When I think back to childhood, many of my fondest memories are outside building, creating and messing with simple science. My go-to boredom buster was to make a volcano out of mud, add baking soda and vinegar to the top and watch the eruption. It never got old. This reaction combined with a toy car wash has now saved my sanity many days as a mom, and is the best witching hour activity for my littles!
Set up an Awesome Toy Car Wash
Because the chemical reaction between baking soda and vinegar is so fun, I buy it in bulk (thank you Costco). There are SO many ways to play and explore with this reaction and it literally never gets old for the kids. For this simple science project, we decided to turn it into a toy car wash!
What you need:
- baking soda
- food coloring (optional)
- toy cars
What to do:
I like to use under-the-bed storage bins for messy indoor play. It’s big enough to contain the mess, but still easy enough to clean up. Win win. In the bin we have cars, our ‘ingredients’ (baking soda and colored vinegar) and a smaller bin of soapy water and some washcloths.
Kids can carefully pour the vinegar into the baking soda until we a reaction forms, then drive the cars through it!
Continue this process, driving the cars through the goop and playing with the ingredients.
After a good dip in the baking soda and vinegar, the ‘dirty’ cars can make their way to the warm, soapy water.
It’s amazing how much fun pretending to wash some toys are- and believe it or not, all of our cars are now squeaky clean!
Playing with this kind of simple science can teach even the youngest kids about the reactions created when different materials are mixed together. Additionally, playing in water is one of the simplest, and best sensory experiences for kids!
Originally published on Jul 31, 2015.
For more toddler activities, check these out!
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