chemical reaction!! Loved it.

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  28. Anonymous20.4.13

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  29. This looks really fun...kids would love this. Actually..I must be a big kid..because I want to try it now.

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  30. I did this three time and the bag would get huge and tight and would just.not.pop! Maybe my double zipper Ziplocks are too strong!? I followed instructions to a T. No idea why it wouldn't pop.

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    Replies
    1. I am not sure why it didn't work for you either, Julie. You might want to try it with regular Ziploc Sandwich bags. If that doesn't work, perhaps you might try adding a bit more baking soda and a bit more vinegar to your bag. Tinker and experiment around with it, and I am sure it will work for you.

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    2. Yup, my kids and I made an experiment (control bag with 3 variants) once the first bag didn't pop. Like Julie, it got big but didn't explode. The variants were: more baking soda, more liquid, removing the time release tissue paper. Oh, we also added food coloring in 2 of the bags for a, *cough*, pop of color. You may also want to check your Ziploc -type of bags because there may be a tiny hole near the zip line (on the extreme left or ride side). For the experiment to work you need an air tight seal EVERYWHERE :) Have fun.

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