- Acid & Base Demos (14)
- Chemistry Experiments
- Chemistry Magic Tricks
- Color Demonstrations
- Endothermic & Exothermic (12)
- Holiday Chem Demos (23)
- Home Chemistry Demonstrations (40)
Chemistry demonstrations can capture a student's attention and spark an enduring interest in the science. Here's a look at some noteworthy chemistry demos.
Favorite Chemistry Demonstration
Part of what makes chemistry such a fun science are memorable chemistry demonstrations! Is there a particular chemistry demonstration that stands out for you as 'the best ever'?
Fire and Flames Chemistry Demonstrations
Are you looking for an exciting chemistry demonstration? How about one that involves fire, flames and sparks? Here is a collection of simple demonstrations that produce spectacular fiery results.
Top Chemistry Demonstrations & Activities
This is the list of my personal favorite chemistry demonstrations and activities. They tend to involve pretty colors, fire, or ice. Some projects require adult supervision or access to a chemistry lab. Others are easy and safe enough for kids to perform.
Barking Dog Demonstration
The Barking Dog chemistry demonstration is based on an exothermic reaction between nitrous or nitric oxide and carbon disulfide. Ignition of the mixture results in a bright blue chemiluminescent flash accompanied by a characteristic barking sound.
Bend Water with Static Electricity
Use static electricity to bend a stream of flowing water. This is an easy science activity that illustrates how opposite electrical charges attract each other.
Blue Bottle Color Change Demonstration
Learn how to perform the blue bottle chemistry demonstration, in which a blue liquid becomes clear, then returns to blue when swirled around. Instructions are also given for red -> clear -> red and green -> red -> green reactions.
Blueprint Paper - How to Make Blueprint Paper
Blueprint paper is a specially-coated paper that turns blue where it is exposed to light, while areas kept in the dark remain white. Blueprints were one of the first ways to make copies of plans or drawings. Here's how to make blueprint paper yourself.
Bouncing Polymer Ball
Use chemistry to make a bouncing polymer ball, then alter the procedure to see the effect the changes have on the charactertistics of the bouncing ball.
Briggs-Rauscher Oscillating Color Change Reaction
The Briggs-Rauscher reaction, also known as 'the oscillating clock', is one of the most common demonstrations of a chemical oscillator reaction. Three colorless solutions are mixed together, producing a mixture that oscillates between clear, amber, and deep blue.
Burning Money Chemistry Demonstration
Set money on fire and watch it burn out without damaging the bill. This is a nice magic trick, based on everyday chemistry.
Candle Science Magic Trick
You know you can put out a candle flame by pouring water on it. In this science magic trick, the candle will go out when you pour 'air' onto it.
Learn four ways to make fire using chemical reactions. No matches or lighter are needed to start the fire.
High School Chemistry Demonstrations
High school science students are hard to impress! Here's a list of top chemistry demonstrations to capture student interest and illustrate chemistry concepts.
Chemistry Fun with Pennies
Use pennies, nails, and a few simple household ingredients to explore some of the interesting properties of metals. Clean the pennies chemically, make verdigris, and plate the nails with copper.
Christmas Chemistry Demonstration
Color change reactions are classic fare for chemistry demonstrations. You can perform a Christmas chemistry demonstration in which the color of a solution changes from green to red and back to green. The Christmas color change can be repeated over and over again.
Chromatography with Candy and Coffee Filters
Analyze the dyes used in your favorite candies with paper chromatography using a coffee filter, colored candies, and a salt solution.
Classic Chemical Volcano
Here are the instructions for making the classic chemical volcano. This demonstration uses ammonium dichromate to produce 'Vesuvius fire', with glowing sparks and a cone of deep green ash.
Cloud in a Bottle Demonstration
Here's a quick and easy science project you can do: make a cloud inside a bottle. This simple project uses water vapor and smoke from a match to help form a cloud.
Have you ever wanted to color fire? Here are simple, nontechnical instructions for making your own colored flames. Add extra interest to your fireplace or campfire!
Color Change Chemical Volcano Demonstration
This chemical volcano features lava that changes color. The chemical volcano can be used to illustrate an acid-base reaction and the use of an acid-base indicator.
Colored Fire Spray Bottles
You can spritz a flame with chemicals to change the color of the fire. Colored fire spray bottles are easy to prepare and use common chemicals.
Colored Fireworks Rainbow Demonstration
Make a colored fireworks rainbow. Burn the same chemicals used to color fireworks, in a row to produce a rainbow effect.
Colored Smoke Recipes
Colored smoke is easy to make and requires few ingredients. Here's a list of some colored smoke formulations to try.
