Test the Power of Sunscreen with UV Color Changing Beads

Mom always warned you to never look at the sun, but what are you to do when your teacher encourages it?

Don’t worry… the kids are in the capable hands of Solar Science expert and teacher, Jim Stryder. I recently met up with Jim at the Western Colorado Math & Science Center in Grand Junction, Colorado where he showed me his latest science demos and experiments that are really getting kids jazzed about science.

Using UV Color Changing Beads to Test the Power of the Sun and Sunscreen

Jim is fascinated with UV Color Changing Beads and how they can be used to uncover “invisible” ultra-violet light. These beads change color (from white to a variety of colors) when they are expose to sunlight (UV light) and change back to white when you go indoors.

Literally thousands of teachers use them to teach kids about UV light and how to use the scientific method to test the power of sunscreen.

Use UV Color Changing Beads and Pill Bottles to Test UV Rays and Sunscreen

Jim (this guy is really smart!) recently discovered that pill bottles are made out of a special plastic that blocks UV light to protect the medication inside. Kids can use the bottles with UV Energy Beads to test the effectiveness of their sunblock and learn about ultra-violet filters.

Do you want to try this yourself? We’ve posted the entire Blocking UV Rays experiment and how to turn it into a science fair project in our Experiment Lab.

7 replies
  1. Darla Youngblood
    Darla Youngblood says:

    Jim Stryder came to my classroom and did an excellent
    presentation using the energy beads. Your products
    are the best I’ve ever seen.

    Darla Youngblood
    Clifton Elementary

  2. Sharmin Gugat
    Sharmin Gugat says:

    Jim Stryder has come to our classroom these past 2 weeks to a presentation on the sun. He used the energy beads, which were a big hit. The kids loved them.

  3. Linda Reeves
    Linda Reeves says:

    Jim Stryder did a fantastic job teaching the students about the effects of UV light. He shared very important and useful information with students in an extremely interesting manner…using beads. Students were amazed at how small a sunspot was through the telescope when in reality it was as large as our Earth.

  4. Olivia
    Olivia says:

    I saw this and the bottom pic looks like the one that I picked out for my sciencce fair project but now I can’t find the exact project. Can you help me?


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