Have a question? My team and I are happy to hear your questions and get you answers! When you type a question, it shows up not only on that experiment but also here so you can easily find your answer. You'll find question boxes at the bottom of every experiment in the program.

Question: from renatavergilis about the Making Litmus Solution and Paper experiment :

Thank you so much! :) Nate (8)

Answer:  Rusty Balloon

The chloride in the salt combines with the metal to rust it. You should be dumping out the water, but try it both ways to see if it makes a difference in your results!

Answer:  Making Litmus Solution and Paper

Yes, ethyl will work. Denatured alcohol is ethyl with a few additives.

Question: from renatavergilis about the Making Litmus Solution and Paper experiment :

Will ethyl or isopropyl alcohol work? Thanks! Nate(8)

Question: from roboshort about the Rusty Balloon experiment :

Also, How come we added salt? Does it aid the corrosion of the steel?

Question: from roboshort about the Rusty Balloon experiment :

Hi there! In the video you had us soak the steel wool in water and then dump out the liquid, leaving the steel wool inside the bottle, capped with a balloon. In the written instructions, however, you didn't mention whether or not we should discard the liquids. We are trying the video method of dumping the liquids out. Which method should we have followed? or does it matter?

Answer:  Ball Bounce

Hmmm... what do YOU think? And then try it! (And then let me know what you figure out - what happened, and why?)

Answer:  TaaDaaaaa!!!

A tomato sounds fun ... and messy! Maybe try it outside first?

Question: from violet639 about the Ball Bounce experiment :

can the force of throwing it down also affect the bouncing part?

Question: from violet639 about the Ball Bounce experiment :

I loved this experiment! I tried it with a small yellow ball. As I listened to the lesson, I kept dropping the ball on the table. It didn't bounce high because it wasn't high enough. When I tried it over the floor, it bounced a little higher!

Question: from violet639 about the TaaDaaaaa!!! experiment :

Could you use a tomato

Question: from violet639 about the TaaDaaaaa!!! experiment :

Cool experiment

Answer:  Bobsleds

It means to adjust and notice what's going on and adjusting again.

Answer:  Bobsleds


Question: from violet639 about the Simple Pulley Experiments experiment :

Can you use marbles in one cup in pennies in the other?

Question: from violet639 about the Bobsleds experiment :

What does tweeking mean??

Question: from violet639 about the Bobsleds experiment :

Could u use an empty toilet paper tube as well?

Question: from violet639 about the Bobsleds experiment :

The Bobsled word does sound a little funny.

Question: from violet639 about the Magnetic Sensors experiment :

That's a big circle!

Answer:  Planetarium and Star Show

You are correct that sound doesn't travel through space. Even if they did, the sun's vibrations are usually at a frequency that is much to low to be heard by human ears. Scientists measure the waves, translate them into motion (aka sound) waves, then speed them to a frequency where we can hear them. You can learn more about this here: http://www.sciencelearningspace.com/2013/09/song-of-the-sun/

Answer:  Newton's First Law of Motion

Yes, all of the sections in the High School physics section have these for you to download. Enjoy!

Question: from jenjar2001 about the Newton's First Law of Motion experiment :

I really like the workbook and want one for all the other sections too please:)

Question: from thegoffclub about the Planetarium and Star Show experiment :

How do we hear the song of the stars (sun) with our human ears when sound cannot be heard in space?

Answer:  Yeast, Mold, and More!

Oh wow - that's exciting! Sounds like you learned something too! :) I recall doing a similar thing with my pond water sample I was saving for weeks in the trunk of my car for a water purification class I was teaching. When I finally uncorked it, the entire school (except our class of course) was forced to evacuate because it was so strong!

Question: from Shannon Acevedo about the Yeast, Mold, and More! experiment :

So the written instructions say not to put the lid on tightly when growing the protozoa with the yeast and grass in the jar. Well, we did. Oh my goodness! Will we ever get that smell from our nasal passages???? About as stinky a smell I've ever smelled.

Answer:  Terraqua Column: How does water affect land and animals?

So the water can travel ("wick") between the two places. If you really want to be a scientist about it, you can try all sorts of materials (nylon, yarn, twine, etc) and see which works best.

Question: from julienl_g about the Terraqua Column: How does water affect land and animals? experiment :

why cotton string?

Question: from littlelisa94 about the Iodine Clock reaction experiment :

My KI is in crystal form. What concentration solution should I make for this experiment.

Question: from kkruid about the How to Avoid the Dentist experiment :

cool thanks for the information.

