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Investigate: Putting the Fizz Back into Science

In this worksheet, students will plan, execute and write up a conclusion for an investigation into the reaction between baking soda and vinegar. It gives students a chance to consolidate their understanding of the steps taken in carrying out a scientific investigation.

'Investigate: Putting the Fizz Back into Science' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 2

Curriculum topic:   Exam-Style Questions: SATs Science

Curriculum subtopic:   Exam-Style Questions: Investigating

Difficulty level:  

Worksheet Overview

QUESTION 1 of 10

Gold medal

 

Your EdPlace team are hard at it to help you get your #1 investigator gold medal. Whilst scientific investigations require doing, rather than reading, we're here to flag up investigative aspects that need to be considered, to help you focus in on the important parts of an experiment.

 

First off - there's a question to answer. How about

Alfie, Jacob and Tammy's question: "How much baking soda and vinegar will make the best volcanic eruption?" (they've got a model volcano and need to make a fizzy eruption!).

 

 

 

Next there's a starting point: "Let's start with equal amounts," says Tammy.

 

Then there's the plan, getting the equipment together, gathering the data (that's the results of each 'test') and then working out what's been found out (that's the conclusion).

 

Finally, reporting on the findings is really important so that the team can show what they did, what happened and what the best mixture is for a fizzy volcanic eruption!

Baking soda  Vinegar

 

When the young investigators mix the white powder, baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) with the liquid vinegar, the two chemicals react together in an exciting, fizzy way, releasing the gas carbon dioxide (CO2).

 

What sort of reaction is this?

Reversible

Irreversible

Boiling

Evaporating

The first problem the team of scientists face is how to measure how 'fizzy' their mixture is.

 

"We could weigh it and see how much lighter it gets," suggests Alfie.

 

"How about trying to fill a balloon with the carbon dioxide and seeing how big it gets," is what Jacob thinks.

 

"Why don't we do the reaction in a glass where we can measure how high the fizzy mixture rises," is Tammy's idea.

 

The team like Tammy's idea best, but aren't sure if there's a glass with measurements up the side. 

 

Can you help them with what this piece of apparatus is called?

It's written in the form of an anagram: GERANIUMS NICERDLY

The three young scientists decide to start with a mixture made of 20 ml of vinegar and one teaspoon of baking soda.

 

This will give them a base reading against which they can compare their other results.

 

What is the base reading in an experiment known as?

Starting Point

Base Reading

Prediction

Control

They decided to use a teaspoon to measure out the baking soda and a special measuring glass to measure out the vinegar, adding each quantity together and measuring how high up the glass the fizz went.

 

Then they planned to write down their results, tip the finished mixture away, wash out the glass and try the next one.

 

Finish the sentence below:

Tammy, Alfie and Jacob have made a...

Investigation

Conclusion

Plan

Report

The team then add different amounts of the two chemicals together.

 

They measure how fizzy it gets, writing their results down as they go.

 

 

Measuring spoons

Measuring teaspoons

 

Here's what happened:

 

Amount of Baking Soda/tsp Amount of Vinegar/ml Height of Fizz/ml
     
1/4 20 48
1/2 20 67
1 20 81
1 1/2 20 79
2 20  
2 1/2 20 78
3 20 80

 

In their excitement, cracking on with the experiment, they forgot to write down the fizz result for 2 tsp of baking soda - can you suggest what this missing result might have been?

Investigation

Conclusion

Plan

Report

From this set of results (table repeated below) what do you think is the best proportion of baking soda to vinegar to give maximum fizz with the least amount of chemicals?

 

 

Amount of Baking Soda/tsp Amount of Vinegar/ml Height of Fizz/ml
     
1/4 20 48
1/2 20 67
1 20 81
1 1/2 20 79
2 20  
2 1/2 20 78
3 20 80

 

 

¼:20

½:20

1:20

1½:20

2:20

Next they decided to double the amount of vinegar (to 40 ml), but leave the amounts of baking soda the same as before.

 

Here's what they discovered:

 

Amount of Baking soda/tsp Amount of Vinegar/ml Height of Fizz/ml
     
1/4 40 48
1/2 40 67
1 40 81
1 1/2 40 102
2 40 115
2 1/2 40 112
3 40 115

 

Here are two of their experimental results picked out from their two trials with different amounts of vinegar:

 

Amount of Baking Soda/tsp Height of Fizz/20 ml of Vinegar Height of Fizz/40 ml of Vinegar
     
1/2 67 67
3 80 115

 

Work out the change in the height of the fizz for both of these results.

 Difference in Fizz Height (ml) between 20 ml & 40 ml of Vinegar
¼ tsp baking soda
3 tsp baking soda

The team of young scientists decide that the best way to present their data is by drawing a graph of the results - here it is below:

 

8572 Q8

(Mixture #1 uses 1/4 tsp of soda, #2 uses 1/2 tsp and so on up to #8 which uses 3 tsp of soda, as in their experiment)

 

The three investigators come up with some ideas of what's going on.

