STEM Activity: Plastic Egg Rockets
We're keeping with the theme of Earth Day and reuse on STEM Spark this week, and happily present this Plastic Egg Rocket experiment! Jack and I were excited to take some of his leftover plastic eggs and try out this science experiment we saw on Pinterest. You could even say we were egg-static!
Plastic Egg (No holes and breaks in half are requirements)
1) Set the bottom part of the plastic egg on the grounds. We lucked out with these chick eggs that can stand on there own, but if the plastic egg doesn't stand upright on its own, you can use an empty toilet paper roll as a stand for the plastic egg.
2) Fill the bottom part of the plastic egg completely. And I mean completely. We had issues with the top of the egg not blasting off if there wasn't enough water.
3) Drop in 1-2 Alka-Seltzer tablets and quickly fasten the top half of the plastic egg on top.
4) Step back and watch what the top half of the plastic egg blast off! Note: Be careful not to stand too close when the top of the egg pops off.
So what happens in this science experiment? The Alka-Seltzer is made of citric acid, which is well an acid, and sodium bicarbonate (aka baking soda), which is a base. When the tablets are dry, the acid and base powders don’t mix, but as soon as they are immersed in water they mix and react to form carbon dioxide. The carbon dioxide is what causes the plastic egg rocket to blast off!
The first time we did Alka-Seltzer rockets with Jack he was a little over 2, so I think this is a great STEM activity to do with children 2 and up (again just make sure everyone is standing back when the top of the plastic egg pops off). I think older children are going to enjoy being the ones to drop the Alka-Seltzer tablets into the plastic egg, and the very young ones will enjoy the surprise of the plastic egg launching (I know I do)! Happy STEM-ing and reusing and all that good stuff! See you next week on STEM Spark!