Answer:  Making Sandstone

Any craft store should have it! Try your local Target or Walmart as well.

Question: from renatavergilis about the Ammonia Experiments experiment :

Thanks a lot! The link really helped. And now I know what (II) and (III) mean.:) Nate (8)

Question: from julienl_g about the Making Sandstone experiment :

Where can you get Plaster of Paris?

Answer:  Detecting Plaque

Nope - it just stays there for a bit while you inspect your teeth for places you really need to brush better!

Answer:  How to Avoid the Dentist

They can if it's significantly stressful for the patient to have a root canal treatment. It's not without risk, so they prefer not to unless the benefits far outweigh the risk.

Answer:  Ammonia Experiments

Oh dear. It looks like they have updated what's included in the kit again. So sorry about that! It's frustrating when manufacturers change what they include, especially when you count on them being consistent! You can find ammoumium chloride here inexpensively: https://www.homesciencetools.com/product/ammonium-chloride-30-g/ but I would also look over the chemistry unit you're working on to see what else you'd like to do and then add that to your order while you're at it. To answer your other question, many elements and compounds can exist in more than one chemical form (called its "oxidation state") and the (II) or (III) will signify which oxidation state it's on. For example, the two most common forms of iron (Fe) are "Fe(II)" where the iron ion shares two of its electrons, and "Fe(III)" where the iron ion shares three electrons.

Question: from kkruid about the Detecting Plaque experiment :

Hi Aurora its Kaden Kruid I was just wondering what's in the tablets that makes the dye stick to your teeth?

Question: from kkruid about the How to Avoid the Dentist experiment :

Hi Aurora its Kaden Kruid, I sure hope that I never have to get a root canal, but do you know why they don't just put people under with the knock out gas?

Question: from renatavergilis about the Ammonia Experiments experiment :

I got the Chem C1000 and I don't seem to have ammonium chloride; I only have ammonium iron (III) sulfate (whatever the "(III)" means). Is it only in the Chem C3000?

Answer:  Shopping List for Unit 17

I am not sure if you are referring to how to prep the agar itself or the dish, so here is prep instructions for both: Since agar is used to grow bacteria, all you have to do is warm it until it melts (you can place it in a hot water bath or microwave it on high for 30 seconds) and then fill up your petri dish. If it's dehydrated, then dissolve 1 teaspoon agar with 1/4 - 1/2 cup water and bring it to a boil slowly to re-hydrate. For the dish, you want to just cover the bottom and let it stand until the agar is firm. Store it upside down in the fridge until you're ready to use it. When you're ready to use it, pull it out and use a sterile q-tip to take a bacteria sample (like from the inside of your cheek) and gently rub it in a couple of zig-zag strokes over the agar and then stick the lid on and put it in a warm, damp area for a couple of days. You can peek in every day to see how it's growing and record your information in your science journal. When you're done, get a grown up to put a tablespoon of bleach in with the bacteria culture, seal it up in a plastic bag and throw it in the trash.

Question: from busto0102 about the Shopping List for Unit 17 experiment :

How do I prepare the Petri dish using agar powder?

Question: from renatavergilis about the Making Litmus Solution and Paper experiment :

Thanks a lot! :) Nate (8)

Answer:  Making Litmus Solution and Paper

At the pharmacy or hardware store (look near the paint section).

Question: from renatavergilis about the Making Litmus Solution and Paper experiment :

Where can I get denatured alcohol? Thanks! Nate

Answer:  Solar Energy Project

Thanks for asking! We are in the process of updating all those links (there are quite a few) but in the meantime, I've put together a master shopping list sheet that has all the Radio Shack numbers updated to Jameco.com which you can review here: http://www.sciencelearningspace.com/2016/08/radio-shack-component-replacements/

Answer:  Science Teleclass: Light & Lasers & Holograms

It will be close! There is a template for what you need on the worksheet page here: http://www.sciencelearningspace.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Light-Lasers-Holograms-2017-TC.pdf It doesn't have to be exactly the same size. A little smaller is ok.

Question: from jen5253 about the Solar Energy Project experiment :

The Radioshack part numbers are no longer working on the Radioshack site, and the parts do not come up when using the search feature. Do you have other recommendations for the parts?

