‘Fireworks’ in a jar

Posted on Jul 01 2016 in For Youth, Kids Projects

fireworks in a jarWhat you need:

  • 1 (12-oz.) jar
  • Water
  • 1 bowl
  • 3 T. oil
  • 2 bottles liquid food coloring
  • 1 fork

What to do:

  • Fill jar 3/4 of the way full with warm water. (Be careful! Jar may be hot.)
  • In a separate bowl, mix oil with a few drops of food coloring. (We used one blue and two neon pink drops for this photo.)
  • Stir oil mixture gently with fork.
  • Carefully pour the oil mixture into the jar.
  • Watch what appears to be fireworks display in the water! The food coloring will begin to separate from the oil, sink into the water and mix with other colors.

SCIENCE BEHIND THE PROJECT: Food coloring dissolves in water but not in oil. Oil is less dense than water so it floats at the top. The colored drops begin to sink because they are more dense than oil. Once they sink into the water, they start to dissolve. After approximately 30 seconds of fireworks, the colors will combine completely.

Stay safe around fireworks

Fireworks and Fourth of July can be a dangerous mix. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission,  7,000 people were treated for fireworks-related injuries in 2008. Kids and young adults sustained more than half of those injuries!

Consider attending your community’s organized fireworks show and watching the spectacular show from a safe distance. If your family’s plans include lighting fireworks at home, follow these tips:

  • Keep water handy in case of a fire.
  • For safety’s sake, glow sticks — not sparklers — may be a better choice for your younger siblings.
  • Make sure your parents or other adults are supervising the lighting of the fireworks.
  • Stand several feet away from lit fireworks. If a device does not go off, do not stand over it to investigate. Put it out with water and then throw it away.
  • Call 911 immediately if someone is injured from fireworks.

SOURCES: Consumer Product Safety Commission, Safe Kids Worldwide