Science Project Idea: Cloud Experiment

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    Those of you who follow me on social media know that, last month, I helped my twelve year-old son with his Science project for school.  Although I am an educator, Science has never been my strongest subject and I struggled to find a project idea that I could help him with while enjoying ourselves at the same time.  We eventually settled on analyzing food dyes in a variety of popular candies.

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    Next year, when my younger son enters fifth grade, I will have to help both of my boys with their Science projects and I know that it is going to be a lot of work.  As a result, I have already begun to experiment with some fun ideas that I have found online and I’m hoping to choose some of them next spring when it’s time for my boys to submit their finished projects to their school’s yearly Science Fair.

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    This experiment is to teach kids how rain happens. Clouds form when water droplets from the earth evaporate into the air. They are super light, but when more and more come together, they get heavier and heavier. Once the clouds become too heavy, the water droplets will fall back down to earth creating rain drops.

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Cloud Experiment

Materials-

Shaving cream
Water
Liquid food coloring
Clear jar

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Directions-

1. Fill your jar 3/4 way full with water (which will act as the sky)
2. Spray enough shaving cream on the water to cover the top of the water (which will act as the clouds)
3. Now drop a few drops of a few different colors of food coloring on top of the shaving cream (this will act as rain drops)
4. Once the clouds become too heavy, the rain will start to fall (it might take a couples minutes, just keep a close eye)

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    Variations of this experiment are geared towards children in grades three to five.  It’s a great hands-on activity to illustrate to kids how clouds form.  Some follow-up activities might include introducing them to the different types of clouds that they can find in the sky.  I can’t wait to try this with my son next school year!

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Let’s Discuss:  What Science Project ideas have you helped your own children bring to life?

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Comments

  1. Robin (Masshole Mommy) says:

    That is so cool! My two love doing science experiments at home. Thanks for the idea.

  2. This is definitely a great and easy idea for a science project. Describing and showing how rain forms and ultimately falls is a good one. It would also be great to just keep little ones entertained for hours as they watch the rain fall from the clouds.

  3. OMGosh, what a neat idea. I love this. I can’t wait to show this to Sophie and Ben. They are always looking for cool projects to do. Thanks!

  4. I love this, what a fun little project! I can see my boys enjoying this so we are going to have to try it out for school.

  5. Such a cool experiment. Definitely something to try over some of the boring summer moments!

  6. This is a great experiment that we haven’t yet done. I love science experiments. They are great for hands on learning with kids. They can be a lot of fun for parents too. In our old house we had a massive yard with wide open space and a big treehouse climber swing set. We spent one entire summer blowing things up. We did an explosive experiment each week. It was a blast. Sorry couldn’t resist the pun!! I have no problem working with the kids to build fun science experiments – it’s when they get into the math stuff lately that I have issue. Some of their math is so challenging. I can’t even break it down to explain that anymore. Anyways luckily husband has a lot of patience for math.

  7. That’s very cool and super easy to do. Perfect for a budding young scientist!

  8. My daughter is just a first grader and we’re still loving making bubbles and trying to keep them from popping. This experiment is one that I know she’d love though. She loves weather and looking at the clouds. Awesome!

  9. I love this demonstration. As an elementary teacher and principal, I have seen more science projects to last me a lifetime! My favorite was a comparison of light dog foods. The experiment spanned six months, the dog was their overweight pooch, and they experimented with three different foods. Keeping exercise the same, they tracked the amount of weight lost. The photos of the dog were so cute.

  10. This is such a great experiment. I was out of town for work the week before my daughter’s first science experiment and since my husband is better at science than I am, he said he would do it with her. He had her do a project on electromagnetic force fields and it was a disaster. I got home from my trip at 9pm the night before her science fair project was due to find her crying. She had no idea what my husband was talking about. This is definitely a much better project idea! I may have to do this with my twins in the next few weeks!

  11. This looks like a really cool science experiment. I loved doing things like this with the kids when they were homeschooled.

  12. What a cool idea!! I posted the other day that I was so bad at Science when I was younger so it’s cool to see these neat Science projects. Great post!

  13. What a fun science experiment to do with the kids!! I had no idea that you could do this to show how clouds work.

  14. Now that’s pretty neat! Gonna share with my mom friends – the kiddos are sure to love!

  15. Megan McCoig says:

    This looks so cool. I love the effect it makes in the water!’

  16. This sounds like a fun little project! This would be perfect for today. It has been super rainy!

  17. This is a fun, simple project! Being a former educator I can see where this would be awesome to do in the classroom, especially since the kids can do it themselves, there is plenty to observe, and it is cheap!

  18. What an absolutely awesome experiment! I quite fancy doing it myself I have to admit.

  19. Rachelle says:

    My daughter would love this! Perfect activity for summer break!

  20. This is pretty amazing. I think my kids would have such an incredible time with this, I will have to plan to do it with them!

  21. You might not be a scientist but you clearly have a skill for craft. I think you did a great job and science experiments are always fun.

  22. What a fabulous idea and such good visual effects. Wish I was as good with science. Great job.

  23. Ann Bacciaglia says:

    This is a great science experiment idea. My kids love to do experiments on the weekends.

  24. My kiddos would absolutely love to try this out! We are going to do this, this weekend!

  25. This is a cool experiment and I can’t wait to try it with the Foodie Kids. Our most recent science fun included a DNA extraction experiment. It was very interesting. 🙂

  26. How cool is this! I am not big on the science experiments because I don’t like the cleanup, but this one looks like something my kids would really enjoy!

  27. I think this was a clever idea.
    It is so nice to hear you try so hard to help your son with science.
    I think the whole STEM thing is a strong future (and present) education wave.

  28. What a great project. That’s so lovely of you to help your kiddos, hope they appreciate you.

  29. My kids are really into performing science experiments. We have done a couple at home as well, I definitely want to encourage that inquisitive nature in them.

  30. Love this! What a great way to explain and show how rain and clouds work. It should be integrated into classrooms. 😀

  31. My 11yr old is autistic but he loves experiments and this is totally something the would love to do. It is so easy to do as well. I think we might be doing this on the weekend.

  32. What a fun idea. My kids also love to learn about how things work!

  33. Looks like a great science experiment! And mostly importantly everyone had fun. We love science in our house and we always do a ton of experiment. Let’s see… the last series of experiments we did was on acoustics and echolocation. It was a lot of fun!

  34. So cool. I remember when I used to help my children with their science experiments. I ts was so much fun, I can’t believe its been years. Thanks for bringing back fun memories.

  35. My goodness, this is super cool. A wonderful science project which will be so helpful for kids to learn something new. I would love to try this one with my kids over the weekend & they are going to be excited.

  36. I’m not in school anymore and don’t have kids but I really want to try this!

  37. I love how unique this is! I am currently pregnant with #1, so I have a long time to think about my first science experiment, but this one looks so much more fun than the ones I did in school.

  38. Ron Leyba says:

    Cool experiment indeed. I will let my daughter know about this. Amazing.

  39. CourtneyLynne says:

    Ooooo this looks like a super fun project!!! I will have to try it with my daughter 😉

  40. Oh wow – I guess I should have guessed shaving cream would “change” -but I love how it swirled.

  41. You are serious as a heartattack…LOL….you deserve your name toughcookiemom…fabulous

  42. Omg how fun is this experiment?!?! I have a little girl who would get a total kick Out of this! So neat!

  43. This looks like such a cool experiment. I should start doing things like with my daughter.

  44. We really haven’t gotten too many Science projects at home, it’s done in school. But I will keep this as an idea for when it’s time.

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