• A bottle with a narrow neck
  • Vinegar
  • Baking soda
  • Funnel or straw
  • Water
  • Balloon

Pour about an inch of liquid--half vinegar, half water--into the bottle.

Use the funnel to fill the ballon half full of baking soda. (If you don't have a funnel, you can use a straw to load the balloon. Stick the straw into the baking soda, and put your finger over the top of the straw. Lift the straw out, put it into the balloon, and blow or tap gently.)

Stretch the open end of the balloon over the neck of the bottle. Make sure it's on tight! Let the heavy end of the balloon dangle, so no baking soda goes in the bottle.

Hold onto the ballon at the bottle neck, and pick up the heavy part of the balloon so that all the baking soda falls into the vinegar at the bottom of the bottle.

Wow! Hear the fizz? There are thousands of bubbles! And look at what's happening to the ballon...

For more bubble fun you'll need:

  • A can of clear soda (7-Up, Ginger Ale)
  • Raisins

Get a can of clear soda and shake it as hard as you can. Knock sharply on the top two or three times. Now open it. Or give it to a grown-up to open, if you dare. (This may be messy-so do it over the sink or outside.) What happens? What did you expect?

Now that your can of soda is open, pour it into a glass. Drop in five or six small raisins. Watch tiny bubbles form all over them. In a minute or so, the raisins will start to wiggle around and dance. Then they'll float up to the top of the soda. After a minute, they'll sink back down again. If you tap on the side of glass, they'll sink right away. How long will they keep dancing?

Fizzy liquids get into your intestines faster than other liquids. The bubbles in soda or Alka-Seltzer tickle the exit valve in your stomach, and it opens.

We would like to hear about your results and discoveries. Please send us an email message to Ken Finn.

Comments, questions, or corrections?
email: jfowler@exploratorium.edu

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