FREE shipping on orders $45 and over!
snow globe logo | Yellow Scope



snow globe | Yellow ScopeDid you know that the snow globe was invented by accident?

Around 1900, an Austrian man named Erwin Perzy was trying to build a better light source to use in surgeries, but he ended up with a very different invention instead - a beautiful, handmade snow globe!

Have you ever wanted to make your own snow globe? Well, this month's 20 Minute Lab will show you how, with a little help from the concept of viscosity!

Before we start, you may want to think about what kind of things you want in your snow globe. A winter scene is very common - hence the snow! But you could also make an underwater scene, a zoo scene, or something else - let your imagine run wild! And of course, you can always create more than one!

What You'll Need

  • snow globe supplies | Yellow Scopeempty, clear jar with a screw-top lid
  • small toys and decorations
  • glue (non water-based like super glue or epoxy)
  • glycerin 
  • white or colored glitter
  • chop stick or long spoon
  • water

NOTE: This image shows some different ideas for jars, glitter and toys. Adjust to your taste!

WARNING: If you use epoxy or superglue, make sure to ask an adult for help!

The toys and items you choose should be able to stay in water for a long time without deteriorating (falling apart!). Plastic or ceramic items work great. And be aware that dyes from some toys may color the water. If you're not sure about your items, you could test them out first by leaving them in a bowl of water for a day or so before you make the globe. Avoid metal, as it will rust, and wood, as it may discolor the water.

Let's Get Started!

  1. toys glued for snow globes | Yellow ScopePlace the jar lid top down on a flat table or counter. Make sure to protect your work surface by lining it with paper or a placemat to catch any spilled glue.
  2. Set your toys/decorations in the jar lid in an arrangement that you like. Check to make sure that the jar will fit over the items. (Nothing should stick out beyond the lid borders).
  3. Carefully glue your items to the lid. (Ask an adult for help if you are using epoxy or superglue.)
  4. Set the jar lid aside to dry.
  5. Now, fill the jar one third of the way with glycerin.
  6. Add a small amount of glitter.
  7. Using a chopstick or spoon, mix the glitter into the glycerin. (Observe what happens to the glitter.)snow globe mixes | Yellow Scope
  8. Add water to jar, so it is almost to the top. Stir again. Add more glitter if you like.
  9. Now add water to fill the jar completely - all the way to the very top.
  10. Check the lid to make sure the glue has completely dried and your items are stuck solidly in place.
  11. Working over the sink or a tray, turn your decorated lid over and slowly screw it into place onto the jar.
  12. The water will spill a bit over the sides, but that's good, it will help to keep bubbles out of the finished snow globe.
  13. Feel free to add more decorations, like ribbons, to the jar lid.

finished snow globes | Yellow Scope


What's going on?

glycerin | Yellow ScopeWhat makes the glitter (snow) fall slowly through the globe? How things flow has to do with viscosity. Viscosity is a measure of how "thick" a liquid is.

Water has a low viscosity, meaning it is a rather "thin" liquid. In other words, glitter moves around very easily when you stir it in water! But glycerin, as you noticed in the experiment, is thicker; it has a higher viscosity. You likely noticed that, even when vigorously stirred, the glitter barely moved in the glycerin!

Adding water to the glycerin creates a liquid with a medium amount of viscosity. That way the glitter falls slowly, more like snow, rather than staying suspended for hours (as it would if you only used glycerin without any water)!

honey | Yellow ScopeCan you think of other viscous fluids? How about molasses or honey? Those are pretty thick!

Glycerin is a nice choice for snow globes because it is clear. It's also water soluble, meaning it mixes well with water, instead of remaining separate.

Glycerin is also only a little bit more dense than water, again making it so they mix well together. Density refers to how much stuff can be packed into a given space. To learn more about density, check out the 20 Minute Lab: Rainbow in a Jar.


Let us know what you did. Share your photos and results with us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or send us an email to We love getting your messages!

For more exciting experiments, check out our Yellow Scope Science Kits on the Shop tab of our website!

20 Minute Labs ghosts logo | Yellow Scope


trick or treat | Yellow ScopeHalloween is just around the corner - do you have your costume ready yet? Is your house decorated?

How about adding some spooky sound effects using science?! 

In this month's 20 Minute Lab, we'll experiment with  the concepts of motion and vibration to make some ghost balloons that howl in the night!

Greet your trick-or-treaters with a ghostly scream, or just try it our for fun at home! The more the merrier, so gather your siblings and friends together to make a whole fright of howling ghosts!

Our instructions call for white or clear balloons to make howling ghosts, but feel free to be creative. Maybe you'd prefer to make howling pumpkins with orange balloons, or screaming monsters with green or purple balloons...? There's no limit with your imagination!


