Hutto Middle School students experiment during National Chemistry Week

Published 6:14 pm Friday, October 24, 2014


Jashon Mitchell, right, pours water into a graduated cylinder while Jada Donalson holds it steady during an absorbancy experiment. — Shelby Farmer


Mixing a little glue with Borax that’s been dissolved in water can create silly putty if stirred long enough. Food coloring added to the glue will create colorful putty.

Fifth grade students at Hutto Middle School learned that and more Friday when BASF Corporation representatives came to the school for National Chemistry Week.

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The group of volunteers hosted a series of labs for different fifth grade classes on Friday. They taught students about how chemistry is used in everyday life and how to have fun with chemistry.

One of the first experiments focused on polymers used in diapers and how they absorb liquid. The students got hands-on experience with the scientific method when they hypothesized whether a paper towel, sponge or Sham-Wow would absorb more. They then tested their hypotheses to find an answer.

The kids also got a lesson about lab safety and the importance of using equipment properly to prevent accidents or injuries.

The BASF Kids’ Lab is a global program for children creating fun with chemistry and encouraging kids to explore the connections between chemistry and the world around them through safe and engaging, hands-on experiments. It was launched in North America in 2010.

National Chemistry Week is a program of the American Chemical Society that encourages chemists and chemistry enthusiasts to build awareness of chemistry at the local level and promote the value of chemistry in everyday life.