Colored Soap Bubbles
Make brightly colored pink and blue soap bubbles that won't stain clothing or surfaces.
Dancing Charcoal Chemistry Demonstration
Drop a small piece of charcoal into a test tube of melted potassium nitrate and watch the charcoal dance as it burns. This is a fun and simple chemistry demonstration that illutrates decomposition and oxidation (combustion) chemical reactions.
Dancing Gummi Bear Demonstration
Place a Gummi Bear candy into a test tube containing molten potassium chlorate and watch it dance amidst purple flames. This stunning demonstration is an example of a strongly product-favored reaction, plus it's a lot of fun.
Disappearing Ink Instructions
Learn how to make blue or red ink that will disappear after exposure to air. Tips for restoring the color and an explanation of the acid-base chemistry of the reaction are also included.
Dissolve Styrofoam in Acetone
Dissolving Styrofoam or another polystyrene product in acetone is a spectacular demonstration of the solubility of this plastic in an organic solvent, plus it illustrates just how much air is in the Styrofoam.
Diving Ketchup Magic Trick
Place a ketchup packet in a bottle of water and make it rise and fall at your command, as if by magic. Of course, the magic involves some basic science. Here's how to do the diving ketchup trick and how it works.
Dry Ice Bubble
The giant bubble you can make using dry ice and bubble solution sort of resembles a crystal ball. This is an easy and spectacular science project.
Egg in a Bottle Demonstration
You don't see air and might not think much of it is contained in a bottle, but air and the pressure it exerts can be very powerful. The egg in a bottle demonstration illustrates the concept of air pressure.
Endothermic Reaction Demonstration
Here's an endothermic reaction demonstration that is easy to do and cold enough to freeze water.
Endothermic Reaction Examples
Are you looking for examples of endothermic reactions for homework or to set up a demonstration? Here's a list of several heat-absorbing or endothermic chemical reactions and processes.
Epsom Salt Crystals
Epsom salt crystals are easy to grow and form quickly. Here's what you need to know to make your own magnesium sulfate crystals.
Elephant Toothpaste Chemistry Demonstration
The elephant toothpaste chemistry demonstration produces copious amounts of steaming foam that looks like the toothpaste an elephant might use. Here's how to set up this demonstration and a look at the reactions behind it.
If you can find a tee shirt and some lighter fluid, you can make small fireballs. These fireballs are re-useable. Theoretically, you can hold them in your hand.
Use dry ice to freeze bubbles solid so that you can pick them up and examine them closely. You can use this project to demonstrate several scientific principles, such as density, interference, semipermeability, and diffusion.
Here are simple instructions for preparing common gases from ordinary chemicals. The gases include carbon dioxide, oxygen, nitrogen, methane, nitrous oxide, chlorine, and several others.
Gold and Silver Pennies
Take copper pennies and turn then silver, then make them gold. This is an easy chemistry project that uses common laboratory chemicals.
Green Fire Instructions
It's easy to make brilliant green fire. This cool chemistry project only takes two household chemicals.
Grow Great Crystals
Do you want to grow crystals, but you aren't sure where to start or what to do to make sure your crystals turn out well? Here's some basic information on crystal growing. I've provided links to recipes so you can start growing crystals. These instructions are general, so if your recipe calls for something special (like no vibrations or dark), be...
Grow Sugar Crystals - Make Your Own Rock Candy
Sugar crystals are also known as rock candy since the crystallized sucrose resembles rock crystals and because you can eat your finished product. You can grow clear sugar crystals with sugar and water or you can add food coloring to get colored crystals. It's simple, safe, and fun.
Halloween Reaction or Old Nassau Reaction
The Old Nassau or Halloween reaction is a clock reaction in which the color of a chemical solution changes from orange to black. Here's how you can do this reaction as a chemistry demonstration.
Hot and Cold Color Change Chemistry Demonstration
This is a fun color change chemistry demonstration, just right for Valentine's Day. Take a pink solution and watch it turn colorless upon heating. When the solution cools it becomes pink again.
Human Battery Demonstration
Make a human battery by substituting fingers for the salt bridge in a galvanic cell. You can make a human battery with one person, a group of people, or even a thousand people. This is a simple yet impressive electrochemistry demonstration.
Ice Cream in a Baggie
Make a tasty treat and learn about freezing point depression, too! All you need are some basic ingredients and two ziploc baggies. It's easy, fun, and educational.
Instant Fire Chemistry Demonstration
Learn how to perform the instant fire chemistry demonstration in which potassium chlorate and sugar are reacted to produce an incredible purple flame and a lot of smoke.