  • ghost supplies | Yellow Scopepermanent black marker, like a Sharpie
  • 2 white balloons 
  • 1 penny (a marble works too)
  • 1 hex nut (Check your tool box, or you can buy one at the hardware store for a couple of cents!)
  • For bonus fun: Use a 36" balloon and a pump to blow it up.


    1. Use the black marker to draw ghost faces on both balloons. (You can do this before or after blowing up the balloons - before will give you a stretchy look.)
    2. hex nut in balloon | Yellow ScopePut the penny inside of one balloon.
    3. Put the hex nut inside the other balloon.
    4. Blow up both balloons and tie them off (or just hold them closed if you don't want to commit yet!).
    5. With a good grip on the balloon with a penny, make a quick circling motion so the penny moves around in a circle inside the balloon. What does it sound like?
    6. Now do the same to the balloon with the hex nut. What does it sound like?

    Take the experiment further by making different sized balloons, using multiple hex nuts, or even using a giant 36" balloon! What sound does that make?


    tetherball | Yellow ScopeWhy does the hex nut make the howling sound, while penny is quiet? Well, there's a couple things going on here.

    First off is the concept of force. A force causes a push or a pull. Did you notice that the penny spun and spun for a long time?

    That's because a centripetal force was acting on it. A centripetal force keeps objects moving in a circular path. This is the same force that keeps a roller coaster on the track through an upside down loop and also keeps a tether ball circling around the post!

    Because of the shape of the balloon, the penny goes in a circle. If you were to make the balloon disappear, the penny would fly off in one direction. Just like if you cut the cord of a spinning yo-yo, the toy would fly off in a straight line!

    Because of the penny's smooth, rounded sides, it travels across the material of the balloon without much resistance, or friction. The only reason it eventually winds down to a stop is because a different force - gravity - slowly pulls it down and out of its spin.

    hex nut | Yellow ScopeThe hex nut also moves in a circular path due to centripetal force. However, the nut has six flat sides. These sides bounce along the balloon's surface, creating a little bit of friction, but also lots of vibrations! These vibrations create sound waves, which are the source of that howling sound!

    What happens if the hex nut speeds up in its circling? Try it! You may notice that it gets much louder and higher pitched. What else could you try putting into the balloon? What results do you get?


    Let us know how your experiments turned out! Share your photos and results with us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or send us an email to We love getting your messages!

    For more exciting experiments, check out our Yellow Scope science kits on the Shop tab of our website!

    20 Minute Labs rainbow logo | Yellow Scope


    rainbow | Yellow ScopeEverybody loves seeing a rainbow outside, but sometimes it goes away too soon. How about capturing a rainbow on a piece of paper so you can admire it anytime?

    The beautiful array of colors is a wonder - it may seem like magic, but we can understand rainbows through science!

    Put simply, rainbows occur when white light from the sun bounces off raindrops at a particular angle and splits into all the colors we can see.

    In this month's 20 Minute Lab, we'll make a form of rainbow and attach it to shapes of paper using just water and nail polish!


    rainbow paper supplies | Yellow Scope
    • Dark-colored construction paper
    • Dark-colored plate or bowl
    • Water
    • Clear nail polish
    • Cloth napkin
    NOTE: Just like when painting your nails, make sure to work in a well-ventilated area and to always recap the nail polish right after use, as the fumes are not healthy to breathe in!


      1. Cut out some fun shapes from the construction paper. The shapes should be small enough to fit into your bowl or plate easily. We recommend making some regular rectangles to practice with first, then try some special shapes once you get the hang of the process.
      2. rainbow paper bowl | Yellow ScopeAdd water to the bowl.
      3. Open the clear nail polish and hover the brush over the bowl of water, letting a drop fall into it. Recap the nail polish.
      4. Watch as the polish spreads out into a film on the water! (This is easier to see in a dark-colored plate or bowl)
      5. Quickly dip your paper shape into the bowl, letting the layer of polish cover it. Then take the paper back out again and remove any excess nail polish film from the sides. This takes some practice! Here's a visual of this step:

      6. rainbow paper drying | Yellow ScopePlace the shape on a napkin to dry.
      7. Remove the remaining film from the water (you can just wipe it off on the towel or the edge of the bowl).
      8. Repeat the process for each shape!  Try to find each of the colors of the rainbow on your shape: red, orange, yellow, green, light blue and dark blue!




      rainbow paper | Yellow ScopeWhat made this rainbow effect on the paper? When the drop of nail polish fell into the water, it spread out and made a thin film.

      Light from the sun is white, which is all the colors of the rainbow mixed together. When sunlight hits the layer of film, some rays bounce off the surface while others go through the film, reflect off the bottom, then bounce back out.

      As waves of light travel through the film, they interfere with the waves that bounce off the surface. Since bouncing off the bottom takes a little longer, those waves get out of sync with the ones bouncing off the surface. 

      interference | Yellow Scope blog Some of the waves cancel each other out (destructive interference) while others become stronger (constructive interference).

