Category Archives: Cool Products

The Flashing, Color Mixing, One-of-a-Kind White Lightning Stick

By Blog Editor Susan Wells

One of the biggest hits of the summer is the White Lightning Stick. On the Fourth of July, we held a small firework show in our front yard with our neighbors.

Along with the traditional sparklers and black snakes, we also shot off several film canister rockets and Mentos soda geysers. While the kids were waiting for the next activity, they played with the light sticks. Naturally, the sticks were first used as swords and weapons, but as the sun set, they began to really look at the light sticks and made observations.

Continue reading The Flashing, Color Mixing, One-of-a-Kind White Lightning Stick

Create a Rainbow in a Bag – Pinch and Mix Color Mixing

By Blog Editor Susan Wells

I’m occasionally asked by teachers and school groups to bring in a few hands-on science experiments for a class. One of my all-time favorite go -to activity is color mixing with Pinch and Mix goo. Steve Spangler Science sells and all-in-one Pinch and Mix Kit for 30 students or a smaller group. You can also use gel cake frosting if you want to do it yourself.

Start this activity with a literature connection by reading the book Mouse Paint by Ellen Stoll Walsh. Mouse Paint is a delightful story about three white mice who discover jars of red, yellow, and blue paint. Creativity ensues as the mice explore what happens when they begin to play in the puddles of paint. Wondrously, the three primary colors they began with become secondary colors as they play.

Now it is your turn to delight and discover. Discuss what the mice found and what happened after they were coated in one color paint and messed about in another color. Then make your own color connections by pretending you are little mice mixing the colors in your zipper-lock bag!

Squeeze 1 to 2 tablespoons of each color of goo into the bag. It’s best if you place one color in each corner and one in the middle. Then gently squeeze air out of the bag and seal it. Pinch and mix the colors together by blending the primary into secondary colors. The bag will start to take on a soft, stained glass look.

Hold it up to a light or a sunny window.

Some kids will gently and carefully blend their colors, but most will grab and squish the bag until the colors turn army green, grey and putrid purple. Don’t worry about a failed activity; the kids will still find beauty and discovery in their crazy-made colors.

Make sure you keep a Sharpie nearby, because the kids will want to bring home their creations.

For more on this fun and colorful activity, visit the Pinch and Mix Experiment page.

Pin Your Favorite Teacher Gifts to Give or Receive and Win a $100 Steve Spangler Gift Certificate

Contest Is Closed – Congratulations to our winners #4 & #13 comments – Sarah and Chelsey!

 

 

 

 

 

Parents – does your teacher have their fill of mugs, candles and smelly lotion? What are you giving your favorite teachers this year?

Teachers – what gifts do you appreciate the most? Gift cards, items for next year’s classroom, books, or hand-written notes and gifts?

We love and appreciate all teachers at Steve Spangler Science and want to help share ideas and favorites to help parents give their teachers the best this May. Our Teacher Appreciation Pinterest board has a ton of gift ideas for all kinds of budgets, teachers and craft levels.

What are your favorite gifts to give to your amazing teacher?

And teachers – what are your most memorable and favorite gifts to receive? Here is your chance to share with parents what teachers really appreciate and what gets re-gifted or forgotten. My daughter’s second grade teacher shared a clock that a student gave her a few years back. She still displays it proudly in her classroom.

Here’s how to Pin It to Win a $100 Gift Certificate to SteveSpanglerScience.com.

1. Visit Steve Spangler Science’s Pinterest page and Follow All.

2. Create a board on your Pinterest page and title it “Teacher Gifts.” For parents – in the description share why you appreciate your child’s teachers. For teachers – in the description, share why you enjoy teaching.

3. Pin at least 5 items from SteveSpanglerScience.com that you want to give to a teacher or want to receive as a teacher. You can start in our Teacher Gifts category, but don’t stop there, surf around and see what you can find. Don’t stop with 5 – pin away as long as you’d like. Please add other pins and ideas for teachers gifts that you have given, received, or found around the Internet. You are also welcome to repin from our Teacher Gifts board.