Question: from saturn about the TaaDaaaaa!!! experiment :

So when I tried the experiment with a ball (I actually used a round is round is egg) ( that looked like a soccer ball ⚽️ ) I also used a plastic cup and a pie pan and a toilet paper roll work every time I tried it! So I was ready for the egg, we live on a farm and have chickens and ducks ( and other animals ( ) lol ) I used a duck egg ( bc they have harder shells in case I missed) it was bigger then the roll smaller than the cup. I added water and hit the pan sending the roll & pan flying the egg landed inside the cup and splattered water lol So fun!!!!!! Thanks again lol, Faith

Question: from saturn about the TaaDaaaaa!!! experiment :

I got it every time and I am going to try a egg now! Thanks, Faith

Question: from mbright14 about the Science Teleclass: Light & Lasers & Holograms experiment :

How large does the clear plastic film need to be? I have a pasta box with a plastic film circle that is about 2 inches in diameter. Will this work? Or do I need to find something bigger?

Answer:  What a Drag!

Hi there, When you look at the top edge of a surface of something, like the edge of a knife, while normally it looks straight and flat, when you look up close like under a microscope, you'll ind find it's not flat but jagged. Not everything that looks flat are really flat. Make sense so far? Now some pieces of metal are really actually flat under a microscope because they have been so carefully machined. The trick is to know that atoms are constantly in motion (even in solids), and so the atoms on the very top surface edge are constantly wriggling and moving, and sometimes they break free and float freely. When this happens between two super-smooth flat pieces of material, the atoms can intermingle and eventually will form a bridge between the two and stick together.

Question: from L.C. about the What a Drag! experiment :

in the experiment stick and slip I was wondering about what you said about 1:55 minuets into the video about two smooth pieces of metal. I don't understand why they would "weld" together.

Answer:  Special Science Teleclass: Chemistry & Chemical Engineering

The answer key is on the very last page of the PDF file. Enjoy!

Answer:  Roller Coaster Physics

Sorry about that! These are videos that kids have submitted to us and we've posted in our Kids Only section, and it seems that since we've updated our players, their videos are not showing any longer - we are working to fix it. The original experiment is here: http://www.sciencelearningspace.com/2009/11/3162/

Question: from lewiskathryn4 about the Special Science Teleclass: Chemistry & Chemical Engineering experiment :

Aurora, do you have an answer sheet for the worksheet? We missed a few answers. Thank you.

Question: from Hcurly2 about the Roller Coaster Physics experiment :

the video is not there!!!!!!! it just a white blank space

Question: from julienl_g about the Grasshopper Dissection experiment :


Answer:  Simple Hovercraft

Yes that's right! Really any balloon will work. You just want one large enough so that it will hold enough air for the experiment.

Question: from saturn about the Simple Hovercraft experiment :

Wait is a “7-9” balloon a normal balloon ( like ones bought for party’s) ?

Question: from fruityveggiegirl about the Hydraulic Pneumatic Earth Mover experiment :

This is so cool. Hope to make it soon.You could even add a motor to make the wheels move on it's own as well as arm control. I want to make it to enter into the LA County Fair (at least one of these vehicles)

Question: from Kimberly about the A Weighty Issue experiment :

Our crew loves your program. Science is their favorite subject now. They use science jargon all the time too. Instead of, "Pass me the sucky thingy" they say, the eye dropper" and they name the parts of a microscope, osmosis....goodness the list goes on and on. In addition Aurora has such a happy, calm teaching style that she helps me, too. She is an excellent reminder to have fun with learning and relax, make a mistake and try again. Thanks so much for all you do! Congrats on Cathy Duffy putting you all on her "best" list! She is tough to please and you all passed with flying colors. Kimberly

Answer:  A Weighty Issue

Not quite. The atmosphere is what slows things down if they are a different size/shape. For example, if you take two pieces of paper and crumple one into a tight ball... they both weight the same, right? What happens when you drop both from the same height at exactly the same time? Now try dropping a golf ball and a ping pong ball. These both are about the same size and shape, only the golf ball is heavier. What happens when you drop both from the same height at exactly the same time? If you repeat this experiment on a moon or planet without an atmosphere, like the moon, in both cases, the objects would hit the ground at the same time. That's what the hammer and feather experiment were showing. Gravity pulls on all objects equally, it just gets more complicated when an atmosphere (a "sea of air") is also involved because it affects how things fall as well.