      Because of destructive and constructive interference, some of the colors in the sun's white light cancel out and others remain visible and can be seen on your shape!  

      oil | Yellow ScopeHave you ever been in a parking lot and seen rainbows on the pavement? That's from oil - and the effect is the same as what you just did with nail polish and paper!

      The same thing happens on the film on a soap bubble - at just the right angle, you can see the rainbow effect.


      Let us know how your experiments turned out! Share your photos and results with us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or send us an email to We love getting your messages!

      For more exciting experiments, check out our Yellow Scope science kits on the Shop tab of our website!


      20 Minute Labs geodes logo | Yellow Scope


      geode | Yellow Scope blog

      Have you ever seen a geode? On the outside, it looks like a plain old, round rock. But when you break it open, inside is a lining of beautiful crystals!

      Geodes are found all over the world, usually in deserts. If you live in any of the southwest or midwestern states, you might be able to find them out in nature!

      You can also find them for sale at toy and rock shops to take home and break open yourself.

      Geodes start out as tree roots, mud balls, or volcanic bubbles inside of sedimentary rock. Over many millions of years, the outer, rounded shell hardens, but the inside remains hollow.

      A liquid containing dissolved minerals gathers on the inner walls of the geode. Over time, these minerals form crystals!

      geode | Yellow Scope blogIn this experiment, you can create some geode-like crystals using eggshells and a few items from home. The science is similar to how a real geode is made, but on a shorter time scale - 20 minutes instead of millions of years! 

      NOTE: Setting up the lab will only take about 20 minutes, but once you're done you'll have to wait overnight to see the full results.


      What You'll Need

      • egg geode supplies | Yellow Scope blog3 eggshell halves
      • measuring cup
      • 4 cups of water
      • pot
      • 1 3/4 cups borax
      • spoon
      • 3 glasses with lids
      • food coloring
      WARNING: Be careful when working with borax. Work in a well-ventilated area; do not breath in the fumes and as with all science experiments - don't taste or eat anything! 

        Let's Get Started!

        1. eggshells | Yellow ScopeCollect eggshell halves. You can either hard-boil eggs and peel off the shells or crack open raw eggs and wash and dry the shells before using.
        2. With an adult's help, bring four cups of water to a boil in a pot on the stove.
        3. Remove the pot from the heat and SLOWLY stir in 1 3/4 cups borax until completely dissolved. (NOTE: Avoid splashing; do not inhale fumes; turn on air vent and/or open windows.)
        4. Let the solution cool for about 15 minutes.
        5. To each of the three glasses, add about 10 drops of food coloring. We found that lighter colors, like yellow, work well.
        6. egg geode in glasses | Yellow Scope blogCarefully pour  the borax solution into the three glasses so there is about the same amount in each one. The food coloring should easily go into solution. 
        7. Now add an eggshell to each glass, allowing it to sink to the bottom. Use a spoon to carefully arrange the shell so it isn't touching the sides of the glass to prevent sticking.
        8. Cover each glass with a lid. (This will prevent borax fumes from escaping.)
        9. Leave the glasses undisturbed overnight.
        10. The next day, carefully then scoop out the eggshell with a spoon. It will likely be stuck to the bottom of the glass, so you may have to use a bit of pressure to release it.
        11. Place on a plate or paper towel to dry. Enjoy your geode!

        egg geodes | Yellow Scope

        WHAT'S GOING ON?

        supersaturated solution diagram | Yellow ScopeYou probably noticed that the borax powder dissolved easily in the hot water. More borax will dissolve in hot water than in cold water. Hot water molecules move around a lot more and there is more space between the molecules. So there is more space to hold the borax. This type of solution is called a supersaturated solution. The water can not hold any more borax - it's completely stuffed!

        When the solution cooled overnight, the water molecules slowed down and got closer together. There was no more room for the borax, so it could no longer remain dissolved. The borax particles came out of solution and settled on the eggshells, in the form of crystals!

        What is a Crystal?

        When molecules like borax (a mineral salt) come together in a very organized, patterned way, a crystal is formed. The size and shape of the crystals depends on how fast the solution cools. When solutions cool fast, smaller crystals are formed because they have less time to organize. Slow-cooling solutions tend to form larger crystals. You might want to repeat the experiment again, but this time, try putting the glasses into the refrigerator overnight. What do you think will happen to the size of the crystals?  

        egg geodes | Yellow Scope

        SHARE WITH US!

        Let us know how your experiments turned out! Share your photos and results with us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or send us an email to We love getting your messages!

        For more exciting experiments, check out our Yellow Scope science kits on the Shop tab of our website!


        ice cube necklace logo | Yellow Scope



        drink | Yellow ScopeWith summer just around the corner, we're looking forward to enjoying icy drinks in the sun. Are you?