4. Include a Pin from this blog post on your Teacher Gifts board.

5. Leave a link to your board in the comments below. Two lucky winners will be chosen at random to win one of two $100 gift certificates to use on SteveSpanglerScience.com.

6. Complete your Teacher Gifts Pinterest board by midnight MST, Thursday May 23rd.

7. Steve Spangler Science will repin our favorite ideas found on your boards to share with our audience.

So what are you waiting for? Go get creative and get pinning!

 

Melt It, Blow It Up, Smash It But Don't Eat It – New Book Shares Lots of Candy Experiments

By Blog Editor Susan Wells

Our office recently received a copy of the new book, Candy Experiments, by Loralee Leavitt. If you love candy, but don’t want it to all go to your waistline, this book is for you.

Candy Experiments covers a wide variety of activities with what else? Candy. Learn about secret ingredients hidden in your favorite candy, then blow it up, smash it, freeze it, melt it and experiment every which way with it. So don’t eat all of that holiday candy, experiment with it. The best part of this book is all of the activities use candy and other household materials.

The experiments have easy to follow step by step instructions and a What’s Happening section. It isn’t big on the science, but it is something all parents can do with their kids on a lazy afternoon.

We have followed Loralee on Pinterest for awhile and have enjoyed seeing her playing with her food. She even showed us how to sink a marshmallow and use up that extra Halloween candy.

We received a complimentary copy of Candy Experiments to review. All comments are our own. 

Leprechaun Science Secrets – The Best Activities for St. Patrick's Day

During the month of March, everything starts to turn green, and not just the grass and trees. It’s leprechaun season. Time to catch a sneaky little devil who hides gold coins while wreaking havoc all over.

For years, we have shared our secret for surprising the kiddos on St. Paddy’s Day morning by turning all of the water green in your house. Just unscrew the screen in the faucet, place a blue and yellow Fizzy Tints True Color Tablet inside and carefully screw it back on. Wiping any drips. Don’t use Easter Egg coloring tablets – they will stain. In the morning, when the kids turn on the water, it will run green. You can also drop a few tablets in the toilet to turn that water green too.

But don’t stop there. Take the kids on a journey to explore all of the Leprechaun secrets. Uncover hidden rainbows, fish for Leprechauns with appearing green worms, use a little green magic to grow Leprechaun eggs and inflate a giant eight-foot long Leprechaun sandwich with only one breath.

If your kids like St. Patrick’s Day, they’ll love this Leprechaun Science kit – and you’ll enjoy the opportunity to conduct each of the activities with your young scientist. This kit comes complete with an activity guide and the scientific explanations behind all of the experiments. The all-in-one kit is only $34.99.

New this year – the Leprechaun-ologists at the Steve Spangler Science Labs have pulled together all of the best St. Patrick’s Day experiments and activities and put them in a downloadable PDF. This 21-page St. Patrick’s Day Science Experiment Guide contains additional experiments not found in the kit. Some experiments require science materials and others use stuff you can find around the house. (Psssst. Here’s another secret. Purchase the pdf and receive a discount for 20% off the Leprechaun Science Kit, if you miss today’s deal.) The PDF is available to download right now for only $5.00.

What does it teach?

The St. Patrick’s Day Science Experiment Guide uses different fields of science to capitalize on the St. Patrick’s Day holiday and make it a scientific learning experience that is fun and engaging.

  • Air movement and Bernoulli’s principle – The Leprechaun Bag
  • Light and refraction – Rainbow Glass and Leprechaun Eggs
  • Plants and movement of water – Color Changing Carnations
  • Polymers and water absorption – Leprechaun Snow and Green Worms
  • Design and fine motor skills – Leprechaun Footprints and Leprechaun Trap
  • Chemistry – Leprechaun Rainbow Milk and Leprechaun Treasure Polish
  • pH (acids and bases) – Magical Leprechaun Cabbage
  • Ultraviolet light and UV-reactive pigment – Rainbow Beads
  • Air movement and vacuums – Leprechaun Breakfast
  • Non-Newtonian fluids – Green Quicksand