Kids Chemistry

Participants were fascinated by a demonstration of the modified Belousov- Zhabotinsky oscillating reaction. Several reagents were mixed together, generating a solution that turned blue, then violet, then red. The solution then returned to its initial blue hue. The cycle goes on for at least 10 minutes.

IndigoKids at the Toronto Eaton Centre was the place to be Oct. 19 for a little bit of chemistry magic to celebrate National Chemistry Week. The hands-on activities, sponsored by the Chemical Institute of Canada (CIC), included a demonstration of fruit batteries, where galvanized nails, copper braces and alligator clips reacted with the acid in lemons and potatoes to turn on a LED light. Kids also made “magic” paper. First they coated watercolour paper with red cabbage juice then wrote on it with Q-tips dipped in either vinegar, baking soda, water or hydrogen peroxide, thus creating different coloured writing. Chemistry demonstrations included the mixing of barium hydroxide with ammonium salt to create a highly endothermic, or energy-absorbing, reaction. About 30 youngsters participated in the experiments. Event organizers included Pueblo Science and the CIC Toronto Local Section.