        In this month's 20 Minute Lab,we'll make an ice cube necklace with just a few items from around the house!

        You might think that to make an ice cube necklace, you could just lay a string in an ice cube tray, fill it with water, and then freeze it. Well, that would be one way to do it!

        But we’re going to use science to add the string AFTER the ice cubes have frozen! How could that work? Not by tying a knot around each one…. We’ll attach the string to the ice cubes using the power of salt!

        Ready? Let’s do science!

        ice cube necklace supplies | Yellow Scope

        What You'll Need

        • bowl
        • water
        • ice cubes (3-5)
        • fine table salt
        • piece of string or thread about 18 inches long

        Let's Get Started!

        1. Fill your bowl with water - almost to the top.

        2. Add your ice cubes. (You'll notice they float in the water.)

        3. Arrange the ice cubes so they are close together or touching.

        4. ice cube string | Yellow ScopeLay the string over the top of each ice cube (lengthwise works best).

        5. Now pour some salt in a small bowl.

        6. Use your fingers to sprinkle the salt over the string on top of each ice cube. You’ll need to use about ½ teaspoon for each ice cube. (Note: Too much salt or too little salt can prevent the experiment from working, so you may need to experiment a bit to get the amount just right!)

        7. ice cube salt | Yellow ScopeLet the salt sit on top of string and ice for about 30 seconds.

        8. Now pick up the string from both ends and watch the ice cubes come along!

        9. Congratulations! You made an ice cube necklace!

         ice cube necklace vertical | Yellow Scope

        WHAT'S GOING ON?

        How did the string become attached to the ice cubes? It's all in the salt. Adding salt to water decreases its freezing point. Normally, water freezes at 32°F – or 0˚ Celcius– this this is called the freezing point.

        But when salt is added, water no longer freezes at 32˚F - it doesn’t freeze until the temperature gets colder. The more salt mixed with water, the lower the freezing point!

        ice cube necklace | Yellow Scope

        In this experiment, when you added the salt to the string over the ice cubes, it melted that area of the ice cube, creating a little pool of water.

        As the ice melted, the water diluted the salt, which made it less able to lower the freezing point. The freezing point increased, and the ice cube refroze. This time the water froze over the string, trapping the string in the ice cube. So, when you lifted the string out of the bowl, the ice cubes held on and came along!

        icy roads | Yellow Scope

        If you live in a place where you get a lot snow and ice in the winter, you have likely seen salt used in this way to keep the roads safe! Big trucks will spread salt on the roads to prevent water from freezing into ice. This helps prevent cars from slipping and sliding and make the roads safer!


        Do you think anything else might lower the freezing point of water? Try some other things like sugar, pepper, or baking soda and see what happens!

        SHARE WITH US!

        Let us know how your experiments turned out! Share your photos and results with us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or send us an email to We love getting your messages!

        For more exciting experiments, check out our Yellow Scope science kits on the Shop tab of our website!

        naked egg logo | Yellow Scope


        MAKE A NAKED EGG?!

        boiled egg | Yellow ScopeWith Easter right around the corner, you may be boiling and dying eggs.

        Have you ever eaten a hard-boiled egg? They're pretty delicious, and making a boiled egg is kind of a neat experiment in itself. When it's boiled, you can peel off the shell and the egg inside keeps its shape!

        But did you know that you can make an egg shell disappear - while the egg inside keeps its shape - with no cooking involved?

        In this week's 20 Minute Lab, we'll make a naked egg using a few things from around the house.

        clock | YEllow ScopeBonus Experiment! We'll also go a bit further and change our naked egg's shape! We'll make it bigger and smaller by changing the solutions the eggs are soaked in. Remember though, these eggs aren't for eating - they would taste disgusting! Remember, we never eat our science experiments! ;)

        Just an FYI: The hands-on time involved in these experiments is very short, but there's a lot of waiting time. Be prepared for the science to work its magic overnight while you sleep! 

        What You'll Need

        • naked egg supplies | Yellow Scope2 small, wide-mouthed glasses
        • 2 eggs (fresh uncooked eggs in their shells)
        • about 4 cups white vinegar
        • 2 spoons
        • 2 cups water
        • food coloring (optional)
        • 2 cups corn syrup

        Let's Get Started!

        Naked Egg

        1. Place one egg in each glass. 
        2. eggs in vinegar | Yellow ScopePour the vinegar into each glass, making sure to cover the egg by about half an inch.
        3. To prevent the eggs from floating up, place a spoon over them. Note: You can cover the glasses to reduce the vinegar smell!
        4. Leave the glasses undisturbed for about 24 hours.
        5. Remove the eggs and rinse them under running water.
        6. Gently rub the eggs until the shell is completely gone. Be careful, the eggs will be slippery!
        egg dissolved shell | Yellow Scope 


        If your egg's shell is still hard after 24 hours, you may need to leave it for another day...

