Monday, February 23, 2015

Science fair

Jacob and Claire decided they wanted to participate in the science fair this year.  Claire was going to participate with a friend, Leslee, and Jacob wanted to answer the question, "which will cause its lid to be shot further in the air - a mixture of Mentos and Diet Coke or a mixture of Alka-Seltzer and water?"  As is classic, the project became urgent when Jacob realized on Saturday that it was due the following Monday, so Saturday became a day of science projects.

We wound up doing 2 iterations of the experiments.  Experiment #1 involved smaller 20-oz bottles of water and Diet Coke.

The results were somewhat underwhelming.  The Mentos caused the Coke to fizz a bit - enough that I couldn't get the cap on - enough to be exciting.  The Alka-Seltzer caused the water bottles to expand, but not to shoot their caps off.

For experiment #2, we used a larger Diet Coke bottle and a smaller container for the water and Alka-Seltzer - a film canister.  The audience decided they wanted to keep their distance, expecting something way more exciting.

Fortunately, neither one disappointed!  The Diet Coke shot up into the air as tall as Jared, and the film canister cap shot into the air high enough that no one actually got to see and measure how high.

Jacob and Claire worked on the project's hypothesis, procedures, results, and conclusions, and mounted the pictures and text onto the board.  Just as they were finishing, Claire's friend Leslee, who Claire had discussed doing a project with, knocked on the door, and off Claire went to work on their project, which meant that Jacob was the one on this project.

Claire's project was a question of whether a volcano would erupt similarly the 2nd time to the way it erupted the first time.  The girls had a fun time doing some experiments with it.

The kids loved to stand by their projects, standing proudly anticipating questions from the parents and kids who were attending.  All in all, it was a pretty solid first effort into the world of science fair projects for the Jensen family!