Jumping Rubber or Polybutadiene
The "jumping rubber" polybutadiene reaction is a dramatic chemistry demonstration in which chemicals are reacted and sealed into a container, which pops open, shooting out a polymer "snake". Here is how to perform the demonstration.
Ivory Soap Microwave Trick
Microwave a bar of Ivory soap and watch it expand to over six times its original size. The foam trick is good clean fun, plus it can be used to demonstrate Charles' Law, physical change, and foam formation.
Liquid Magnets - Synthesize Ferrofluid
Make your own ferrofluid, or liquid magnet, which can be used with a magnet to change the liquid's density and to form spikes and other amazing shapes.
Liquid Nitrogen Ice Cream
Make liquid nitrogen ice cream as a cool cryogenics or phase change demonstration or for a quick and tasty treat.
Luminol Chemiluminescence Test for Blood
You can use the luminol chemiluminescence reaction as a quick and easy forensic test for blood. Here's a look at what you need to perform the test, how to do it, and an explanation of how the luminol test works.
Magic Genie Chemistry Demonstration
Drop a chemical into a flask to produce a cloud of water vapor and oxygen, resembling a magic genie emerging from its bottle. This chemistry demonstration can be used to introduce the concepts of decomposition reactions, exothermic reactions and catalysts.
Magic Rocks - Chemical Garden
Learn about the chemistry behind magic rocks and make your own chemical crystal garden.
Mentos & Diet Soda Chemical Volcano
Candies and diet soda together can make a chemical 'volcano' with an eruption several feet high. If the normal baking soda volcano is too tame for you, give this project a try.
Mixture and a Compound from Iron and Sulfur
Do you know the difference between a mixture and a compound? Combine iron and sulfur to make a mixture and then react them to form a chemical compound.
Nitrogen Triiodide Chemistry Demonstration
Learn how to perform the nitrogen triiodide chemistry demonstration, a spectacular touch-sensitive decomposition that produces a cloud of purple smoke and a loud 'snap'.
Pepper and Water Science Magic Trick
The pepper and water science trick is one of the easiest magic tricks you can perform. Here's how to do the trick and an explanation of how it works.
Pharaoh's Snake Firework
Pharaoh's snake or Pharaoh's serpent is a small firework that produces a growing snake of ash when it is ignited. Here's how you can make Pharaoh's snake yourself for a firework or a chemistry pyrotechnic demonstration.
Potato Clock - Make a Potato Battery to Power an LED Clock
A potato can function as an electrochemical cell or battery. It's fun to use a potato to power an LED clock.
Quick Sheet Crystals
If you don't have the time or patience to grow crystals over hours, days, or longer, try growing these sheet crystals. You'll get results in seconds!
Rainbow in a Glass Density Demonstration
Make a rainbow in a glass using colored sugar solutions with different densities. This project is very easy and safe enough to drink.
Rainbow Wand Chemistry Demonstration
An acid-base rainbow wand is an easy and colorful chemistry demonstration which illustrates the range of colors available for a pH indicator solution.
Red Cabbage pH Indicator
Make your own pH indicator solution! Red cabbage juice indicator is easy to make, exhibits a wide range of colors, and can be used to make your own pH paper strips.
Red Cabbage pH Paper
Learn how to make your own pH indicator test strips using red cabbage. This is a fun, safe, and easy chemistry project that you can do at home.
Silver Tree Chemistry Demonstration
In this simple chemistry demonstration you'll grow a silver crystal tree.
Smoke Bomb Instructions
You can easily make a smoke bomb using inexpensive materials to produce safe smoke.
Smoking Fingers Trick
Make your fingers smoke when you rub them together and glow in the dark. All you need is a matchbox and a way to burn the striker portion.
Sodium in Water Chemistry Demonstration
The sodium in water chemistry demonstration is a spectacular demo that illustrates the reactivity of an alkali metal with water and may be used as an example of an exothermic reaction. This is an interesting and memorable demonstration, which can be performed safely.
Learn how to make your own sparklers, for Independence Day or New Years Day fun. Use your understanding of chemistry to color the sparks.
Sulfur Hexafluoride Demonstrations
Sulfur hexafluoride is a non-toxic, invisible gas that you can use to perform interesting chemistry demonstrations. Breathe it in and make your voice much deeper when you talk. Pour it into a container and float an airplane or a ship on 'nothing'.
Sulfuric Acid and Sugar Demonstration
Ordinary table sugar and sulfuric acid react to produce a growing black column. This demonstration is an example of an exothermic reaction and a dehydration reaction. It is good for discussions about the nature of carbohydrates, hydrogen bonds, and carbon properties.
