Category Archives: Chemistry

Learning About Chemistry by Making Candy

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From the Duke University Research Blog comes this report describing how college students are learning chemistry by making candy. In the course, students explore the way that sugar turns into totally different foods depending on the way it’s cooked. The article also includes a few candy recipes used by the students that you can try at home.

Another Kid Scientist’s Google Doodle

We’re always excited to hear about other Kid Scientists out there sharing their interest in science and education.
science-google-doodleKaylie McFerrin from Wichita Falls, TX is one of the entrants in the Google for Doodle contest. The winner’s doodle will appear on Google’s home page. Kaylie wants to become a scientist so she can find a cure for her sister’s kidney cancer. There are lots of great careers for aspiring scientists that involve research, chemistry, and medicine. If you could do or be anything, what would it be?

President Obama to Host a National Science Fair at the White House

Here’s some news that got all of us at Kid Scientist excited:

“President Barack Obama said Monday he would convene a national science fair next year to honor young inventors with the same gusto that college and professional athletes celebrate their victories at the White House.

‘You know, if you win the NCAA championship, you come to the White House,’ said Obama, a sports fan as much as a science nerd. ‘Well, if you’re a young person and you produce the best experiment or design, the best hardware or software, you ought to be recognized for that achievement, too. Scientists and engineers ought to stand side by side with athletes and entertainers as role models.’

He said they would show young students how ‘cool science can be.’”

We agree!

All About Copper!

Last weekend we were looking at the steeple of a church. It was sort of a green mottled color. We found out it was made of copper. Pennies are made of copper too—why is the penny a brownish-reddish color and the church steeple is green?

The Statue of Liberty

The Statue of Liberty

When copper is exposed to oxygen in the air, there is a chemical reaction that turns it green. It takes years for the copper to turn from the coppery metallic color to the greenish-bluish color. Did you know that the Statue of Liberty is made of copper?

So why don’t pennies turn green? Well, being in people’s pockets, change purses, and in people’s hands, rather than exposed to the air like the church steeple helps. And pennies aren’t pure copper. Pennies are made from an alloy (mixture) of copper and zinc.

Copper is an element. Elements are the basic building blocks of… well, everything! Combined together, elements form chemical compounds. This video from our new favorite album “Here Comes Science” is about the periodic table, which lists all the elements: