Try this fun dancing raisins experiment! You only need raisins, baking soda, water and vinegar! Kids will love making the raisins dance with science!
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Dancing Raisins Science Experiment
In this experiment, you’ll use science to make the raisins dance! You can even do this same experiment with corn.
- Baking Soda
- Clear vase or Mason Jar
What is the Science?
You see the bubbling and foaming in the jar, but what is causing this reaction?
The baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) is a base while the vinegar (acetic acid) is an acid and what you are seeing is an acid/base reaction. Initially, the reaction makes carbonic acid which is unstable and breaks down into carbon dioxide (CO2) and water which is what creates all of the fizzing and bubbles as the gas leaves the water.
Why Do the Raisins Dance?
As the bubbles are created, the carbon dioxide bubbles attach to the raisins and bring the raisins to the surface of the water. The bubbles pop when they reach the surface and then the raisins sink back down to the bottom of the jar. Once on the bottom they collect more carbon dioxide bubbles and the process starts again. This is what makes it look like the raisins are “dancing”.
Watch the Video Tutorial Here!
How to do a Dancing Raisins Experiment
1. Add 1/4 cup of raisins to a jar.
If your jar is smaller, you can use less raisins.
Note – we recommend washing your raisins first. Otherwise they may make the water cloudy. Wash until the water is clear.
2. Add in 1 tablespoon of baking soda.
Make sure the baking soda is spread evenly across all of the raisins.
3. Add in water to fill the jar about 3/4 of the way full.
4. Mix the baking soda in the water until dissolved.
5. Add in 1/4 cup of vinegar.
The vinegar and baking soda reaction will happen immediately. This may cause some of the water mixture to overflow from your jar, so protect your surface. It’s best if you can place the jar in a tray in case this happens.
If it overflows, the water mixture will settle and become clear. Once clear, you will be able to start watching the raisins “dance”. The dancing should continue for at least a few minutes.
Now you can watch the raisins dance!
The vinegar and baking soda reaction will cause bubbles that will carry the raisins to the surface of the water. As the bubbles pop, the raisins will drop back down and the process will continue, making it look like they are dancing!
See more fun science experiments here!