        WHAT'S GOING ON?

        What do you see? Where did the shell go? Does your egg feel rubbery and bouncy? How did that happen?

        egg bubbles | Yellow Scope

        The shell of an egg is made of calcium carbonate. Vinegar contains acetic acid.

        When the acetic acid in the vinegar comes in contact with the calcium carbonate in the egg shell, a chemical reaction happens, which dissolves the egg shell!

        You might have noticed that bubbles formed around your egg after you poured in the vinegar. The chemical reaction produces carbon dioxide gas, which are the bubbles you see.

        egg diagram | Yellow ScopeSo that explains why the shell disappeared, but what keeps the egg from oozing everywhere?

        Just under the eggshell is another type of covering called a membrane. A membrane is sort of like a thin skin. The vinegar doesn't affect the membrane, so it remains intact and holds the egg together. Pretty cool, right?


        Big Egg, Small Egg

        1. naked egg in water | Yellow Scope 20 Minute LabsPour the vinegar out of the glasses and rinse them out.
        2. Place one naked egg in each glass.
        3. Add water to one of the glasses so it just covers the egg. (You can also add some food coloring to this glass to keep track of which one is water.)
        4. To the other glass, add corn syrup. (Note: The egg will float, but don't worry, that's OK. The syrup is denser than the egg!)
        5. Leave the experiment for another 24 hours.
        6. Remove the two eggs and compare sizes. Which egg is bigger?
        7. For fun, pierce the big egg with a needle (over the sink) and watch a thin stream of liquid squirt out of the hole!
        eggs in water and corn syrup | Yellow Scope 20 Minute Labs

        WHAT'S GOING ON?

        Did your egg in the water get big? Did your egg in the corn syrup get small?
        Wow! Why did that happen?

        semipermeable membrane | Yellow ScopeWell, first, let's talk about that skin-like membrane of the egg. This thin layer actually has tiny holes in it, which allow for certain things to move in or out. 

        Picture a fence with holes in it. You might be able to push a tennis ball through, but a basketball wouldn't fit.

        In a similar way, small water molecules can move through the egg's membrane, but the larger sugar molecules in the corn syrup cannot fit through the tiny holes. 

        egg in water | Yellow ScopeThis helps explain why the egg in the plain water glass grew larger. The concentration of water is higher in the glass than inside the egg. This means that water molecules move from the glass through the membrane into the egg - making it bigger! 

        In the corn syrup glass, the concentration of water is higher inside the egg than in the corn syrup. This means that the water molecules move out of the egg, through the membrane, into the corn syrup. And the egg shrinks!

        egg size comparison | Yellow Scope 20 Minute Labs

        SHARE WITH US!

        Let us know how your experiments turned out! Share your photos and results with us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or send us an email to We love getting your messages!

        For more exciting experiments, check out our Yellow Scope science kits on the Shop tab of our website!

        balloon logo 20 minute labs | Yellow Scope



        Blowing up balloons is a fun way to celebrate a party or just add color to a room! But what if you could make a balloon blow itself up - inside a bottle?! 

        In this week's 20 Minute Lab we'll do just that by using a few things from around the house.

        First, try just blowing up a balloon in a bottle yourself. Place the larger, closed-end of the balloon into the bottle and attach the open-end of the balloon to the mouth of the bottle (like in the photo).

        Now try blowing up the balloon by breathing into it. You can't! The bottle's already full of air and there's no room for any more!

        But you can cheat using science. All you have to do is create a pressure change inside the bottle. Ready to try? Let's collect some everyday items and get started!

        balloon bottle supplies | 20 Minute LabsWhat You'll Need

        • 1 clear glass bottle with a narrow neck
        • 1 balloon (or more, as you may want to do this multiple times. New balloons work best!)
        • water
        • tablespoon
        • hot pads

        Let's Get Started!

        1. Pour about a tablespoon of water into the bottle. 
        2. Place the bottle in the microwave and heat for 1 minute until the water boils.
          microwave 20 minute labs | Yellow ScopeNOTE: If your bottle is too tall for the microwave, you can set it tilted on its side in a microwave-safe bowl!
        3. Ask an adult to carefully remove the hot bottle using hot pads and then hold it steady for you on a table or counter.
        4. Quickly stretch the opening of the balloon over the mouth of the bottle. Keep the large end of the balloon pointing up and centered over the mouth.
        5. Watch what happens! (Check out the video below to see how the experiment worked for us!)



        ballon troubleshooting | Yellow ScopeIf your balloon doesn't get sucked into the bottle, you may not have heated it enough. Make sure the water is boiling. It can also take some time for the bottle to cool. We transferred ours outside so the winter air would cool the bottle faster!

