How to Make an Experiment With Corn Syrup

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Corn syrup is a form of liquid sugar derived from corn. It is an invert sugar, meaning that it doesn't crystallize. As a result, corn syrup is often a part of recipes for sweets like caramel, chocolate sauce and ice cream, because it will prevent sugar crystals from forming as the product cools. Because corn syrup is a cheap, everyday ingredient and yet has some very interesting properties, it's a great tool in science experiments for kids.

Density Experiment

    Set out three cups. Pour 1 cup of water into the first, 1 cup of corn syrup into the second and 1 cup of vegetable oil into the third. Add a few drops of food coloring to the water to make it easier to see.

    Drop a grape into each cup. Make a note of which grapes sink and which float. Repeat the experiment with a small plastic block and a nickel.

    Determine which liquid is the most dense and which is the least dense, based on your findings. Pour the three containers of liquid into a larger container. They will separate into layers according to density, and you will be able to tell if your prediction was correct.

Osmosis Experiment

    Place two eggs in a large container and cover them with white vinegar. Cover the container and leave it in the fridge for 24 hours. The vinegar will eat away the shell of the egg, leaving a thin, permeable membrane around the yolk and white.

    Remove the eggs from the vinegar with a large spoon. Place one in a small container of water and another in a small container of corn syrup. Refrigerate the eggs for 24 hours.

    Observe how the eggs have changed. Because water can move through the egg membrane and sugar cannot, water will have moved out of the egg and into the corn syrup to create an equilibrium between the water inside and outside of the egg.

    Remove the shrunken egg from the corn syrup and leave it in the refrigerator in a container of water for 24 hours. It should return to its previous state.

Mucous Experiment

    Add 3 tsp. powdered gelatin to 1/2 cup of boiling water. Let it soften, then stir it with a fork.

    Stir in 1/4 cup of corn syrup. Add more water, if necessary, to create a mucous-like consistency.

    Stir the mixture with the fork and observe the long, sticky protein strands that form. These sticky, stretchy strands of mucous are similar to snot, which helps protect your respiratory system from pollen, dust and other irritants.

References

About the Author

Mara Shannon is a writer whose work appears on various websites. Shannon also blogs about gaming and literature. Shannon holds a Bachelor of Arts in music with a focus on performance.

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