The Amazing Growing Gummy Bear

4-6 year olds | half hour

Your kids may have experienced this in other formats, but this is your own personal home-made version.

What You'll Need

  • Gummy bear or other gelatine sweet
  • Glass or bowl
  • Digital camera or video camera

Instructions

  1. Fill your glass/bowl with water.
  2. Drop your gummy bear or other gelatine sweet into the water.
  3. Monitor how it grows by either filming it with a video camera or taking a picture every 30 seconds over the course of 15 minutes. When you rewind the footage or quickly flick back through the pictures you’ll see the amazing transformation of your gummy bear, who has grown and become less defined.
  4. If you leave your gummy bear over night in the water it should absorb a lot of water yet retain its shape, so you have a giant gummy bear. However, obviously it is not quite as firm, so you can discuss how the water has made the shape less stable by separating the particles.

 

Fact: Gelatine can hold up to five or ten times its own weight in water.

 

Extra activity: The same science goes into making jelly out of these sweets. Get your kids to pick some sweets, pour boiling water over them in a bowl (explain how the boiling water will disolve the gelatine rather than allowing it to simply absorb the water) stir until the sweets have dissolved, pour into a mould/cast and put in the fridge to set. You could even have gummy bear jelly!

Tags: science


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