Monday, August 2, 2010

Baking Soda Rockets...

This investigation is so much fun!  My Kid Scientists spent two hours with their rockets!

Ages: Little Kids will enjoy the show, but this is for the Big Kid Scientists

Materials: baking soda, vinegar and a film canister
Note: Kid Scientists will use all the materials available.  Unless you want them to use the whole box and whole bottle, give them materials in smaller containers.  
Note #2: After much trial & error the Science Mommy's middle school students discovered that the clear plastic (Fuji) film canisters work best.  Ask at your local photo counter for donations (this is where ours came from)

  • Mix baking soda with vinegar in a film canister
 This is the focus of the investigation.  Kid Scientists will need to determine the most effective ratio of baking soda to vinegar for the best rocket.  My Kid Scientists filled the well of the lid with baking soda every time as the constant and then varied the amount of vinegar for each launch.  (Check out the details on VARIABLES here!
  • Lock the lid onto the base

  • Place upside down on the driveway
 This part of the investigation requires a lot of practice! Encourage Kid Scientists to use smaller amounts of vinegar until they have mastered the technique of locking on the lid and setting the canister on the driveway.
Safety Note: The rocket does not launch with much force.  Kid Scientists should not hold the rocket to launch, or hold their face directly over the rocket prior to launch. With those two rules in mind, as well as supervision, no on will get hurt.
  • Enjoy the rocket show!
 My Kid Scientists were having so much fun, the neighbors came over to see what was going on...
It was irresistible... Jack and Payton needed to try out rockets for themselves!

2 Science Moms have commented...:

ligoacoma said...


It sounds brilliant!

My daughter is now 5 years old, but maybe we can try with a lot of careful and vigilance.

You have a very inspiring blog. Many thanks for sharing all these science experiences!

Take care,

fluteaphone said...

Did you know that you can also use Alka Seltzer and Water to launch rockets? (You just need 1/4 of a Tablet and half a film case of water...