Question: from saturn about the A Weighty Issue experiment :

So if you drop 2 things on earth & in space they are going to hit at the same time ( the 2 things ) no matter if you are on the earth or on the moon? Thanks

Answer:  New Biology Dissection Videos

There really isn’t a lot of memorization in the program, because that’s not what science is. Science is all about asking questions and getting back answers. For things like the periodic table, kids will become familiar with what it is and how to use it rather than memorizing which letters go where (which is rather meaningless!) because they’re doing experiments that really make sense of it. They will better understand why the elements are arranged in certain ways because they are experiencing it for themselves, like how inert gases are grouped at one end of the table, and how hydrogen is really different and should be in its own group all by itself (which is usually isn't indicated that way on typical periodic charts), or how the alkali metals (Li, Na, K, Rb, Cs...) are increasingly reactive with water as you move further down the table. The science laws they will discover and also will make sense (For example, how higher pressure always pushes when they do their experiments in flight and aerodynamics, because if it were otherwise, planes couldn’t get off the ground.) It’s based on observation, asking questions, and learning how to think. Hope this helps! Aurora

Question: from Laura about the New Biology Dissection Videos experiment :

As a homeschooling mom, I am wondering what science facts I should be having our girls memorize. Any suggestions? Should they be memorizing the periodic table, for example? Or other laws of science? Does the program provide any guidance for suggested facts to learn and maintain?

Answer:  Fast Ferry

Thanks so much for your kind words, Amber! Please just let us know if we can help with questions. Happy experimenting!

Answer:  Fast Ferry

Thanks for sharing this, Mike! She did a great job on the ferry.

Answer:  Building Bridges

Great work, Susanna!

Question: from Amber about the Fast Ferry experiment :

Thank you! I was able to login without problem. My older three kids (11, 9, and 7 yrs) and I watched your free class today and loved it! My 9 year old son is especially excited to try all the experiments that include a motor. I was thrilled to learn about the curriculum conversion chart. We have used Apologia for several years and intend to continue in the program. Thank you for making it easy for me to combine the two! I really appreciate having projects my kiddos can do “on their own” while I care for the toddler and baby. Keep up the good work! And thank you for making real science accessible, understandable, and FUN! A mama with one less thing on her plate, Amber

Answer:  Science for Teens

You can study mechanical engineering - this is the most versatile of all engineering majors because you study some of everything (and it's way easier to find a job, because mechanicals can do most all other engineering jobs). Then you continue on to master in the area that really interests you the most, like aerospace or chemical engineering. Go to a school that will give you the best experience - Cal Poly was fantastic because it was affordable, high-level and competitive in industry, and also had a lot of other things to do besides just engineering. I would watch a couple of inspirational videos (Tony Robbins has a number of these online like here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F__IrFQzmb4) about goal-setting so you can get clear on exactly what it is you want to do and then make yourself a flight plan to get you there. Don't forget that airplanes are off-course 90% of the time, so you'll want to also make sure you know what you are getting as you work toward your goal and make sure you're still headed in the right direction. For example, playing video games and watching TV every day might be fun, but kids spend an average of 7-8 hours a day in front of an entertainment screen and at the end of the year, that's 3000 hours they could have spent on something else... like learning everything they can about how to be the next mission control expert. An hour or two a couple times a week might be more in alignment with where you want to go and what you want to do with your life. One of the reasons I was so successful early in life is because I was so focused (almost too focused at times - I would go back and put more fun in there now and then!) and I was very clear on where I wanted to go and what I wanted to do... and guess what? I achieved all my goals I had set out in my teens by the time I was 25. Then I had to set new ones. :) Long story short - people aren't born with ability to do stuff ("Wow! She's an amazing singer! I'll bet she was just born with that talent...", and it's rarely the case of how smart you are or how rich you are or how lucky you are... it's how clear you are about where you want to go and how hard you work at it with elegance and intelligence. Does that help?

Question: from Ella about the Science for Teens experiment :

How do I become a NASA scientist?

Question: from Mike about the Fast Ferry experiment :

My daughter enjoyed your (class) today and wanted me to send you a photo of her two bottle fast ferry. Thanks for your work!

Question: from Holly about the Building Bridges experiment :

My daughter, Susanna, wanted to show you the bridge she built after watching your science video :).

Answer:  Echinoderms

That's a sea urchin :)

Question: from saturn about the Forever Falling experiment :

That sounds fun!

Question: from julienl_g about the Echinoderms experiment :

what was the long spiny thing in the first video?

Question: from saturn about the Flying Paper Clip experiment :

I made a chain of six paper clips and had 2 of the same magnets as you did needed a 2nd person and the chain floated in the air ( it tolk many tries because the magnets wanted to brake the chain ) but it was fun now in my & your experiment how is it related to gravity? Thanks

Answer:  Microwhat?

