Day 3 of Science camp was ninety-five degrees and humid, so we spent most of the afternoon studying the cooling effect of water at the city pool.
When we got home, we did an easy experiment using water, fruit juice and baking soda and found that by adding baking soda to different juices, you can see which juices contain citric acid. You can even taste the results! Baking soda is a base, and many fruit juices contain citric acid. When the two are combined, carbon dioxide gas is formed as bubbles in the liquid, carbonating it. My kids loved this experiment!
Just pour about a cup of lemonade, orange juice, grape juice, or any other juice into separate glasses. Pour a glass of water as a control. Water doesn’t contain citric acid, so won’t produce bubbles. Then, add about half a teaspoon of baking soda to each glass and taste the results.
We were surprised to find that our grape juice produced bubbles, but discovered that it contained added citric acid when we read the label! A side effect of this experiment is kids asking to add baking soda to their juice at breakfast so that they can have “pop”.