Sunday, October 2, 2011

science...in the microwave?

As a hmmmschooling mom of two boys, I find my children take great delight in anything that explodes and/or makes a mess. So when I told the boys we were going to use our week to do science experiments in the microwave, they were ready to rock!


First up was the Great Soap Experiment. A little Irish Spring first...


And then some good ol' Ivory Soap for comparison.


Before we opened the microwave door to take a picture, the Ivory soap was twice the size shown here. Hmmmschooler Ooky actually ran out of the kitchen during this experiment because he was sure the Ivory Soap was going to bust the door right off the microwave. He did come back to discuss the why of the experiment though, and commented the kitchen suddenly smelled very clean. ;)

Having already put original Peeps in the microwave many times in our hmmmschooling career, we decided this time to make mini-marshmallow sculptures and "grow them" in the microwave. We talked about why they grew. Then we wrote our hypothesis about what would happen if we stuck a chocolate covered Peep in the microwave.


Would the chocolate melt away and then the marshmallow would grow, or would the marshmallow just pop out the side before the chocolate melted?


If you can't tell from the picture, you'll just have to do the experiment yourself. ;)

We tried M&Ms in the microwave, and my oldest son based his hypothesis on the story of why M&Ms were originally invented.

Turns out that whole melts in your mouth, not in your hand extends to and not after a minute in the microwave either.


Skittles, on the other hand, bubble up and do all sorts of funky things. After a minute, they look like this:


Um...snacktime, anyone?

The topper of the week, however, was to be the Twinkie experiment. You know...the one, where they say 45 seconds in a microwave will send frostingy filling and sponge cakeish blobs all over the inside of the microwave?

My boys could hardly contain themselves.

Ready, boys? Are you ready?

We did both a Cloud Cake (Little Debbie's version of a Twinkie) and an actual Twinkie for comparison.


45 seconds in a microwave, and the Cloud Cake looked like this...


...and smelled terrible.

But now...goodness sakes...the Twinkie!

(My kids were literally jumping up and down waiting for the mess to begin.)

Here you go!


Um...where's the explosion?

Bummer.

Actually, sneaky Hmmmschooling Mom did her research beforehand and couldn't find a single person on the internet that actually had this experiment work, even with modifications to the time, etc.

It turns out that microwave science not only taught us what certain things will do when microwaved, it also taught us that just because you see something stated on the internet or in a book, does not mean its always true!

The Hmmmschoolers were bummed out, but learned an important lesson. And to make up for the let-down, they're thinking a raw egg, still in the shell, heated in the microwave would be acceptable.

I will bring the clean-up supplies for that one. ;)

This post is linked up with Adventures in Mommydom's Science Sunday.

Science Sunday

9 comments:

  1. LOL

    Interesting experiments! Something we've never considered doing, although I'm sure my boys would be totally into it! Boys! LOL

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  2. You rock! All we ever tried to do was grow mold on a McDonalds burger...the beagle got to it before anything happened...and ate the paper too. So we did a "report" on the keen senses of hound dogs...not nearly as much fun. Maybe I'll try redeeming myself with a little microwave magic! :)

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  3. This is completely fantastic! I'm adding chocolate covered peeps to my grocery list right now :)

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  4. I didn't think any of those would turn out the way that your pictures showed they did! Weird, what you learn about your microwave, eh?

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  5. I have always meant to do the soap one, but never got around to it. My boys I bet would love all of these...although I bet there would be some fighting around the microwave that is over the oven....

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  6. I love it! I need to get some of that candy and try it

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  7. That is SO COOL! Other than making S'mores in the microwave (and of course watching the marshmallows get HUGE) we haven't tried anything else, and definitely not for science. I just never thought about it. What a great idea. My boys are going to love me! :D Thanks for posting this!! ~Dawn @ 5 Kids and a Dog

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  8. Science looks like fun at your house! :)

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  9. I'm loving science at your house!
    My question: did anyone try the Twinkie?

    LOL

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