        If the balloon sticks to itself instead of getting pulled into the bottle, you may need to pull the larger end up to free it from itself.

        WHAT'S GOING ON?

        Here's what you likely saw:

        At first, the balloon moved around a bit, then collapsed. Suddenly the balloon got sucked into the bottle and turned inside out! Then the balloon started to expand and inflate inside the bottle.

        Wow! Why did that happen?

        water phases | Yellow ScopeHeating the water in the microwave caused the water to boil. You probably remember that water changes form depending on temperature. When water freezes, it turns to ice; room temperature water is liquid; and when water boils it turn into a gas. This gas or steam is also called water vapor. 

        As the water boiled and turned to vapor inside the bottle, its pressure increased. This increase in pressure pushed the air out of the bottle. At this point, you attached the balloon to the mouth of the bottle.

        As the water in the bottle started to cool, the vapor turned back to a liquid. This lowered the pressure inside the bottle, making the air outside want to move into the bottle.

        But the balloon was in the way! First, the air inside the balloon was sucked into the bottle. This created a vacuum and caused the balloon to collapse, get pulled into the bottle, and invert. Next, air from the room pushed into the inside-out balloon, stretching it out and inflating it! 

        SHARE WITH US!

        Let us know what you did. Share your photos and results with us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or send us an email to We love getting your messages!

        For more exciting experiments, check out our Yellow Scope Science Kits on the Shop tab of our website!

        20 minute labs snowman dough logo | Yellow Scope



        snowman | Yellow ScopeEverybody loves building a snowman (or a snowwoman, or snowgirl)! But maybe there's no snow where you live, or maybe you just want to stay warm while still having fun with sculpting.

        Well, this week's 20 Minute Lab is just for you!

        We'll use common household items to make a miniature winter wonderland, decorated however you like. Then, we'll use a chemical reaction to "melt" our creations, as though spring were coming!

        This experiment would be a great way to show the snowman Olaf, from the movie Frozen, what would happen if he got what he desperately wanted - to hang out in the sunshine - an idea with melting consequences!

        There are TWO different recipes for making Snow Dough, for twice the experimental fun! 

        conditioner | Yellow Scope 20 minute labsSnow Dough Experiment 1: Uses baking soda and hair conditioner. This recipe is a little more crumbly (less like real snow) but is less sticky than the soap recipe and has a smoother look.

        dish soap  | Yellow Scope 20 minute labsSnow Dough Experiment 2: Uses baking soda, salt, and liquid dish soap. This recipe has the texture of real snow (makes that satisfying crunch in your hands), is slightly sticky and 'impressionable' (bumpy look), but the soap can make a lot of bubbles when reacting with vinegar!

        What You'll Need

        • snow dough supplies 1 | Yellow Scope 20 minute labs3 cups baking soda
        • 1/2 cup white hair conditioner
        • 1-5 cups vinegar
        • tray or pan with high sides
        • bowl
        • measuring cup
        • glitter (optional)
        • decorations

        NOTE: this recipe is a little more crumbly (less like real snow) but less sticky than the salt recipe and has a smoother look.

        Let's Get Started!

        1. snow dough mix | Yellow Scope 20 minute labsMix the baking soda and conditioner in the bowl (you can do this by hand!)
        2. Optional: Add the glitter, and mix again.
        3. Transfer the snow to the tray.
        4. Shape your snowman and add decorations! (We used buttons for eyes, twist ties for the nose and mouth, yarn for a scarf, keys for arms, and a Christmas tree hat decoration)
        5. Play as long as you like!
        6. When you're ready to "melt" your creation, add some vinegar (a cup or so at a time) to the measuring cup and SLOWLY pour it over the "snow" (make sure it all stays in the tray to prevent spills!)

        snowman 1 | Yellow Scope 20 minute labs

        What You'll Need

        • snow dough supplies 2 | Yellow Scope 20 minute labs2 cups baking soda
        • 2 tablespoons salt
        • 1 teaspoon dish soap (blue dish soap gives a nice glacier-like color to the 'snow')
        • 1-5 cups vinegar
        • measuring spoons
        • tray or pan with high sides
        • bowl
        • measuring cup
        • decorations

        NOTE: this recipe has the texture of real snow (makes that satisfying crunch in your hands) but is slightly sticky and 'impressionable' (bumpy looking). Also, the soap can make a lot of bubbles when reacting with vinegar!

        Let's Get Started!

        1. snow dough mix 2 | Yellow Scope 20 minute labsMix the baking soda and salt in the bowl (you can do this by hand!).
        2. Add the liquid dish soap, mix again.
        3. Transfer the snow to the tray.
        4. Shape your snowman and add decorations! (We used buttons for eyes, twist ties for nose and mouth, yarn for a scarf, keys for arms, and a Christmas tree hat decoration)
        5. Play as long as you like!
        6. When you're ready to "melt" your creation, add some vinegar (a cup or so at a time) to the measuring cup and SLOWLY pour it over the "snow" (make sure it all stays in the tray to prevent spills!).

        snowman | Yellow Scope 20  minute labs


        What's going on?

