Mmmm, gummy bears. Like you really need an excuse to buy gummy bears, but in case you do…you can use these delicious treat as a quick (and fun!) science experiment.
These experiments are meant for younger kids, but I bet it would be a cinch to get your olders involved. Hello! Candy!
#1 : Growing Gummy Bears
We gathered every liquid we could think of and tested out whether or not a gummy bear would expand, and hold its shape, when placed in that liquid overnight.
- 10 different liquids: plain water, salt water, milk, baking soda water, vinegar, sugar water, apple juice, Pepsi, orange juice, and Sprite.
- Ice cube tray
- Gummy Bear Tracker (free download)
- Various flavors of gummy bears. Oriental Trading has (BY FAR!) the best tasting gummy bears we have ever had in our lives. Not exaggerating here. (Disclaimer: Oriental Trading sent me several flavors of gummy bears for this post. I was not compensated.) You can buy them in huge 5 lb packages (approx. 565 gummies) for $15.99.
For this experiment, we used raspberry gummy bears (blue), wild cherry gummy bears (red), green apple gummy bears (green), and grape gummy bears (purple).
- Fill each ice cube tray section with a different liquid. Make sure you note which liquids are where so you don’t get them mixed up. We had 10 liquids, so we used 10 sections and 10 gummy bears.
- Plop a gummy bear in each section.
- Store in a cool place. You don’t want the liquid to get too hot or else the gummy bears will lose their shapes faster.
- Check them in a few hours and then check them again the next day.
- Take each one out and place it on the Gummy Bear Tracker next to an original sized gummy bear.
The gummy bears grew the most in apple juice, plain water and Sprite.
#2 : Gummy Bear Genetics
This experiment will teach kids how ancestry and ethnicity is passed down through the family.
Want to do a more complicated version of this?
- A sharp knife
- Various flavors of gummy bears
- A printed family tree chart or you can just draw boxes and lines to create your own
Use your own ancestry or ethnicity to personalize your final gummy bear. The photo above represents a gummy who is 25% wild cherry, 25% raspberry, 25% green apple, and 25% grape. His father is half wild cherry and half green apple and his mother is half raspberry and half grape.
*Disclosure: this post may contain affiliate links.