Maggie's son Jack turned five last week, and he informed us that he wanted to have a science party. We put on our thinking caps and came up with some fun and simple ideas and activities to get the kids brains working while having fun at the same time! So while we don't really have a tutorial for you all today, we thought we'd shared the various aspects of our homemade party, as well as let you in on a few of our frugal tricks!
To make this an official science party, we ordered the kids lab coats from this company. We found they had disposable ones for super-cheap and the kids loved dressing up. To make them even sillier, we put gobs of hair gel in their hair so they could have "mad scientist hair". It was a simple thing, but it really helped set the tone for the party.
Jack's first requirement was that his party needed to have a piñata in the shape of an exploding test tube. WHAT?? After a few moments of thinking, "how in the world are we going to pull this off?", we checked out our post from last year on making a piñata. Using a long balloon for the basic shape, we covered it in paper mache, then covered it in tissue paper to make it look like a test tube filled with green stuff. To make it look like it was exploding, we cut out a circle of paper to cover the top of the "tube" and made a plume of red, orange, and yellow tissue paper to be the explosion and a little green tissue added to make it look like the stuff inside was coming out as well. To complete the look we added measurement lines and numbers up the front of the piñata (we numbered it from 1 to 5, since Jack was turning 5). We think it turned out pretty cute!
Since the majority of the kids at the party were around 5, we tried to come up with some age-appropriate experiments for them to do, such as sucking an egg into a bottle, observing celery in colored water, making a volcano with baking soda and vinegar (with sand playdough for the base!), and exploding a bottle of soda with Mentos.
Our boys (and most boys we know) LOVE to get messy. So we decided that one of our activities would be to make slime. With the kids, Rebecca whipped up a batch using liquid starch, food coloring, and white glue. This gloppy, slimy, stretchy, sticky stuff kept the kids occupied for a long time. With this activity, we were happy they had lab coats because some of our scientists got a bit messy! We also had some test tubes (which we found at Amazon.com for free thanks to a gift certificate!) in the goody bags filled with our slime for the kids to take home!
After the kids were finsihed with experiments, we had pizza and of course cake! Maggie was inspired by this brain cake but thought it might be a little small to feel the crowd we were having. So she decided to make the brain but have it hooked up to some sort of machine (made from a sheet cake). What mad scientist wouldn't love that?
This turned out the be a great party for Jack and all the kids. They were able to be involved in so many activities and even learn a few things in the process. And all this fun cost us very little money. Almost everything we used was either homemade or found at incredible prices. Three cheers for thrifty fun!
We had to share this picture of Rebecca's son Jonah making his "mad scientist face" - hilarious!