 

Use the graph that they've drawn to decide which two of their explanations you agree with.

The more soda we added, the more it fizzed

The more vinegar we added, the more it fizzed

When the vinegar was used up, it stopped fizzing

When the soda was used up, it stopped fizzing

Here is the volcano, ready for the baking soda and vinegar mixture, so that it can erupt!

 

Use this chart of results to decide what proportions of baking soda to vinegar you would mix together to give the best eruption with the least waste.

 

Amount of Baking Soda/tsp Amount of Vinegar/ml Height of Fizz/ml
     
1/4 40 48
1/2 40 67
1 40 81
1 1/2 40 102
2 40 115
2 1/2 40 112
3 40 115

 

The more soda we added, the more it fizzed

The more vinegar we added, the more it fizzed

When the vinegar was used up, it stopped fizzing

When the soda was used up, it stopped fizzing

Carbon Dioxide (CO2) is the gas that is released in this reaction.

 

Complete this sentence, using two words, to show the effect that CO2 is having on our world.

The more soda we added, the more it fizzed

The more vinegar we added, the more it fizzed

When the vinegar was used up, it stopped fizzing

When the soda was used up, it stopped fizzing

  • Question 1

Baking soda  Vinegar

 

When the young investigators mix the white powder, baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) with the liquid vinegar, the two chemicals react together in an exciting, fizzy way, releasing the gas carbon dioxide (CO2).

 

What sort of reaction is this?

CORRECT ANSWER
Irreversible
EDDIE SAYS
In some changes, you can get back what you started with, this is a reversible experiment. When you dissolve salt in water, it's possible to extract the salt again. However, many changes where substances react together, like frying an egg, are irreversible - you cannot get back what you started with.
  • Question 2

The first problem the team of scientists face is how to measure how 'fizzy' their mixture is.

 

"We could weigh it and see how much lighter it gets," suggests Alfie.

 

"How about trying to fill a balloon with the carbon dioxide and seeing how big it gets," is what Jacob thinks.

 

"Why don't we do the reaction in a glass where we can measure how high the fizzy mixture rises," is Tammy's idea.

 

The team like Tammy's idea best, but aren't sure if there's a glass with measurements up the side. 

 

Can you help them with what this piece of apparatus is called?

It's written in the form of an anagram: GERANIUMS NICERDLY

CORRECT ANSWER
measuring cylinder
EDDIE SAYS
Did you get that? A measuring cylinder is a really useful piece of kit: a glass or plastic tube with markings up the side. They give the volume of liquid in ml.
  • Question 3

The three young scientists decide to start with a mixture made of 20 ml of vinegar and one teaspoon of baking soda.

 

This will give them a base reading against which they can compare their other results.

 

What is the base reading in an experiment known as?

CORRECT ANSWER
Control
EDDIE SAYS
In fact, a control is a really important part of many scientific investigations. It is the measurement that is used to compare the other results with. Without a control you cannot tell whether or not there's any difference. To check whether new "Mega-Soaker" kitchen towel is really more absorbent than ordinary kitchen towel, you have to do a control test first. Using the ordinary type to get your base reading and to compare against the Mega-Soaker's ability to absorb your spilt milk! Does that make sense?
  • Question 4

They decided to use a teaspoon to measure out the baking soda and a special measuring glass to measure out the vinegar, adding each quantity together and measuring how high up the glass the fizz went.

 

Then they planned to write down their results, tip the finished mixture away, wash out the glass and try the next one.

 

Finish the sentence below:

Tammy, Alfie and Jacob have made a...

CORRECT ANSWER
Plan
EDDIE SAYS
This is the team's plan: add the chemicals together, measure the fizz, clean out the cylinder and repeat the process with the next mixture. Mind you, the plan may have to change when you get down to it as sometimes things happen that you didn't expect. That's science for you, unpredictable at times!
  • Question 5

The team then add different amounts of the two chemicals together.

 

They measure how fizzy it gets, writing their results down as they go.

 

 

Measuring spoons

Measuring teaspoons

 

Here's what happened:

 

Amount of Baking Soda/tsp Amount of Vinegar/ml Height of Fizz/ml
     
1/4 20 48
1/2 20 67
1 20 81
1 1/2 20 79
2 20  
2 1/2 20 78
3 20 80

 

In their excitement, cracking on with the experiment, they forgot to write down the fizz result for 2 tsp of baking soda - can you suggest what this missing result might have been?

