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Fizzy Colors Surprise: Free Preschool Science Lesson Plan

Today, we're going to dive into a squeal worthy preschool science experiment known as Fizzy Colors Surprise, and it comes with a FREE downloadable preschool science lesson plan at the end of this post.

With just a few household ingredients, you'll dazzle your preschoolers in the name of chemistry. Each time they add a dash of vinegar to a muffin pan, a new surprise color will be revealed as the baking soda and vinegar reacts and reveals the food coloring below. So, let's gather our materials and dive into the fascinating world of chemistry!

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muffin pan with colorful bubbles rising in each cup, last cup has baking soda in it, child's hand holding a pipette with white vinegar in it

Prepare Your Fizzy Colors Science Experiment

By doing this experiment, we will introduce preschoolers to basic chemical reactions using baking soda and vinegar. Children will make predictions and observations, record their findings, and describe the changes they notice happening during the chemical reaction.

Standards listed in the lesson plan are from the California Preschool Science Standards.


  1. Muffin pan (I use 1 twelve cup muffin pan for 2-3 children.)
  2. Baking soda
  3. Food coloring (assorted colors, make sure it's liquid/not the gel kind)
  4. White Vinegar (cheapest at grocery stores)
  5. Droppers or pipettes (optional but these plastic ones are our favorites)
  6. Spoons
  7. Safety goggles (optional but kids love a little dress up action)
  8. Observation recording sheet included without watermark in the downloadable lesson plan
printable observation recording sheet for free science lesson plan for preschoolers

Prepare for the experiment:

  1. Place your muffin pan(s) on the tables.
  2. In each cup of the muffin pan add a few drops of different food coloring. You can even mix 2 colors like red and blue to reveal purple.
  3. Using your spoon, scoop enough baking soda to cover up the color droplets in each pan
  4. Fill a separate container with the white vinegar. You can even cut the white vinegar with some water if you're worried you won't have enough. You really don't need a lot to create this reaction!
  5. Place spoons/pipettes nearby, one for each child.

Watch this video to see how easy it all is!

Fizzing Colors Surprise! A Preschool Science Lesson:

Introduction Phase

  1. Introduce the supplies: baking soda, vinegar, food coloring, pipettes, and muffin pans by asking students if they know what they are and whether they have used them before.
  2. Share that today we have muffin pans with food coloring and baking soda, and our job as the scientist will be to add small amounts of white vinegar to each muffin pan then observe what happens.
  3. Ask the children what they predict will happen if you add vinegar to a muffin pan cup.
    • Explain that a scientific prediction is called a hypothesis and that a hypothesis doesn't have to be right. It is just a guess we have now that is based on what information we already have.
    • List or chart the children's predictions to circle back to at the end of the lesson.
  4. Explain expectations - we know kids can go ham, so let's set some rules first!
    • Show kids how to use a pipette or spoon to gather vinegar, and ask them where it goes (only in the muffin pan).
    • Determine how many muffin pan cups each child will be allowed to do, especially if they're sharing a larger pan between 2-3 kids.
    • Decide whether or not you'll be allowing them to touch the mixture formed and be clear that nothing goes in their mouths (although all these items are used in baking, so if it accidentally happens, you're in the clear!)

Experiment Phase

  1. Begin the experiment:
    • Provide each child with a dropper or pipette and ask them to fill it with vinegar from the container.
    • Instruct them to slowly squeeze the vinegar onto the baking soda and food coloring mixture, observing the fascinating reaction.
    • Pause for children to share what happened with their peers. Kids will observe a fizzing chemical reaction between the baking soda and the vinegar as they add in more vinegar, and the fizzing will be the color of whatever food coloring was below. This will be an exciting revelation!
    • Continue to add vinegar to the number of allotted muffin cups.
  2. Observing and discussing:
    • Encourage children to describe what they see, hear, and smell during the experiment.
    • Discuss the cause and effect relationship between the baking soda, vinegar, and the resulting fizzing reaction.
    • Prompt observational questions such as: What happens when we mix the vinegar with the baking soda? What happens when you add just a little vinegar? What happens when you add more vinegar? What colors do you see?

Results and Conclusions

  1. Complete the observation sheet included in the lesson plan, so children can draw their results.
  2. Review the results and previous hypotheses. Did any of them come true?
  3. Explain that a chemical reaction is when two things combine and form a new substance. In this experiment the children took a liquid (vinegar) and a solid (baking soda), and combined them to make a new substance called carbon dioxide gas.
children pipetting white vinegar into baking soda and revealing colors underneath

Download Your Free Preschool Science Lesson Plan:

The Fizzy Colors Surprise experiment is an excellent opportunity for preschoolers to engage in scientific inquiry while having a blast with colors and textures (much like our most popular free STEM lesson plan The Floor Is Lava!). Through this hands-on experience, children develop their observation skills, make predictions, and have fun.

Remember, the most important part is to foster a sense of wonder and curiosity, so be sure to have fun and encourage open-ended discussions throughout the experiment.

Safety Note: Although this experiment is safe when conducted with adult supervision, please remind children not to ingest any of the materials used. Also, wearing safety goggles can add an extra layer of protection for their eyes.

So, gather your materials, put on your scientist hats, and let the fizzy colors surprise unfold! Happy experimenting!

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