This week we had fun with a little gummy bear science. This experiment is great for introducing little ones to physical science. Even better? It reintroduces parents to the sweet yummy snacks we used to love as kids. I’ve seen this experiment floating around Pinterest using water only, but we added vinegar and salt water to the experiment to see if different solutions produced different results. Here’s what we did.
What you’ll need:
- Gummy Bears
- 3 Plastic Cups
- This Experiment Worksheet
QUESTION: What physical changes will occur when a gummy bear is placed in water? Salt water? Vinegar?
Before beginning the experiment, have each student document their observations of the gummy bears on the experiment worksheet.
Step Two: Label each cup—water, salt water, and vinegar.
Step Three: Pour each liquid into assigned cups.
Step Four: Place a gummy bear into each cup.
Step Five: Wait a few hours (preferably 24) and document new changes.
Here’s what should happen:
1. The gummy bear sitting in water should get considerably larger. This is because the ingredients, water, gelatin, and sugar give the candy a sponge – like nature that soaks up the water. The gelatin prevents the gummy bear from disintegrating.
2. The gummy bear sitting in salt water should stay relatively true to size. This is because salt is a natural preservative.
3. The gummy bear sitting in vinegar should also get considerably larger. But unlike the gummy bear in water, this gummy bear broke apart as soon as we touched it. This reaction is due to the acidity of the vinegar, which breaks down the gelatin.
Have you tried this experiment? What other experiments should we try? Let us know down below!