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Science Experiments for Kids


Reverse Garden

Plant a reverse garden, starting with garbage, and investigate what "biodegradable" means. Instead of planting seeds and bulbs and watching plants and flowers sprout blossoms, bury different kinds of garbage for this science experiment and observe them as they decompose.

What You'll Need:

  • Deep pan
  • Trowel
  • Soil
  • Variety of garbage (apple core, dried leaves, newspaper, plastic foam, old sock, empty can)
  • Watering can or pitcher

Step 1: Fill a deep pan with soil, and bury several kinds of garbage under the soil. For example, plant an apple core, some dried leaves, a crumpled piece of newspaper, a piece of plastic foam, an old sock, and an empty can.

Step 2: Water your garden every couple of days.

Step 3: Dig up the garden after a week, and see what is happening to the items.

Step 4: Rebury your decomposing plantings, and continue to water every couple days.

Step 5: Dig up the garden again, and observe it after two or three more weeks.

Step 6: Replant it one more time, and check it in several more weeks. Note what changes -- and how -- and what does not.

You may want to keep a journal and make sketches each time you unearth your garden for observation. (Be sure to wash your hands or wear disposable gloves each time you work in your reverse garden.)

Look on the next page to find out how you can make crystal creations by adding a sparkling crystal coat to decorations and paper sculptures.

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