What are you looking for specifically?

Question: from saturn about the Building Bridges experiment :

The cups don’t matter if there different then yours do they? ( like the red paper ones you can by at stores like walmart ) Thanks a lot!!!!

Question: from saturn about the Microwhat? experiment :

Were do you get these again?

Answer:  Geology Field Trip

It could be calcite. Are you able to check it for fluorescence? Calcite is commonly fluorescent.

Question: from saturn about the Geology Field Trip experiment :

Aurora, in the last comment the clam shell was found in the Harz mountains in Germany ~ Andie

Question: from saturn about the Geology Field Trip experiment :

Hi Aurora, it's Andie. Someone my dad works with brought me a fossilized clam shell that is covered in a rock. It has a hardness of about 3 and is a grey color. Do you have any idea what it could be?

Answer:  Quick 'n' Easy DC Motor

Is your battery fresh? If so, I would recommend trying a different screw to see if that makes a difference. Make sure you've got good metal conductivity throughout the experiment. You shouldn't have to do much except barely brush the surface with a few strands of the wire to set it spinning. Let me know how it goes!

Question: from mbright14 about the Quick 'n' Easy DC Motor experiment :

Actually, our magnet is nickel plated. But it's the magnet that pops up when I click on your link, so I assume it should work. We have the battery poles the proper way, positive end contacting the screw. Any ideas as to why ours doesn't spin?

Question: from mbright14 about the Quick 'n' Easy DC Motor experiment :

And does it matter if our screw head is a little bit fatter?

Question: from mbright14 about the Quick 'n' Easy DC Motor experiment :

Will a silver plated magnet work? Trying to figure out why it's not working. :)

Answer:  Colored Flowers

Try trimming the stems at an angle prior to putting the flowers in colored water.

Question: from anita_foster about the Osmosis in Potatoes & Beans experiment :

<<<<<<<<<<<the salt water potato i meant

Question: from anita_foster about the Osmosis in Potatoes & Beans experiment :

When i did this for fifteen minutes the potato grew but the second time it was smaller then when I first cut it That’s a bit confusing Lol Thsnks Ps: this is my last day of science!

Question: from anita_foster about the Colored Flowers experiment :

So I tried a carnation flower that had sparkles on it bc that was the only tipe We had but it did not work so we thought that it might have been the sparkles so we tried daisies ( more than 1 ) but the did not work and they died =( O the carnation did not die! It just stayed white :( then I thought possibly the daisies were the problem but I went to my Grandmas house and somebody died daisies for her a hole bunch and different colors! Why did mine not work ( daisies did not have sparkles) Thanks =P :P ;P lol

Answer:  Cell Walls of Cotton

Based on how full the glass was, you can form an estimate how many cotton balls it would have taken to fill the entire thing. How many would you estimate?

Answer:  Salt and Sugar Crystals

Vinegar is a weak acid, which helps the salt crystals to form.

Question: from littlelisa94 about the Salt and Sugar Crystals experiment :

What does the vinegar do in the solution?

Question: from anita_foster about the Cell Walls of Cotton experiment :

I got 18 in because I ran out of cotton balls

Answer:  Wireless FM Transmitter (the 'Bug')

You need solder from an electronics supply store. Home depot’s is probably too large because it’s more for larger projects. Find one in Jameco (www.jameco.com) that is 0.8 to 1.2 mm rosin core solder, or in the electronics section of a store (Home Depot may or may not have it, I am not sure). You cannot use acid core solder, plumber’s solder, or solid solder.

Answer:  Calibrated Spectrometer

Yes, that's perfect. Just be sure to calibrate precisely and it will work well for you.

Question: from katbro3649 about the Wireless FM Transmitter (the 'Bug') experiment :

We need to order more solder wire, since we used all that was included with the kit. We apparently purchased the wrong kind from Home Depot, as it's a tad thicker, or not as flexible to use. Do you have a link where we can order the same size wire that was included in the tube? Is it available only online, or can it be found in any local stores? Thanks!

Question: from littlelisa94 about the Calibrated Spectrometer experiment :

Can this work with a double-axis diffraction grating? Are any changes in the construction needed?

Answer:  Catapults

Here's the link to that experiment for you: http://www.sciencelearningspace.com/2010/05/marshmallow-roaster/

Answer:  Football Ice Cream

You should be able to access it at this link once you've logged in: http://sciencelearningspace.com/standardcontent/docs/ecamp-Football-Ice-Cream.pdf Does that work?