Exploding Lunch Bag

While this activity might get a little messy, it’s a great chemistry experiment for kids that can be completed at home! Contain the mess by performing this activity outside or even in the kitchen sink.
You’ll need: 1 sandwich size ziploc bag, baking soda, vinegar, warm water, a measuring cup and a tissue
  1. First, pour 1/4 cup of warm water into the bag.
  2. Add 1/2 cup of vinegar to the water in the bag.
  3. Lay out the tissue on the table and pour 3 tablespoons of baking soda into the middle of the tissue.
  4. Wrap up the tissue around the baking soda to keep it contained in the tissue.
  5. For this next step, you’ll need to work a bit quickly! Zip the bag of water and vinegar partly closed, leaving enough room to play the packet of baking soda into the bag.
  6. Put the tissue with baking soda into the bag and quickly seal the bag.
  7. Place the bag in the kitchen sink or on the ground outside and step back. The bag will expand…and then POP!
What’s Happening:
A chemistry reaction occurs in this activity when the baking soda and vinegar slowly begin to mix in the bag. They create a gas – carbon dioxide! Because gasses need a lot of room, the carbon dioxide causes the bag to expand and pop!
Further the Learning:
If you try this experiment again, encourage your child to predict and test their theories. What happens if you use colder water? Does anything change with more or less baking soda? If you use a different size bag, does it take longer to pop?
Thanks to National Grid, our STEAM Education Partner, for sponsoring this activity.

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