        What makes the snowpeople melt when you add the vinegar? Well, they're not actually melting.

        melting snowman | Yellow Scope 20 minute labsUsually when we talk about melting, we mean that we added heat to something and we turned it from a solid to a liquid.

        For example, when you take an ice cube out of the freezer, the room temperature is warmer than the freezer, so the ice cube melts into liquid water. Or when the sun comes out, it adds heat to a snowman and melts it into liquid water.

        With our snow creatures, the vinegar reacts with the baking soda in a chemical reaction. When vinegar and baking soda react, carbon dioxide gas is formed. (To learn more about chemical reactions, check out our Foundation Chemistry kit!)

        melting snowman 2 | Yellow Scope 20 minute labsThose fizzing bubbles you see (as your magical snowland melts) are thousands and thousands of carbon dioxide bubbles.

        If you made the second version of snowman, you'll notice that the soap used in the baking soda mix makes even more bubbles (though they're very small!)

        So you see, we're not really imitating the sun, because the sun melts snow with heat. Instead, we created a chemical reaction that looks like melting, but is actually turning baking soda and vinegar into water and gas!

        SHARE WITH US!

        Let us know what you did. Share your photos and results with us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or send us an email to We love getting your messages!

        For more exciting experiments, check out our Yellow Scope Science Kits on the Shop tab of our website!

        Gift Guide Title Image | Yellow Scope Gift Guide 2018

        Here’s a list of 15 science-themed gifts that have caught our eye this holiday season. From babies to tweens, there’s something for all the girls on your shopping list!

        We've added links for online shopping, but we also encourage you to shop local. Most of these gifts can be found at your favorite neighborhood toy or book shop!



        1. ABC What Can She Be? | Ages 2+
         ABC What Can She Be? | Yellow Scope Gift Guide 2018
        From astronaut to zoologist, this brightly illustrated board book will let her know that it’s never too early to dream big!
        $16.95 | your local bookstore
        2. Caterpillar Gears | Ages 18 months+
        Caterpillar Gears | Yellow Scope Gift Guide 2018
         Toddlers will love turning the interlocking gears to make the caterpillar crawl along the wooden board, all while building fine motor and problem-solving skills!
        3. Bathtub Ball Track | Ages 3+
        Bathtub ball track | Yellow Scope Gift Guide 2018
        Endless fun for bathtub engineers! Younger kids will love pouring water through the track to see what happens. Older kids will enjoy building and reconfiguring different courses to test with the ball.
        $19.99 |
        4. Wooden Bug Blocks | Ages 2+
        Bug blocks | Yellow Scope Gift Guide 2018
        We love all the high quality, made-in-the USA block sets in the Uncle Goose line, and the bug set is no exception. The budding entomologist in your life will love the detailed close-up illustrations and you will appreciate the thoughtful design.
        5. Quantum Physics for Babies | Ages 2+
        Quantum physics for babies | Yellow Scope Gift Guide 2018
        One in a series of board books written by physicist and father of four, Chris Ferrie, this book introduces basic concepts in physics to the very youngest of scientists, with a tongue-in-cheek style that adults will appreciate too!
        $9.99 | your local bookstore


        6. Magnetic Anatomy Puzzle | Ages 3+
        Anatomy puzzle | Yellow Scope Gift Guide 2018
        A great choice for the future anatomist or doctor on your list! This magnetic puzzle changes up the classic dress-up doll with 24 pieces, including internal organs, the skeleton, and the circulatory system.
        7. Cubetto Coding Toy | Ages 3+
        Cubetto Primo | Yellow Scope Gift Guide 2018
        Meet Cubetto, the friendly wooden robot! Kids will love learning the basics of computer programming through hands-on play. No screens or reading required.
        8. Bird Bingo | Ages 5+
        Bird bingo | Yellow Scope Gift Guide 2018
        For the littlest bird lover on your list, this beautifully illustrated set introduces 64 different bird species from around the world in a twist on the classic game.
        9. Binoculars | Age 3+
        Binoculars | Yellow Scope Gift Guide 2018 
        A perfect first set for the budding naturalist in your life, these shock-proof binoculars from Kidwinz are outfitted with high resolution optics. They even come with a protective carrying case for field work!
        $26.99 |
        10. Electro Dough Kit | Ages 4+
        Electro dough | Yellow Scope Gift Guide 2018
        Explore circuit making with electric dough. This fun set from Tech Will Save Us includes six pots of dough, along with buzzers, alligator clips, and LEDs to bring imaginary doughy creature to life!

