Posts Tagged ‘eggs’

Fruit and Veggie Dyed Eggs

April 2, 2010

I’ve always wanted to try making natural egg dye, and when I saw the how-to article by Lee Svitak Dean in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, I decided to give it a go.  The dying part involves boiling, so is best done by a parent, but your child will have fun wrapping the dyed eggs in onion skins and rubbing them with colorful spices!  I cleaned out my freezer and found frostbitten blueberries and chopped spinach to use for two of my dyes.  A head of red cabbage and bottle of curry worked for the other two.  Boil colorful fruit, vegetables and spices with 4-8 cups water and a few Tbs. of white vinegar.  When the water is boiling, add raw eggs and boil for 10 minutes. 

The pigment in the fruits and veggies will be absorbed by the egg’s porous surface as they cook.  Let sit until cool.  You can chill them in the dye over night for more intense color.  Then, wrap the wet eggs in onion skins or rub with paprika for yellow.  We also smeared blueberries and sprinkled sea salt on our eggs.   Experiment with different dyes!

 We had the best luck with blueberries, curry and red cabbage.  Spinach didn’t work so well.  What worked best for you?  Don’t forget to eat your creations.  Hard-boiled eggs make a great snack!

Throwing Eggs-Backyard Physics

June 21, 2009

IMG_2867

Next to the kitchen table, my back yard (or front yard) is my favorite science laboratory.  It has the added bonus of being easy to clean up.  For this fun, messy experiment, a hose and a few paper towels did the trick. 

My dad, who is a physicist, told me about this great demonstration that teaches kids a little bit about motion and force while letting them do something that they are rarely, if ever, allowed to do- throw eggs!  All you need is a sheet, some clothespins or string, raw eggs, and some paper.  You could use newspaper or easel paper.  It is just to make cleaning up easier.  I also used a portable table turned on its side as a wall, but you could just use a wall and have your child hose it off when you are finished.

Hang the sheet up from a tree, if you have one.  If you don’t have a tree, you could hang it from anything else, or have two tall children or adults hold it.  Then have two children hold the bottom of the sheet up, or tie it to chairs  so it makes a J shape when you view it from the side.  The idea is to keep the eggs from hitting the ground and breaking. 

IMG_2866

Have your child throw a raw egg at the sheet as hard as they can.  It won’t break because the sheet slows the egg down.  The law of motion says that the faster you change speed, the greater the force.  When you change the speed of the egg slowly, like the sheet does, it lessens the force of the egg stopping and the egg remains intact.

Now, put some paper on a wall (or table like we did.)  Have your child throw the egg at the wall.  They will see what happens when something stops fast.  Once again, the law of motion rules.  When you change the speed of the egg quickly, it stops with a lot of force.  SPLAT.  My kids loved this part.  I had to stop them from using all my eggs. 

IMG_2873

Tell them that this is one reason they put airbags in cars.  If a car is moving and hits something, causing it to stop very quickly, the airbag act like the sheet, slowing the person in the car down and greatly reducing the amount of force they might hit the dashboard with. 

Have your child record their results in their science notebook, if they want to.  They can write or draw what they did, write the word force and record how many eggs they threw and which ones broke. 

Finally, make sure they wash their hands when they’re done playing and cleaning up.  Remind them that raw eggs can have a bacteria called Salmonella living in them and on them. 

Have fun!

Three Easy Eggsperiments

October 16, 2008

I am cooking hard-boiled eggs as I write so that we can do a quick experiment before dinner.  My children will almost always drop whatever they’re doing for a fun science project.  I am always thrilled to see them so enthusiastic about something that doesn’t involve screen time or sugar.

OK, the eggs are done, I just ate one, and it was delicious!  Now for the experiments.

The first experiment we’ll do involves a glass bottle who’s neck is a little smaller than a hard-boiled egg, three matches, adult supervision, and the hard-boiled egg itself.  It’s called Egg-in-a-Bottle.  I went out to my recycling bin and discovered that my Trader Joe’s grape juice bottle is the perfect size. 

The hardest part of this experiment was getting the label off of the bottle, which you don’t have to do.  In fact, I’d recommend just leaving it on.  Peel the hard boiled egg, set it on the bottle, and let your children verify that it won’t easily squeeze through.  Then, remove the egg, light three matches and drop them into the bottle.  They may not stay lit for long, but it doesn’t matter.  Do it fairly quickly.  I had the best luck dropping them it unlit end first.  Then, simply set the egg back on top of the bottle before the matches go out and watch it be sucked in.  (My matches were out just before I put the egg back on top of the bottle, and it still worked.)  It’s pretty cool!

Ask your kids what they think happened.  Have them draw a picture of the egg in the bottle in their science notebooks!  The matches heat the air in the bottle.  When the matches go out, the air rapidly cools, decreasing the air pressure in the bottle.  The outside air, who’s pressure is higher actually pushes the egg into the bottle as it attempts to equalize the pressure inside of the bottle.

A fun follow-up experiment is to dissolve eggshells using vinegar.  Just put two raw eggs into two juice glasses and cover them with (white or cider) vinegar.  Have your kids check them the next day.  The shells will have been dissolved by the vinegar, which is an acid.  You might want to gently rinse the eggs with water before they handle them.  Only the membrane of the egg will remain, which is like a rubbery balloon.  It’s pretty neat.  Have them draw or record what happened and how long it took to dissolve the shells, if they want to.

You can then pour off the vinager and cover one egg with water and the other with corn syrup.  Leave them for 24 hours in the refrigerator and see what happens.  Have your child record their results!  From what I understand, the balloon-like membrane will let water molecules pass through and appear even more balloon-like when filled with water.  I can’t wait to see what happens with the corn syrup egg.  I’m guessing that the membrane may not let the corn-syrup molecules through.  That’s my “hypothesis”, but I won’t know until we complete the experiment. 

What is your child’s hypothesis?

Remind your children to wash their hands after handling raw eggs!