You can cool water below its stated freezing point and then crystallize it into ice on command. This is known as supercooling. These are step-by-step instructions for supercooling water at home.
Table Salt or Sodium Chloride Crystals
It's easy to grow your own table salt or sodium chloride crystals. All it takes is salt and boiling water. One method even yields crystals within a few hours. Here's what you need to know.
Test Tube Thunderstorm Demonstration
You can react chemicals to produce what looks like a thunderstorm in a test tube. This is a spectacular chemisty demonstration that is suitable for chemistry class or lab.
The thermite reaction is a highly exothermic reaction in which metal essentially burns. The thermite reaction has practical applications, such as for welding, plus it makes for a memorable chemistry demonstration. Here's how you can perform the thermite reaction, safely.
Trading Places - Liquid Science Magic Trick
Take two glasses of different-colored liquids and watch the liquids switch places in the glasses. This science magic trick or demonstration can be performed using many different liquids, such as water and wine, water and oil, or water and whiskey.
Traveling Flame Science Trick
You know you can light a candle with another candle, but if you blow one of them out, did you know you can relight it from a distance? In this trick, you'll blow out a candle and relight it by causing flame to travel along a path of smoke.
Ultimate Colored Smoke Bomb
Make a smoke bomb that billows clouds of brightly colored smoke. This project is easy and safe enough to at home. Adult supervision is required.
Water into Wine Demonstration
Turn a clear liquid into a red liquid, then back to clear again. This demonstration is commonly called turning water into wine or blood, and can be used to demonstrate acid-base indicators.
Water - Wine - Milk - Beer Chemistry Demo
Here's a color change chemistry demo in which a solution seems to change from water to wine to milk to beer simply be being poured into the appropriate beverage glass.
White Smoke Chemistry Demonstration
Learn how to perform the white smoke chemistry demonstration, in which a cloud of ammonium chloride crystals are produced from reacting ammonia and hydrochloric acid.
Yeast & Hydrogen Peroxide Volcano
Here's how to make a safe and easy chemical volcano using two common inexpensive household ingredients.
Barking Dog Reaction - Chemistry Demonstration Video
Here's a link and description for a movie of the barking dog reaction. The chemistry demonstration video is available via the University of Leeds.
Violet Smoke Chemistry Demonstration
Here are two ways to produce violet smoke for a colorful chemistry demonstration.
Chemistry Demonstrations - Quickies
Short and sweet chemistry demonstrations! In most cases, these demos entail easy set-up as well as instant gratification.
Mercury Beating Heart
The Mercury Beating Heart is a popular chemistry demonstration based on an an electrochemical redox reaction that causes a blob of mercury to oscillate, resembling a beating heart. Here's how the Mercury Beating Heart works and how you can perform this chemistry demonstration yourself.
Gallium Beating Heart
The gallium beating heart is a chemistry demonstration in which a drop of gallium is made to pulsate, like a beating heart. The gallium beating heart is similar to the mercury beating heart, but gallium is much less toxic, so this demonstration may be preferable.
SMILE Program Chemistry Index
This is a collection of around 200 single concept lessons. Some fall into the category of demonstrations and others are complete laboratory exercises. Hosted by the Illinois Institute of Technology. Highly recommended!
Olympic Ring Colors Chemistry Demonstration
Produce the colors of the Olympic rings in this easy chemistry color change demonstration.
Color Change Liquid Thermometer
This color change chemistry project produces a liquid that oscillates between pink and blue according to temperature.
Vanishing Valentine Chemistry Demonstration
The Vanishing Valentine chemistry demonstration is a color change demonstration in which a solution turns from clear to pink and back to clear. It can be used for Valentine's Day or to illustrate oxidation and reduction reactions any time of the year.
Boil Water in a Paper Bag
This chemistry demonstration or project shows you how to boil water over an open flame in a paper bag. The bag won't catch on fire, nor will the water leak out. Here's how to do it.
Leidenfrost Effect Demonstrations
There are several ways you can demonstrate the Leidenfrost effect. Here is an explanation of the Leidenfrost effect and instructions for performing science demonstrations with water, liquid nitrogen, and lead.
The reaction used to make nylon sometimes is called the nylon rope trick because nylon is produces as a single long hollow tube or rope. Here is how to make nylon or perform the nylon rope trick.
See Photosynthesis in Action -- Floating Spinach Disks Demonstration
Watch spinach leaf disks risk and fall in a baking soda solution in response to photosynthesis.