Fulham - Fizzy Fireworks!

Our Week in the Forest... 

This week we moved to our new site in the grounds of Fulham Palace and it took the children no time at all to make themselves at home! Throughout the previous week all the children had visited the new site on a number of occasions to help take over some of our resources and explore this new area of the forest, so they were very aware that we would be heading somewhere new on Monday. They have settled effortlessly into their new surroundings and have shown lots of curiosity exploring and establishing their new favourite places to play. With the support of the gardeners, and one of their diggers, we even managed to transport over our mud mountain, an essential companion for our mud kitchen.
We also started this week hearing about the children’s very exciting weekends seeing the fireworks! They spoke about how they’d gone out in the dark to see them or how they had been woken up in the night by the loud banging, whatever their experience they were definitely excited to share it. We went on to discuss why they thought we had displays of fireworks, and spoke about Guy Fawkes and Diwali – the children showed lots of curiosity regarding both celebrations and had lots of questions about the story of Rama and Sita, which we had recently read.

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Following on from these discussions we decided upon making our own ‘fireworks’ this week! So of course, we needed to find some alternatives to gunpowder and also something for the firework casing. So, under close supervision our little scientists set to work experimenting with a variety of ingredients that reacted together, Mentos, baking soda, alma seltzer, fizzy water and vinegar… The children took turns to carefully pour the mixtures together to discover which ones reacted the most, and in turn would make our rocket go the highest. Once they had agreed upon the best mixture we discussed how to make the rocket. We ended up with a design using an old film canister on top which made a rocket cone. So, launch pad at the ready each child had the opportunity to place the mixture in the canister with Bella, before making a dash back to their seat to watch the “firework” fly high into the air. They tested various combinations such as using fizzy or still water and half, one or two alka seltzers. We found fizzy water combined with one tablet sent the fireworks highest, whooooooshh!
The following day the children continued with their experimentations using food colouring, vinegar and bicarbonate to make their large mud volcano erupt! Excited by the reaction they celebrated with each other and discussed what they had observed and how they could make new mixtures. The mud kitchen was their next stop where they incorporated further ingredients, creating new concoctions that fizzed and bubbled alongside their imaginary play.

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Little Forest Folk