Are you bored with science textbooks and printables?
We love hands-on learning in our house.
This book is a great addition to our homeschool library!
The Electric Pickle: 50 Experiments from the Periodic Table, from Aluminum to Zinc By Joey Green (Chicago Review Press; October 1, 2017)
Our Review of The Electric Pickle:
Who doesn’t want to play with fire?
My husband is a chemist, so he felt really comfortable with the experiments. I don’t think I would want to play with fire without safety gear and supervision. We all loved learning about chemistry, physics, and the elements with the fun and mostly easy experiments.
The kids are 7, 10, 11, and 17. We’re all very into science and experiential learning.
We love the simplicity and application of the book with an experiment and learning about the element and its uses.
We went to the hardware store to gather supplies. Some items are a little harder to find than others and some we need to order online, but it’s mostly just household stuff.
We completed the following experiments:
- Hydrogen: “Exploding Hydrogen Bubbles”
We took it a step farther and just blew up a balloon instead of bubbles. I don’t recommend trying this at home!
- Lithium: “Horrible Hot Dog” – Insert a lithium battery into an uncooked hot dog and watch it sizzle and bubble.
- Boron: “Green Tornado Fire” – Use boric acid and antifreeze to create a green glowing flame.
- Nitrogen: “Homemade Ping Pong Ball Smoke Bomb”We didn’t get much smoke with this experiment.
- Oxygen: “Freaky Soap Soufflé” – Microwave a regular bar of soap to turn it into a large, lava-like cloud formation
- Oxygen: “Cornstarch Powered Flamerthrower”
The neighbors asked us about this one!
- Sodium: “Baffling Money Burn” but we just did it with a piece of paper!
- Iron: “Bewildering Burning Steel”
- Zinc: “Shocking Silver Pennies”
We actually did a similar experiment at our local science museum with nickels:
It’s a strange and fascinating DIY guide for the chemistry-curious, featuring an activity for every single element of the periodic table. Why does a pickle light up when you plug it into a wall socket? Can iron burn? Are Cheerios magnetic? Explore these strange questions and more in The Electric Pickle, an indispensible collection of 50 madcap experiments based on the periodic table. Each project demonstrates an element’s unique properties using easy-to-follow instructions.
- Hexed Helium Balloon
- Black Light Jell-O
- Totally Tricky Thermometer
- Ludicrous Lead-Pencil Lightbulb
- Sodium: “Electric Pickle” – Conduct electricity through a pickle to watch it glow bright yellow
Projects range from relatively quick with very few simple ingredients to more exciting and complex experiments that lead to booming or glowing results.
The Electric Pickle is also sprinkled with mind-bending scientific facts and entertaining sidebars about historic experiments and less common, often dangerous, elements.
About the Author
Joey Green, a former contributing editor to National Lampoon and a former advertising copywriter at J. Walter Thompson, is the author of more than fifty (yes, fifty) books, including “Contrary to Popular Belief,” “Clean It! Fix It! Eat It!,” the best-selling “Joey Green’s Magic Brands” series, “The Mad Scientist Handbook” series, and “You Know You’ve Reached Middle Age If . . .”–to name just a few.
Joey has appeared on dozens of national television shows, including “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” “Good Morning America,” and “The View.” He has been profiled in the “New York Times,” “People” magazine, the “Los Angeles Times,” the “Washington Post,” and “USA Today,” and he has been interviewed on hundreds of radio shows.
A native of Miami, Florida, and a graduate of Cornell University (where he was the political cartoonist on the “Cornell Daily Sun” and founded the campus humor magazine, the “Cornell Lunatic,” still publishing to this very day), he lives in Los Angeles. You can visit him at www.joeygreen.com