Science-U


Experiment! Each hands-on Science-U experiment includes an overview video, a student handout, and a teacher's guide.  The handouts include a materials list, step-by-step instructions, guided scientific questions, keywords with definitions, and a description of how and why each experiment works. Engage your students in these fun scientific activities!

Science-U is dedicated to advancing science literacy in youth through the sharing and discovery of scientific knowledge. Our chief goals are to educate and inspire students, encourage critical thinking, and prepare them to become responsible, skilled and caring citizens, as well as capable scientists and teachers when faced with tomorrow’s challenges. This is a program of Penn State Science Outreach, the Eberly College of Science, and WPSU. The Science-U activities were adapted from programs developed for our on-campus youth summer camps. 

  • Is a Bubble Always Round? | Science-U

    Is a bubble always round? What do you need to do to create another shape? Can you make a square bubble? See how our Science-U campers did it, then try it yourself with step-by-step instructions and guided scientific questions available in the downloadable handout or at the Science-U website.

    Grades: 2-5
  • What's in an Owl Pellet? | Science-U

    Science-U campers find out what's on an owl's menu when they dissect a ball of bones and fur called an "owl pellet" - a regurgitated chunk of undigested food that is part of an owl's digestive process. Can you determine what an owl eats by dissecting an owl pellet? Try it yourself with step-by-step instructions and guided scientific questions available in the downloadable handout, or at the Science U website. 

    Grades: 4-7
  • Can Something Be Both a Solid and a Liquid? | Science-U

    When is a liquid not always a liquid and a solid not always a solid? When it’s "Oobleck"! Explore Non-Newtonian fluids—solutions that change their state of matter under pressure! Try it yourself with step by step instructions and guided scientific questions available in the downloadable student handout, or on the Science-U website.

    Grades: 2-6
  • Can You Cook a S’more Without a Fire or Electricity? | Science-U

    Can you cook a s’more without a fire or electricity? See how Science U campers make pizza box solar ovens that harness the sun's energy to make a s'more (melted chocolate and marshmallow between two graham crackers).  Try it yourself with step-by-step instructions and guided scientific questions available in the downloadable handout, or at Science U

    Grades: 3-6
  • How Does a Soda Geyser Work? | Science-U

    Are you ready for a blast? Try the Mentos and cola soda geyser experiment! What is the secret behind the reaction between carbonated cola and these little mint candies that makes such an explosion? Try it yourself with step by step instructions and guided scientific questions available in the downloadable handout, or at the Science U website. 

    Grades: 3-8
  • How Do You Drop an Egg Without Breaking It? | Science-U

    NASA faced a huge challenge when they safely landed the Mars Exploration Rovers on the surface of Mars. Can you design a capsule that would protect a raw egg dropped from several stories to the ground? Would your egg survive? See what our campers created and try it yourself with step-by-step instructions and guided scientific questions available in the downloadable handout or at the Science-U website.

    Grades: 3-8
  • How Do You Launch a Rocket Without Using Fuel? | Science-U

    Ready for liftoff? Can you make a rocket and figure out how to launch it without any fuel? See what our Science-U campers created and try it yourself with step-by-step instructions and guided scientific questions available in the downloadable student handout, or on Science-U.org.

    Grades: 3-8
  • How Fast Does Your Brain Send Messages to Your Body? | Science-U

    How fast does the eye send messages to the brain and the brain send messages to your hand muscles to react in time to catch a falling object? Find out using the ruler test! Try it yourself with step by step instructions and guided scientific questions available in the downloadable handout, or at the Science U website. 

    Grades: 3-5
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    Does Backwash Really Happen? | Science-U

    Have you ever caught someone drinking straight out of the milk carton? Does saliva really wash back into the milk carton from your mouth when you take a drink? Test it for yourself using powdered drink powder and see what happens! Try it yourself with step-by-step instructions and guided scientific questions available in the downloadable student handout, or on the Science-U.org website.

    Grades: 2-6
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    Can You Make Muddy Water Crystal Clear? | Science-U

    Did you know that 75% of the earth’s surface is covered by water? Most of it is salt water and can’t be used for drinking. In fact, less than 1% of the earth’s water can be used by people! Learn how to make your own water filter capable of removing dirt, chemicals, and heavy metals. Try it with our step-by-step instructions and guided scientific questions available in the downloadable support materials, or on the Science-U.org website.

    Grades: 3-6
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    What Affects Blood Pressure? | Science-U

    Do you know what your blood pressure is? Learn how to use a stethoscope and a blood pressure cuff to measure blood pressure. Can different activities change blood pressure? Gather a group of friends and try it yourself with our step-by-step instructions and guided scientific questions available in the downloadable support materials, or on the Science-U.org website.

    Grades: 5-8
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    How Do Hungry Caterpillars Find Food? | Science-U

    How does a caterpillar find its food? What do they eat and what senses do they use to find it? Science-U campers encounter the Manduca or Tomato Hornworm caterpillar and test its food-finding abilities. Try it yourself with our step-by-step instructions and guided scientific questions available in the downloadable support materials, or on the Science-U.org website.

    Grades: 2-5
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    Can the Acid in Drinks Really Weaken Your Teeth? | Science-U

    Tooth enamel is tough but can be eroded by acids in your mouth. Can the acid in drinks weaken your teeth? Science-U campers tested their favorite drinks for acid levels with pH test strips and soaked teeth in each drink to see if the acid weakened tooth enamel. Try it yourself with our step-by-step instructions and guided scientific questions available in the downloadable support materials, or on the Science-U.org website.

    Grades: 4-6
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    Can You Extract DNA from a Strawberry? | Science-U

    All living things store genetic information in DNA, but can you actually extract DNA from a plant? Learn how to squish the DNA out of a strawberry! Try it yourself with our step-by-step instructions and guided scientific questions available in the downloadable support materials, or on the Science-U.org website.

    Grades: 4-7
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    Can You Get Power from a Lemon? | Science-U

    Batteries consist of two different metals suspended in an acidic solution. Is it possible to use the acid in a lemon make a battery strong enough to power an LED? Try it yourself with our step-by-step instructions and guided scientific questions available in the downloadable support materials, or on the Science-U.org website.

    Grades: 6-12
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    Can You Make a Comet? | Science-U

    What is in a comet? Some scientists call it a "dirty snowball in space". With adult supervision, you can make your own comet with a mixture of materials that might surprise you. The resulting lump makes a comet tail of melting gases when you hold it up to a lamp in a darkened room. Try it yourself with our step-by-step instructions and guided scientific questions available in the downloadable support materials, or on the Science-U.org website.

    Grades: 3-8

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