        OLDER KIDS

        11. Paper Chromatography Kit | Ages 8+
        Chromatography kit | Yellow Scope Gift Guide 2018
        With Yellow Scope’s newest kit, kids will have a blast uncovering rainbows of color in plants, art supplies, candies and more using a super cool scientific technique. With art and creativity front-and-center, this kit will appeal to all kids, even those who may not realize they love science!
        12. Smore Magazine | Ages 7+
        Smore magazine | Yellow Scope Gift Guide 2018 
        Ignite her brilliance all year long with a subscription to Smore, a science magazine that encourages kids to know more and be more!
        From $29.99/year |
        13. Boolean Box | Ages 8+
        Boolean box | Yellow Scope Gift Guide 2018
        Created by Boolean Girl, a non-profit organization with a mission to close the gender gap in computer science, this kit teaches girls to build their own computer and learn to code using SCRATCH, Minecraft and Python.   
        $149.99 |
        14. Women of NASA | 10+
        Women of NASA | Yellow Scope Gift Guide 2018
        This 231-piece Lego set includes mini-figures of four pioneering women of NASA – astronomer Nancy Grace Roman, computer scientist Margaret Hamilton, and astronauts Sally Ride and Mae Jemison – along with instructions to build the Apollo Guidance Computer, the Hubble Space Telescope as well as the Space Shuttle Challenger.
         15. Cytosis Game | 10+
        Cytosis game | Yellow Scope Gift Guide 2018 
        Launched as a wildly popular Kickstarter project, Cytosis is a board game that takes place inside a human cell. Players compete to build hormones and enzymes all while fending off attacks by viruses!

        Yellow Scope | Five Empowering Halloween Costumes for Girls

        There’s nothing wrong with a princess costume - but some girls may want to trade their tiaras for a cape or beaker! It can be hard to find empowering costumes at your local Halloween pop-up, but the interest is there, and more girls are dressing up as strong female leaders.

        We’ve scoured the internet for inspiring costumes ideas and found many ready-to-wear and DIY costume options that are easy, unique and powerful!


        Yellow Scope Lab Coat | Empowering Halloween Costume For Girls | Scientist

        We’d be lying if we said we didn’t think everybody should dress up as a scientist at least once in their life, and Halloween is the perfect time. Yellow Scope’s white lab coat can be easily accessorized with a pair of safety goggles

        The lab coat includes a cute embroidered yellow microscope that reminds her of her awesome science powers and signals to others that a laboratory genius has entered the room.

        From now through October 31st, enter HALLOWEEN15 at checkout for 15% off anything from our website!


        Yellow Scope Empowering Halloween Costume for Girls | Olympic gymnast

        She was gliding across the kitchen floor in her socks during the Winter Olympics figure skating competition and she dreams of someday competing for TeamUSA. Award her with a gold medal costume this Halloween.

        Liz at Say Yes offers easy steps to create your own Olympic Gymnast costume which can be easily tailored to her favorite sport whether it’s basketball, tennis or skiing!  



        Yellow Scope Empowering Halloween Costume for Girls | Rockford Peaches

        Keeping with the sports theme, who doesn’t love A League of Their Own? Your daughter can celebrate her love for baseball by dressing up as a Rockford Peach.

        A Mighty Girl is an awesome online collection of smart and empowering books, movies, toys and more. Their Rockford Peach costume is officially licensed and features many of the same details seen in the movie including league patches, belt, dress, and baseball cap. Complete the costume with her favorite worn-in baseball glove.

        4. SUPERGIRL


        Yellow Scope Empowering Halloween Costume for Girls | Supergirl

        Leaping typical costumes in a single bound, your daughter will be well on her way to being a girl of steel in this Supergirl costume by Chasing Fireflys.

        The costume is comfortable and made of high-quality materials and includes a sparkly dress, cape and a strong gold belt. You can also purchase cool matching boots to complete the look.



        Yellow Scope Empowering Halloween Costume for Girls  |  Rosie the Riveter

        Our WWII heroine, Rosie the Riveter, is one of the most popular and beloved Halloween costumes for powerful girls and it can be easy to put together at home with a pair of denim pants and jacket. If you need a little help you can purchase the denim shirt, embroidered "Rosie" patch, and handmade polka dot headband from The Silver Closet on Etsy.

        There are lots of people pulling out their sewing machines to create exciting new costumes every day. This “Empowering Girl’s Costume” Pinterest board has lots of great ideas like Lt. Judy Hopps, Alice Paul, an astronaut or an arctic hunter. We hope these ideas inspire you to discover your favorite female role model. Share your costume creations with us on our Facebook page.

        Candy corn and moonlight - wishing you a happy Halloween night! 


        Let us know how your costumes turned out. Share your photos  with us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or send us an email to We love getting your messages!

        Team Yellow Scope!

        1 2 3 6 Next »