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Ever wondered how elephants brush their teeth? Well let’s be real, they do not. But with this experiment, you can create enough “toothpaste” for an entire elephant herd!

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Materials:      

  • Clean 16 ounce plastic soda bottle
  • 1/2 cup of 6% hydrogen peroxide solution
  • 1 tablespoon of dry yeast
  • 3 tablespoons of warm water
  • Liquid dish washing soap
  • Food coloring
  • Small cup
  • Safety goggles
  • Newspaper or napkins             

Procedure:

  1. Spread newspaper or napkins on the surface that you plan to work on (yes, it will get messy).
  2. Put on your safety goggles and have an adult pour the hydrogen peroxide into the bottle.
  3. Add 8 drops of your favorite food coloring into the bottle.
  4. Pour about 1 tablespoon of the dish washing soap and swirl the bottle around to mix it. 
  5. Combine the warm water and yeast in the separate cup. Mix for about 30 seconds.
  6. Pour the yeast mixture inside of the bottle and stand back as the toothpaste begins to form!

This elephant toothpaste that you have created is actually foam. Each tiny foam bubble is filled with oxygen. The yeast removed the oxygen from the hydrogen peroxide at a very fast rate, causing many bubbles to form. You may also notice that the bottle feels warm since this is an exothermic reaction. This may sound complicated but it just means that the reaction releases heat. The foam or “toothpaste” is made out of just water, soap, and oxygen, so feel free to wipe it away or pour it down the drain when cleaning up! 

Sources: ScienceBob             Photo Credit: Preschool Powol Packets                                                                                                                                 

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