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Materials Science STEM Activities for Kids (17 results)

Materials science is a fascinating area of research that is often at the cutting edge of science and engineering. It involves both developing new materials and improving on existing ones, and has important applications both for improving daily life and for advancing other fields of research. You can try your hand at making and testing all kinds of substances from plastic to slime.

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Have you ever heard that plastic can be made out of milk? If this sounds like something made-up to you, you may be surprised to learn that from the early 1900s until about 1945, milk was commonly used to make many different plastic ornaments, including buttons, decorative buckles, beads and other jewelry, fountain pens, the backings for hand-held mirrors, and fancy comb and brush sets. Milk plastic (usually called casein plastic) was even used to make jewelry for Queen Mary of England! In… Read more
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Have you ever seen the Diet Coke® and Mentos® experiment, which is all over the Internet, and wondered what makes the reaction work? You might think that there is some ingredient in a Mentos candy causing a chemical reaction with the soda, like the way baking soda reacts with vinegar. But the amazing eruption that takes place when Mentos are dropped into Diet Coke is not a chemical reaction at all! Instead it is a physical reaction. That means that all of the pieces of the reaction… Read more
STEM Activity
Don't have your own 3D printer? No problem! In this fun activity you will make your own colorful 3D prints using craft sand and glue. No 3D printer required! Read more
STEM Activity
Do you hate doing the dishes, folding laundry, or cleaning up your room? Do you wish you could figure out a way to get these tasks done faster? Figure out how as you take on the role of a production engineer in this fun activity! Read more
STEM Activity
Balloons are fun and come in a variety of sizes, colors, and forms that makes them well suited for decorations, water play, modeling, and other creative activities. But balloons also have uses outside of recreation; weather balloons, balloons used to widen obstructed arteries, and balloons that provide transportation are just a few examples. The first balloons were made of animal bladders or intestines. This made way for the latex, rubber, and nylon fabric balloons we see today. Have you ever… Read more
STEM Activity
Are you wondering how a 3D printer works? In this fun activity, you will be the printer and make colorful 3D prints using royal icing. No 3D printer is required, and your prints are edible! Read more
STEM Activity
Design and 3D print your own snowflake ornament with Tinkercad in this fun winter-themed STEM activity. Read more
STEM Activity
Maybe you have grown vegetables or flowers, but have you ever grown the flowerpot? Yes, you read that right! In this activity, you will use mushroom roots to grow a biodegradable material that can be molded into a product of your liking, like a flowerpot! Growing a set of bowls, a lampshade, or a pot is easier than you might think. Once you try it out, you just might feel inspired to replace some of your plastic objects with ecological counterparts that you created from mushroom roots! Read more
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Have you ever tried to catch a bubble without popping it? It's hard! What materials can you use to successfully catch a bubble? Do some materials work better than others? Try this activity to find out. Read more
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Have you ever seen an arch structure in a building, such as over a doorway or surrounding large windows? Arches have been used in structural engineering since ancient times. In this activity you will test the strength of a naturally occurring arch shape: the shell of an egg. So grab some eggs and put them to good engineering use in trying to answer the following question: Just how much mass can an eggshell can support? Read more
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