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Friday, December 2, 2011

Day 73- Coca Cola Stomach

We have been studying famous American scientists and inventors this week. I thought it would be fun to end the week on a high note. I was going to gross my students out! It's science experiment time!

 First, we introduce new vocabulary: Dissolve, experiment, research.
 Dissolve- to make something fade away, make into smaller pieces. I made the reference of when you make Kool-Aid. It starts as a powder, but it dissolves in water. You can't see the powder any more!

Experiment- when you test out a hypotheses. My students love the word hypothesis. I asked them if they had seem the show Dinosaur Train, where the main character, Buddy, is always going around saying, "I have a hypothesis." Which means, he has an idea he wants to test. Well, one way to test a hypothesis is through an experiment.
Research- to study a topic. Our topic: how things dissolve in acidic substances.

After introducing vocabulary, we began talking about stomach acid. It's fascinating stuff, really. It takes only seconds for food to dissolve in one's stomach. Now, I didn't want to bring stomach acid to class. I want it to stay inside my body, thank-you-very-much. But I needed my students to have a point of reference.

Me- stomach acid is the stuff that helps you digest your food. It's so powerful, if you could put your finger in it, it would dissolve your skin down to the bone!
Students- Eewwww!!
Me- Yes, well I didn't bring any today. Instead, I brought another kind of strong acid.

That's right, Coca Cola. 
Student- Mrs. Delk, I drink that!
Me- Yes, I bet a lot of us drink that. Would you like to know how powerful an acid Coke is?
Students- YES!

The Power of Coca Cola: For a BIG list, check out this website!!
1. Can clean your toilet
2. Can get the bad smell out of the garbage disposal in the kitchen
3. Can clean out a clogged drain
4. Can dissolve a piece of raw meat
5. Remove grease stains from clothing and fabric

The list goes on and on! With every new use for Coke, my students let out a loud, "Eewww!" or "Ohh!"

For our uses, we pretended that Coke was stomach acid, and we wanted to see what type of food would dissolve the fastest: hard, chalky, or soft. We made a chart, and documented out findings.

We used a jawbreaker for the hard candy, smarties for the chalky, and a starburst for the soft.
You can see from the chart, most of my students thought that either the chalky or the soft would dissolve first. I poured Coke into 3 clear plastic coup, then dropped each candy in and had the kids describe what happened.
candy dropped to the bottom
the Coke bubbled
the candy floated at first, then sank after about a minute
Coke sparkled, the candy looked like it was on fire. (it was really neat looking. The candy was fizzing and my students made a connection to what they thought the Sun would look like- a flaming ball of gas!)

Candy sank
Glittering and bubbling

A picture of the jawbreaker cup:
You can faintly see a sugar film on the top of the Coke.

The smarties cup:

You can tell where the candy sank because of the sugar bubble on top!

The starburst cup:

Lots of sugar here! Big sugar bubble with lots of sugar film on top. The kids freaked out when they saw this cup! (just ignore the paper the cup is sitting on. I needed something for the background.)

Here is what we found:
1. The Smartie dissolved first! My students decided it was because it was small, and they noticed it fizzed the most at first, so it must dissolve fast!
2. The more sugar in the candy, the more the film on top of the cup. The starburst must be the most sugar filled since it made the most film.
3. My students will never look at Coke the same way again!

Just for kicks and grins- and another gross out moment- this is what the starburst cup looked like at the end of the day.

Who knew playing with your food could be this much fun?!

Our Daily Brain

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