CORRECT ANSWER
EDDIE SAYS
Have you looked at what's going on here, in their results? Can you see that after 1 teaspoonful of baking soda is added, adding more doesn't make any significant difference to the height that the fizzy reaction reaches? That means that the results for 1/2/3 teaspoons, etc. are going to be pretty much the same. You'll learn that in any reaction between two chemicals, when one of them "runs out", or is used up, the reaction stops. Here there isn't enough vinegar for more than 1 teaspoonful of baking soda to react with. That's why there's no more fizz, once the vinegar has all reacted. Got that? This question requires extra thought.
  • Question 6

From this set of results (table repeated below) what do you think is the best proportion of baking soda to vinegar to give maximum fizz with the least amount of chemicals?

 

 

Amount of Baking Soda/tsp Amount of Vinegar/ml Height of Fizz/ml
     
1/4 20 48
1/2 20 67
1 20 81
1 1/2 20 79
2 20  
2 1/2 20 78
3 20 80

 

 

CORRECT ANSWER
1:20
EDDIE SAYS
If you look at the results, can you see that the amount of fizz is about the same for 1 tsp upwards? That means that 1 tsp of baking soda is the maximum amount that 20 ml of vinegar can react with. Adding more baking soda doesn't give more fizz, and is therefore a waste of chemicals. Best amount, then, is 1 tsp of baking soda to 20 ml of vinegar (1:20).
  • Question 7

Next they decided to double the amount of vinegar (to 40 ml), but leave the amounts of baking soda the same as before.

 

Here's what they discovered:

 

Amount of Baking soda/tsp Amount of Vinegar/ml Height of Fizz/ml
     
1/4 40 48
1/2 40 67
1 40 81
1 1/2 40 102
2 40 115
2 1/2 40 112
3 40 115

 

Here are two of their experimental results picked out from their two trials with different amounts of vinegar:

 

Amount of Baking Soda/tsp Height of Fizz/20 ml of Vinegar Height of Fizz/40 ml of Vinegar
     
1/2 67 67
3 80 115

 

Work out the change in the height of the fizz for both of these results.

CORRECT ANSWER
 Difference in Fizz Height (ml) between 20 ml & 40 ml of Vinegar
¼ tsp baking soda
3 tsp baking soda
EDDIE SAYS
How did you get on? For ¼ tsp of baking soda, the results are 67 ml of fizz for both amounts of vinegar, so 67 - 67 = 0. For 3 tsp of soda the results are 115 - 80 = 35. That means that the amount of fizz has increased by 35 ml when the amount of vinegar was doubled.
  • Question 8

The team of young scientists decide that the best way to present their data is by drawing a graph of the results - here it is below:

 

8572 Q8

(Mixture #1 uses 1/4 tsp of soda, #2 uses 1/2 tsp and so on up to #8 which uses 3 tsp of soda, as in their experiment)

 

The three investigators come up with some ideas of what's going on.

 

Use the graph that they've drawn to decide which two of their explanations you agree with.

CORRECT ANSWER
When the vinegar was used up, it stopped fizzing
When the soda was used up, it stopped fizzing
EDDIE SAYS
The first two explanations cannot be right. Look at the graph: can you see that the lines they plotted are more-or-less level from mixture 5 onward? This means that adding more chemical doesn't produce a fizzier mixture beyond a certain point. However, it also means that once one of the chemicals is used up, the fizzing reaction stops. The results suggest that 20 ml of vinegar can react with no more than 1 tsp of baking soda. Also that 40 ml of vinegar can react with 2 tsp of soda, but no more. Remember: once one of the two chemicals (or reactants) in a reaction runs out, the reaction stops. It has to, as there's none left.
  • Question 9

Here is the volcano, ready for the baking soda and vinegar mixture, so that it can erupt!

 

Use this chart of results to decide what proportions of baking soda to vinegar you would mix together to give the best eruption with the least waste.

 

Amount of Baking Soda/tsp Amount of Vinegar/ml Height of Fizz/ml
     
1/4 40 48
1/2 40 67
1 40 81
1 1/2 40 102
2 40 115
2 1/2 40 112
3 40 115

 

CORRECT ANSWER
EDDIE SAYS
Look at the results for the height of fizz. Can you see that 115 ml is the best result? So, that's with 40 ml vinegar. 2 or 3 tsp of soda though? Clearly, 2 teaspoons is best - same result, less waste!
  • Question 10

Carbon Dioxide (CO2) is the gas that is released in this reaction.

 

Complete this sentence, using two words, to show the effect that CO2 is having on our world.

CORRECT ANSWER
EDDIE SAYS
The evidence is super strong now. There is a clear link between the increase of

CO2 in our atmosphere and serious changes to our environment: rising sea levels, loss of coral reefs, serious hurricanes, fires out of control, glaciers melting. If this concerns you, go and find out why this is happening and how you can help to slow down the changes. That's another activity ticked off, fantastic work!

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